Listen, this woman is a storyteller. From way back. I haven’t read anything YA lately that can compare with this.
Seriously, y’all. I did not think it possible for Ms. Wendtland to top A Quarrel Called, but the lady has Outdone Herself. I do so crush on a second book in a series that carries a weight of surprises and is even better than the first the book. And A Calling of Quarrels has the stuff. This story is one of the most believable magic stories I’ve ever read. Ever. Ev. er.
G. is missing. Sam is addicted to Lily and Tara is mourning. The hole in Melody’s heart, rather than healing, has grown ever larger. And trouble is coming. More than the Quarrel thought possible.
The first book is told in alternating POVs from the 4 main characters. Do Not let that turn you off. I’ve never seen an author pull that off the way Wendtland does. Each character has a different voice. In fact, I would venture to say that I would have known whose POV I was reading from without the chapter headings that told me. She’s that good.
In this latest installment, we get the added benefit of a 5th character’s POV, and it was totally unexpected and made me change my mind entirely about some of the assumptions I made while reading the first book. And I do love it when an author flips me over my head.
If you’re a conspiracy theorist at all—and I am—this book will sing to your soul. You will find yourself looking around at the world with new, wary eyes. But it’s just a story. Isn’t it? If Wendtland didn’t have such a flair for grounding her magical world in reality and science, you might be able to convince yourself that it is. All I’m saying is that I passed on a super-cute cake stand while out shopping the other day because the base was an owl. And I shuddered. You’ll have to read the book if you want to know why.
Here’s the thing. A Calling of Quarrels has so many twists and turns and so many new aspects to the story that the whole time you’re reading it you’re jumping out of your skin in anticipation.
I’m not making it up. I could not put it down.
And when life Made Me put it down, I was constantly trying to figure out where things were going next.
This story makes you think. Every time the characters discover some new clue or some new crisis happens, you can’t help but stop and try to figure it all out. Wendtland is a master at not letting you figure it all out. I crush so hard on this book because it was filled with surprise after shock after twist.
All I can say is:
Shannon, you better be writing hard. Because I Cannot Wait to see how this all wraps up.
But also, I can. Because I really don’t want this story ever to end.
I promise you, this is a series that will end up well-thumbed and many-times read, and I will always hold it as sacred in my heart.
Read the first book if you haven’t already. And when you get the second book (which is out Today! Callooh! Callay!)? Be ready, because just about everything you thought you knew? Think again.
One little disclaimer—I normally don’t recommend YA books that contain teen sex, drinking, and the like, and this one has those. But honestly, y’all, they make the story and the characters so much more raw and real, and that’s one of the things I love best about Wendtland’s work: its raw honesty. So if you’re not comfortable picking it up for your teen, don’t worry. This one you’ll want to read yourself.
Make sure to check back next Tuesday for an amazing giveaway from Shannon Wendtland!
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