The Foxglove King

Orbit. (The Nightshade Crown, Bk. 1). Mar. 2023. 480p. ISBN 9780316434997. $29. FANTASY
Mortem is the magic of death, left behind by the Buried Goddess Nyxara. Lore has spent her life keeping her use of it hidden, but during one of her poison runs, her secret is revealed. Expecting a death sentence, she instead is taken by the Presque Mort, monks who are sanctioned to use Mortem for the Sainted King. Conscripted by King August to discover why village residents are dying and uncover a traitor close to the throne, Lore navigates the court—politics, religion, and treachery all wrapped in glitter and opulence—along with her growing relationships with her Presque Mort guard Gabriel and the impudent Sun Prince, Bastian. As the truths of the power plays are revealed, no one will escape with their secrets. Romantic tension, an interesting magic system, and detailed worldbuilding create a fast-paced novel in a new world. While the protagonists are a little older, this can still be a good young adult crossover read.
VERDICT Whitten’s (For the Throne) new novel showcases her witty dialogue and captivating prose. Romantic fantasy fans will enjoy this and await the next in the series.
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