Title: Broken Web (Shamanborn #2)
Author: Lori M. Lee
Genre: YA Fantasy
Publication Date: June 15th, 2021
Publisher: Page Street
Thank you so much to the publisher for sending me an arc to read and review!
“The sequel to the hotly-anticipated Forest of Souls, an epic and immersive tale of destiny and sisterhood. Perfect for fans of Susan Dennard, Sarah J. Maas, and Netflix’s The Witcher!
The Soulless has woken from his centuries-long imprisonment. Now, he lurks in the Dead Wood recovering his strength, while Sirscha and her allies journey east to the shaman empire of Nuvalyn. Everyone believes she is a soulguide—a savior—but Sirscha knows the truth. She’s a monster, a soulrender like the Soulless, and if anyone discovers the truth, she’ll be executed.
But there’s nothing Sirscha won’t risk to stop the shaman responsible for the rot that’s killing her best friend. While the Soulless is formidable, like all shamans, his magic must be channeled through a familiar. If Sirscha can discover what—or who—that is, she might be able to cut him off from his power.
With Queen Meilyr bent on destroying the magical kingdoms, Sirscha finds herself caught between a war brewing in the east and the Soulless waiting in the west. She should be trying to unite what peoples she can to face their common enemies, but instead, her hunt for clues about the Soulless leads to a grim discovery, forcing Sirscha to question who her enemies really are.” (Goodreads)
Forest of Souls (Shamanborn #1): Book Review
As someone who liked the first book but felt like it lacked something to really pull me in, this sequel did the trick! This sequel is filled with political intrigue, more lore, lots of action, and learning that good and evil isn’t always black and white. It packs a punch!
Sirscha is still coming to terms with her magical ability of soulrendering and not trying to lose control. Her friend, familiar, and basically a sister Saengo really tries to keep it in check and be the conscious she needs at times. Although their relationship has been left unaffected by the change of Saengo’s soul, it’s easy to understand why the Soulless would want to tear the bond between them. If she doesn’t have the good angel on her shoulder to keep her in check then what would happen to Sirscha? Manipulation is a powerful thing especially if it comes from someone who has been where you are and is “trying to help”. I do think that some of what was talked about when it comes to their friendship will definitely be tested in the third book. Sirscha doesn’t always listen to her gut though and some things tend to go wrong. I feel like this is just human nature as we want to believe that those around us truly want to help. It’s easy to understand her actions and why she makes the choices she does.
Since I’ve mentioned the Soulless I guess I’ll talk about him next, haha. Even though I am not one to be drawn to the “bad guy”, there is something about him that I find intriguing. I like that even though he is far away from Sirscha for most of the book he is still around her in her dreams. He adds a lot to the history of the empire. I’m still not entirely sure what his overall motive is but I like where the plot is going with him and I can’t wait to see what else he has up his sleeve.
Other characters from the first book are still present as well along with new faces too. I still like Theyen and really hope he survives because it would just be too sad of a day if he doesn’t.
Politics is a big topic in the book and because of that it is hard to decide who can really be trusted. There are some that are obviously trustworthy as they have kept Sirscha’s abilities a secret but there are still those that there isn’t enough information on or who have been acting quite suspicious. All of the mistrust does make for some shocking plot twists though!
Overall, I enjoyed the sequel. It had a lot of shocking moments that kept me intrigued throughout and it’s going to be hard to have to wait for the third book. There is just too much at stake and now I’ll just be speculating until then, haha.