Floodtide by Heather Rose Jones

This novel made me want to grab a sketchpad and create one of those beautiful maps you find in antique shops or Tolkien books.

What was the book about?:
The streets are a perilous place for a young laundry maid dismissed without a character for indecent acts. Roz knew the end of the path for a country girl alone in the city of

A desperate escape in the night brings her to the doorstep of Dominique the dressmaker and the hope of a second chance beyond what she could have imagined. Roz’s apprenticeship with the needle, under the patronage of the Royal Thaumaturgist, wasn’t supposed to include learning magic, but Celeste, the dressmaker’s daughter, draws Roz into the mysterious world of the charm-wives. When floodwaters and fever sweep through the lower city, Celeste’s magical charms could bring hope and healing to the forgotten poor of Rotenek, but only if Roz can claim the help of some unlikely allies.

Set in the magical early 19th century world of Alpennia, Floodtide tells an independent tale that interweaves with the adventures.

Featured Tropes: Historical / fantasy, YA, mysterious religion, hierarchy of society

Book Strengths:

There are many strengths in this novel, but space permits me to detail only a couple of them. Here’s one: the world-building. It’s so good. Jones centres the city of Rotenek in  Alpennia in the 1800s. It is basically Europe. It works because she’s tweaked reality just enough so that we nod at the parts we recognise and revel in the parts pulled from imagination. Another strength is that Jones brings depth and layers to the story in the language of Alpennia and the religious practices without us needing to keep a notebook handy to create charts of who said what, and when, and why, and what does this mean? This story is wonderful to read, sweeping in grandeur and tight in its tale.

Book weaknesses:
It’s such a specific genre. If you’re into contemporary romance with sex and snappy dialogue, then this is not the story for you.

Character Chemistry:

I would not classify this novel as a romance. The young main character is a lesbian and does express feelings towards women, but the main focus of the novel is the adventure of the flood tide and how this impacts on the city and the citizens.

I hadn’t heard of this author before I read Floodtide. Obviously I have now downloaded all of Jones’ novels because of course I did. She’s a great writer and this is an awesome book.

Star Rating: 5 stars

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