Servant Mage Review

E-ARC, 176 Pages
Novella/ Fantasy
By: Kate Elliott
Rating: 🌟🌟 1/2

“Honor never dies, even when traitors stab it in the back.”

I have never read anything by the author before and just stumbled upon this book on Edelweiss while browsing upcoming books. I can’t deny that that main reason that made me pick this one up is the cover and that I am always willing to discover new authors. I am thankful for the publisher who provided the review ARC in exchange of an honest review.

I usually say that Novellas don’t work for me usually for the main reason of the length which limits the way the story is told with constriction on character growth and world building and plot. This book kind of follows the rule. The writing itself is not bad, I mostly enjoyed the way the writing let the world building unfold but sometimes the word choices were questionable like when the author wrote:

He took his handsome boot off the step and snapped his fingers.

By the flare of his very pretty eyes she could see she had startled him.

These are examples of things that sounded a bit weird to me and when telling was used rather than telling.

The best part about the book was the world-building, I think what we got was very interesting and I can see it expanding easily into a full novel. The way the world was explained is also very smart because it was done gradually and not in an info-dumpy kind of way.

That being said, I think the plot and characters were affected as a result of that because you can’t cram everything in 170 pages. I think the plot was gripping at first and somewhere around 50% it kind of lost me and I was already thinking of my next read and if the book was longer, I would probably have DNfed it.

Summary: It is not a bad book per se but I think it should have been expanded into a full novel with more focus on the characters and the plot. I enjoyed the world-building the most and I think it was a short read anyway so I don’t have much regrets!

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