Kate Elliott

Book 1, Spirit Walker

Orbit (2010)

ISBN: 978-1-8414-9881-2

Reviewed by Mitenae

Cat, having been orphaned at a young age, is growing up with her aunt, uncle and best friend (and cousin) Bee. The pair is inseparable, and even get in trouble together. But Cat’s life is turned upside down when the magister from the four moons house comes to claim the eldest daughter and marries her on the spot. Cat finds herself separated from her best friend, her family and thrust into a world that wants her to benefit itself.

But that is only a taste of what Cold Magic has for the intrepid reader. It’s a book set in a re-imagined nineteenth century just at the dawn of the industrial revolution. This is a world familiar to us, but starkly different. There’s a land bridge joining the UK to continental Europe (called by it’s older name Europa) and the nations bear little resemblance to what we know them as. This is a world that has taken much time to build. It’s a world that is rich in its depth, detail and texture and it makes for great storytelling.

Cold Magic has me in its thrall from the beginning and left me wanting to read the next volume. I like the relationship between Cat and Bee and their stories, but I would have liked to read more of Bee’s story rather than only hearing about afterwards.

Cold Magic is one of the few must-reads I have for this year. Kate Elliott is a skilled writer, worldbuilder and storyteller and I can’t wait to see what she does next with this brilliant new series.