In the heart-stopping sequel to The Witch King, Wyatt and Emyr attempt to rebuild Asalin despite unexpected new enemies within their kingdom.
Two weeks after the door to Faery closed once more, Asalin is still in turmoil. Emyr and Wyatt are hunting Derek and Clarke themselves after having abolished the corrupt Guard, and are trying to convince the other kingdoms to follow their lead. But when they uncover the hidden truth about the witches’ real place in fae society, it becomes clear the problems run much deeper than anyone knew. And this may be more than the two of them can fix.
As Wyatt struggles to learn control of his magic and balance his own needs with the needs of a kingdom, he must finally decide on the future he wants–before he loses the future he and Emyr are building…
The Fae Keeper veers into some heavy territory. Besides racism, colonialism, oppression, slavery, and transphobia, the sequel also digs into trauma, the sometimes fuzzy boundary between healthy and toxic relationships, and sex. The book is definitely older YA verging into New Adult, yet no matter what, Edgmon always keeps teen readers as his focus. It would be ludicrous to assume no teenager has to deal with shifting friendships and relationships, consent, or state-sanctioned identity-based oppressions. Millions of teenagers all over this country are going through some of the same things Wyatt, Emyr, and Briar deal with, if not more and worse. Edgmon confronts those challenges head on, never pulling their punches or sugar-coating the situations. It’s not often readers get to experience characters having detailed discussions about the different shades of queer beyond the commonly known macro labels, unequivocally state that it is okay to revoke consent, or come to understand that a marker of a good relationship is having a partner that respects your needs. Some of it was stated very bluntly, but sometimes it’s better to just say something than to pile on the metaphors.
Read the rest of this review at Locus Magazine.
Buy it at bookshop.org (affiliate link). Thanks to the publisher for sending me a review copy.