In the Ravenous Dark

Imprint. May 2021. 400p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781250776600.
Gr 10 Up–Nineteen-year-old Rovan Ballacra is a pansexual bloodmage, magical and using blood as a power source, who keeps her magic hidden. Having similar skin color to her father, much paler than most of the bronze-skinned bloodmages, she is successful in hiding her powers. Living in Thanopolis, she is assigned an undead spirit named Ivrilos after her father dies. He is to look after her and guide her. Once she accidently reveals her magic, she is forced to live in a fantasy world. She is not sure who to trust. She is controlled by Ivrilos but also swayed by Lydea, a rebel Princess. Both Lydea and Rovan are expected to marry those chosen for them. Rovan falls for Lydea but has a strong relationship with Ivrilos as well. Together, they reveal a secret that could destroy Thanopolis and must fight to save it. Strong, interesting characters and a well-developed world make this a fantastic fantasy. Rovan is cunning and not to be outrivaled by anyone. Characters have a variety of sexual orientations and Strickland doesn’t shy away from sexual content: Well-written on-the-page sex scenes, as well as profanity, make this book a fit for older readers.
VERDICT A sexy romance for fantasy fans looking for a suspenseful plot set in a dark world. Hand to readers who enjoyed Strickland’s Beyond the Black Door.

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