Title: Winterwood (Rowankind #1)
Author: Jacey Bedford
Length: 424 pages
Where Bethany’s copy came from: The Indianapolis Public Library
Plot Basics: Ross (Rossalinde) Tremayne is just a girl masquerading as her dead-pirate-husband and trying to keep her magical powers in check. When summoned to her mother’s death bed, she discovers her powers may hold much at stake for the future of England, her family, and the mysterious indentured rowankind that serve the best families.
Banter Points: I wanted to like this book. I really did.
Bummer Points: The first few chapters were solid and then this book fell apart for me. Bedford crammed WAY too much into one book. I wanted to read a book about a girl pirate with magical powers. There’s only one-and-a-half sea battles in the book and almost no piracy. Suddenly, there are fae and shapeshifters and other forest people and spies and more sailors with names like Hookey, Bone and Lazy Billy than I can possibly keep straight.
Also, and very telling, I didn’t like Ross. I found her, simply, uncompelling. She didn’t come across as captainly. She didn’t impress me as a magic user. In the end, Ross’s past as a cross-dressing pirate captain played almost no part in the resolution of the plot.
Word Nerd Recommendation: Skip it. If I’d known in the first few chapters, I wouldn’t have kept going. If you’re looking for a good swash-buckling book, this isn’t it.