Title: Havenfall (Havenfall #1)
Author: Sara Holland
Publisher: Bloomsbury YA
Publication date: March 3rd, 2020
A safe haven between four realms. The girl sworn to protect it–at any cost.
Hidden deep in the mountains of Colorado lies the Inn at Havenfall, a sanctuary that connects ancient worlds–each with their own magic–together. For generations, the inn has protected all who seek refuge within its walls, and any who disrupt the peace can never return.
For Maddie Morrow, summers at the inn are more than a chance to experience this magic first-hand. Havenfall is an escape from reality, where her mother sits on death row accused of murdering Maddie’s brother. It’s where Maddie fell in love with handsome Fiorden soldier Brekken. And it’s where one day she hopes to inherit the role of Innkeeper from her beloved uncle.
But this summer, the impossible happens–a dead body is found, shattering everything the inn stands for. With Brekken missing, her uncle gravely injured, and a dangerous creature on the loose, Maddie suddenly finds herself responsible for the safety of everyone in Havenfall. She’ll do anything to uncover the truth, even if it means working together with an alluring new staffer Taya, who seems to know more than she’s letting on. As dark secrets are revealed about the inn itself, one thing becomes clear to Maddie–no one can be trusted, and no one is safe . . .
**Thank you to Bloomsbury YA, Netgalley, and Sara Holland for providing me this ebook in exchange for an honest review**
Havenfall was one of my most highly anticipated releases for 2020. I really loved her Everless duology and was stoked to get the opportunity to read the start of her sophomore duology. Havenfall didn’t exactly live up to my expectations, but was still a very solid read with a unique concept.
Havenfall follows Madeline Morrow, the niece of the innkeeper of Havenfall. Havenfall is the connection between three realms, where the peace treaty is enforced. The Innkeeper, Marcus, maintains the alliance and peace between Haven (Earth), Byrn, and Fiordenkill and plans a summit every summer where delegates can come to Haven without worrying about being seen by humans.
I wanted to like this book so much more than I did. It was good, but not great. I liked the characters and the twists and turns, but the flow and pacing seemed off. By the end, I was very much into it and I will definitely be reading the sequel, but it took too long to rope me in. I wanted more from it. One thing I noticed is there is so much time spent on world building and setting the scene – even to the point of being repetitive and redundant. That may be cleaned up in edits, so I’m not holding that against Havenfall too much.
I liked the amount of twists and reveals, it seemed like more than a usual YA book. I didn’t see a few of them coming, so that is always a plus for me. The ending was nice too, because it was action filled and suspenseful without leaving it on a huge cliffhanger. I wanted more from this book, so I’m excited to see if the sequel will have a strong ending.
Happy reading, folks!