The Witch’s Lens

47North: Amazon. (The Order of the Seven Stars, Bk. 1). Oct. 2023. 256p. ISBN 9781662510403. pap. $16.99. FANTASY
In this haunting, supernatural twist on World War I fiction, Petra Kurková has a magical secret, one that filters out into the real world, with her ability to capture photographs of the souls of the dead. A recruiter, Josef Svoboda, uses that knowledge to bring Petra onto a ragtag team of sorcerers to fight their own battles in the Carpathian Mountains. The war has stirred up terrible, dangerous creatures, and with the help of an ancient organization, the team is tasked with trying to subdue the foul things. But something is amiss; there is power behind the resurrections, and a world balance that has been maintained is set to be ripped apart. Petra must learn to wield her more powerful magic in order to counteract the dangerous magic—before all is lost.
VERDICT A delicious foray into a new series that melds history with the supernatural, from the author of The Raven Song. Smith’s fans, as well as new readers, will delight in the heady mixture of historical fiction, fantasy, and horror.
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