After being approached by the publisher (Stories Untold Press) to read & review The Crowns of Croswald via NetGalley, I inquired about also being able to read & review the second book, The Girl with the Whispering Shadow, which they agreed to.
Middle Grade, Adventure, Fantasy, Magic
This review contains spoilers for the first book in the series, The Crowns of Croswald and may contain some spoilers for The Girl with the Whispering Shadow.
In this book, Derwin then sends Ivy off to "The Town" (the enchanted magical city of scrivenists, called Belzebuthe) to search for the second part of her Kindred Stone and stay hidden from the Dark Queen. It just so happened that the address Derwin sent her to stay at in Belzebuthe belonged to none other than Fyn Greeley and his mother! Ivy spends much of the book running around with Fyn and his friends, getting into trouble and dodging a creepy shadow figure.
We got to see more of how the magic in Croswald works in this book, which I really enjoyed. Ivy spent most of the story either in Belzebuthe or on other adventures, and only a very small part actually at The Halls of Ivy. It was quite fun to get to know some other settings! The whole world of Croswald still gives me major Harry Potter vibes, and I enjoy it quite a bit.
In the first book, I didn't find that there was much character building of the secondary characters, like Fyn and Rebecca, but I found that was improved in this book (however I still don't much care for, or trust, Fyn). I did have a bit of difficulty keeping the members of the Quogo Club straight, but that is likely more a personal thing than the characters themselves.
I don't have much to say on the side of criticism - there were a few grammatical errors here and there, but nothing too serious. This second book also reads like a middle grade novel, which is great. There were moments when Ivy did act a bit more like a 16-17 year old girl than in the first book, but I still feel like she should be around 14, so her age still throws me off and is still a bit of an issue for me.
My Goodreads rating: