Author: Heather Fawcett
Series: Emily Wilde
Series #: 1
Genre: fantasy
Age Group: adult
ARC?: yes

Cambridge professor Emily Wilde is good at many things: She is the foremost expert on the study of faeries. She is a genius scholar and a meticulous researcher who is writing the world’s first encyclopaedia of faerie lore. But Emily Wilde is not good at people. She could never make small talk at a party–or even get invited to one. And she prefers the company of her books, her dog, Shadow, and the Fair Folk to other people.

So when she arrives in the hardscrabble village of Hrafnsvik, Emily has no intention of befriending the gruff townsfolk. Nor does she care to spend time with another new arrival: her dashing and insufferably handsome academic rival Wendell Bambleby, who manages to charm the townsfolk, get in the middle of Emily’s research, and utterly confound and frustrate her.

But as Emily gets closer and closer to uncovering the secrets of the Hidden Ones–the most elusive of all faeries–lurking in the shadowy forest outside the town, she also finds herself on the trail of another mystery: Who is Wendell Bambleby, and what does he really want? To find the answer, she’ll have to unlock the greatest mystery of all–her own heart.


Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for an arc in exchange for an honest review! 🙂

Holy smokes! I love anything to do with faeries, and I have since I was a little girl. With all the fae in books recently I felt that this was a refreshing take on them. (Not that there is anything wrong with the others, there isn’t). At first when I saw it was written as diary entries I worried that it would read awkwardly.

It did not. In fact, I really loved how the book read as diary entries. Emily was such an engaging character and getting to know her was lovely! I was impressed with Fawcett who was able to communicate so much through diary entries. Now, don’t think of the diary entries as you would, because they do not read like them. This makes the book flow better.

One side note because I love the way that it was incorporated into the book was how terminology and studies were introduced. I felt like it helped add a lot to the world we were getting to know. The fact that these are not necessarily hidden creatures, but part of the world was well done, it felt like it was more…natural? Really, it felt as if the faeries could actually exist in our world today. Don’t think Maas or Black faeries, think a bit differently than that. It’s very hard to explain without giving too much away.

The romance in this book was humorous. I loved how Emily approached romance and life, because I felt for her. Emily has a great character arc throughout this book, both internally and externally growing as a character. There are spots of humor in this book that worked for me and had me giggling at some points. Wendall is my second favorite character, and honestly he was the funny part of the entire book.

I LOVED the writing in the book, if that wasn’t clear. I was absorbed by it, and just got so engaged throughout the entire book.

The plot was spectacular and I loved how it unraveled, and I’ll say nothing else about the plot as it would lead to too many spoilers.

Another warning, is there are some darker aspects of this book. This is very much a historical fantasy book that has a dose of romance. It is NOT a romance book, so don’t go in expecting that romance will be the focus of the book, it is not.

I do wish the ending was a little bit longer, but it looks as if we’re getting a second book so I can only hope that maybe we get some more!

Some comparisons to this might be Olivia Atwater, Katherine Arden, Naomi Novik are a few that I can think of that have similar vibes.