Last Updated on December 20, 2022 by ThoughtsStained
Oh wow. So, you may have seen Half a Soul by Olivia Atwater all over social media recently. I was lucky enough to receive an ARC from Orbit, which I requested because it was a fantasy romance. Yet I didn’t expect was how much I truly would fall in love with this book. Friends, I inhaled this novel.
So, let’s dive into this wonderful gem.
An ARC of the book was given in exchange for an honest review.
Publisher: Orbit Books | Release Date: April 2022 | Pages: 284
Age Range: Adult | Genre: Fantasy Romance | Format: Paperback | Source: ARC
It’s difficult to find a husband in Regency England when you’re a young lady with only half a soul.
Ever since she was cursed by a faerie, Theodora Ettings has had no sense of fear or embarrassment – a condition which makes her prone to accidental scandal. Dora hopes to be a quiet, sensible wallflower during the London Season – but when the strange, handsome and utterly uncouth Lord Sorcier discovers her condition, she is instead drawn into dangerous and peculiar faerie affairs.
If Dora’s reputation can survive both her curse and her sudden connection with the least-liked man in all of high society, then she may yet reclaim her normal place in the world. . . but the longer Dora spends with Elias Wilder, the more she begins to suspect that one may indeed fall in love, even with only half a soul.
On the Page
- Abusive relationships (familial)
- Emotional and verbal abuse
- Medical treatment and procedures
- Arranged marriage (attempted)
Content warnings are written up by me, unless specified. Subject to being an incomplete list, though guided by referencing this list and trying to highlight as many as I can identify.
- The plot: This isn’t a spoiler, since it’s literally in the title, in the description and happens in the very first chapter. But, Dora only has half a soul, after her emotive half is stolen by a Faerie. I loved how the plot wasn’t driven by the vengeance to get it back, for that wouldn’t match the personality that Dora was left with. Instead, we follow her journey to help her cousin get married and then get swept up into several seemingly minor plot threads that then all come together. It’s glorious.
- Dora’s presentation: The way Dora was written was so fascinating. I can’t imagine trying to write a character who literally couldn’t feel, nor express, intense emotions, and doing it as well as Atwater does here. Especially in a romance. I loved her from the start.
- Romance: It was so pure. 😭
- Wit and humor: Particularly, I fell in love with Dora’s wit and humor. It complimented so well with Lord Sorcier’s, rebelled against the expectations of society (and her horrid Aunt) and endeared her to me even more.
- I cannot think of a thing. I absolutely adored this book.
Honestly, when a book mentioned that it deals with anything from Faerie, I’m usually not much interested in it. Why? Beats me, but it’s not my jam. I am so glad that I ignored that with Half a Soul. I literally read this book in a manner of hours. It’s so wonderfully written, so pure in its delivery and tone, so light and whimsical; all things that go against the dark angst and themes that I usually gravitate towards. Yet, it didn’t take away my love at all, but instead, expanded it.
What a truly wonderful read. I am positively itching to read more from this series!