BEYOND THE SHADOWED EARTH, by Joanna Ruth Meyer, Page Street Publishing

It has always been Eda’s dream to become empress, no matter the cost. Haunted by her ambition and selfishness, she’s convinced that the only way to achieve her goal is to barter with the gods. But all requests come with a price and Eda bargains away the soul of her best friend in exchange for the crown.

Years later, her hold on the empire begins to crumble and her best friend unexpectedly grows sick and dies. Gnawed by guilt and betrayal, Eda embarks on a harrowing journey to confront the very god who gave her the kingdom in the first place. However, she soon discovers that he’s trapped at the center of an otherworldly labyrinth and that her bargain with him is more complex than she ever could have imagined.

Set in the same universe as Joanna’s debut, Beneath the Haunting SeaBeyond the Shadowed Earth combines her incredible world building and lush prose with a new, villainous lead.

Out January 2020

400 Pages


I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

Tropes… love triangles… nooooo!

This is the author who wrote Echo North???? Huh?

I’ve noticed that many authors, especially in the YA genre, start off as okay writers, some too fluffy, others too gooey, but over time, really improve with their writing. The first book of this companion read was difficult to finish and not my favorite at all, despite being from the fantasy genre. So when this book came along, with it’s beautiful cover, I thought I’d see how the author’s improved or not.

The writing has, the composition of the book–much better. The wording and sentencing, not bad. The character—ummm, well you can’t win them all. The premise of the book pulled me in and so I began to read. I wonder if this is a case of where the author is still searching for what she writes best? Some authors choose a genre they should never touch instead of writing what they know. Some are new writers and still learning. So you have to give credit where it’s due. Concept, tension and growing, versatile characters were all present and accounted for. Edna was a dastardly villain, maybe too dastardly for her own good. Her character needed to be more fleshed out to be fully-rounded and believable/realistic. She was better than the first book’s character, just two-dimensional at times.

The magic system… yuck and what?

The world-building was okay.

The author’s writing is improving with each new book. I just hope she continues to.

I gave this book:

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