Serpent & Dove by Shelby Mahurin

Book Review Fantasy Four Star Genre Star Rating Young AdultLeave a Comment on Serpent & Dove by Shelby Mahurin

Serpent & Dove by Shelby Mahurin

Rating : ★ ★ ★ ★

Lou is a witch hiding away from her coven. She’s taken to stealing to get by and when she finds out that a nobleman is selling magic artifacts, namely a ring that would render the wearer invisible or block magic from being used upon them. She thinks she has finally found her freedom. That is until she is seen by a witch hunter. Reid doesn’t know what she is, he believes she is a thief and after a very public scene he has to protect the honor of the men he serves by marrying her.

What first interested me in this book was the magic system. I saw Shelby Mahurin talking at Epic Reads with Victoria Aveyard. She was talking about how the magic is an equal trade. To break a lock, for instance, you would be given the option to break a friendship or break a bone. I thought this concept was really interesting.

I really expected for there to be more magic, but I guess I understand why there wasn’t. Magic left an odor, a sweet scent in it’s wake and Lou was in hiding and out of practice. I also was expecting it to be darker, which in fact it was fairly dark but the tone shifted and felt very, young adult.

That is until we came to “the scene”. There is a pretty steamy sex scene in this book. I had heard about it from a few reviews and seen people tweeting about it, but I wasn’t prepared. I’m not shy. I read smutty adult romances all the time, but this one made me blush. There wasn’t anything overly explicit in the phrasing but it was pretty steamy and intense. Especially how Lou and Reid’s relationship had changed.

Now let’s talk about Lou and Reid. I loved them both. Lou was snarky and sweet. She loved cursing around Reid because as a man of God he didn’t like it very much. I liked how Reid was still protective over Lou even though he thought she was a “heathen”. He had a sense of honor and also this innocence about him that made me like him more. Being a heathen myself in many ways that Lou was, especially the cursing for sure, I thought it’d be cute to make someone blush.

I really did enjoy the book, but I felt like it was trying to be too many things at once and it really didn’t strike enough of a balance for it to be a five star read for me. I kept wanting a little bit more. To go a little darker, to take more risks.

That said, I can’t wait to read the sequel. I love the world and the lore and the relationships that were built in this book. I want answers to my questions.

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