Dreamer’s Pool (Blackthorn & Grim #1) by Juliet Marillier (review)

March 1, 2015 All Reviews, Fantasy, Historical, YA 6 ★★★★★

Dreamer’s Pool (Blackthorn & Grim #1) by Juliet Marillier (review)Dreamer's Pool by Juliet Marillier
Series: Blackthorn & Grim #1
Published by Roc on November 4th, 2014
Number of Pages: 448
Genres: Fantasy, Historical, Mystery, Mythology, Romance, Young Adult
Source: Gift
Format: Hardcover
Purchase: At Amazon

In exchange for help escaping her long and wrongful imprisonment, embittered magical healer Blackthorn has vowed to set aside her bid for vengeance against the man who destroyed all that she once held dear. Followed by a former prison mate, a silent hulk of a man named Grim, she travels north to Dalriada. There she'll live on the fringe of a mysterious forest, duty bound for seven years to assist anyone who asks for her help.

Oran, crown prince of Dalriada, has waited anxiously for the arrival of his future bride, Lady Flidais. He knows her only from a portrait and sweetly poetic correspondence that have convinced him Flidais is his destined true love. But Oran discovers letters can lie. For although his intended exactly resembles her portrait, her brutality upon arrival proves she is nothing like the sensitive woman of the letters.

With the strategic marriage imminent, Oran sees no way out of his dilemma. Word has spread that Blackthorn possesses a remarkable gift for solving knotty problems, so the prince asks her for help. To save Oran from his treacherous nuptials, Blackthorn and Grim will need all their resources: courage, ingenuity, leaps of deduction, and more than a little magic.

You know how most times, you pick up a book and start reading, and then you need to do something else like sleep, and say “at the end of this page.” or “at the end of this chapter.” Yeah. I totally spent the entire day doing nothing but reading this book. I didn’t have lunch. The only reason I had dinner was because it was brought to me and the book taken away for the short time it took to eat the fast food burger.

I loved Blackthorn and Grimm. They were believable characters, with quirks and faults and three-dimensional personalities. Oran was interesting, but not a favorite. And even though we don’t really get a sense of his personality, I liked Conmael and hope we get to know him more in the next book.

I loved the twist about what was wrong with Flidais and how it had happened. I had a number of theories, all of which turned out to be mostly or completely wrong. I didn’t like one character (who will not be named or the story will be spoiled!) much, but I’m fairly sure we weren’t supposed to like her, so that’s all right.

Oran I would have liked more if it hadn’t taken him so long to realize there was a problem. And the reason he realized it? Really? I liked most of the minor characters and smaller plot lines in the book. I can hardly wait to read the next in the series. If you haven’t read this book yet, you should!


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6 Responses to “Dreamer’s Pool (Blackthorn & Grim #1) by Juliet Marillier (review)”

    • SilvaraWilde

      Thank you! I’d been wanting to read it, but hadn’t gotten around to actually buying it, and then Pabkins decided to send me a copy. *laughs* I can hardly wait for book 2!

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