Thursday, October 8, 2015

Drift and Dagger by Kendall Kulper {review}

Drift and Dagger
by Kendall Kulper
♦publisher: Little, Brown BYR
♦release date: September 8th, 2015
♦hardcover, 368 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦stand-alone (companion prequel to Salt & Storm)
♦source: from publisher for honest review
I’ve always been a monster. And monsters destroy things. Things like magic and friendships and futures.

Mal used to have a home, a best friend, and a secret. But he lost all three on the day Essie Roe exposed him as a blank. Blanks cannot be cursed or saved or killed by magic. And everyone is afraid of them—even Mal himself.

Now Mal travels the world in search of dangerous and illegal magical relics, never stopping in any one place too long. When his partner in crime, Boone, hears of a legendary dagger that can steal magic, Mal knows he finally may have found a way to even the score with Essie. Crossing oceans and continents, Mal and Boone travel from Boston to Paris to Constantinople in search of the dagger. Finding it would mean riches, fame, and revenge—but only if Mal can control the monster inside him.

Kendall Kulper weaves a vivid story of betrayal and determination—and the road to forgiveness—in this new adventure set in the world of Salt & Storm.

Review: I admit I haven’t read this author’s first book, Salt & Storm. But after hearing that it is even better than Drift & Dagger, I know I need to move it up on my reading list…because I really enjoyed this one quite a lot! This is the prequel to the events of Salt & Storm so I’m eager to see where Essie’s story leads. Kendal Kulper’s writing is stunning and the world she has built to backdrop Mal’s story is a lush version of the 1850’s infused with magic, superstition, hunters, mysterious artifacts, and secret societies.  His adventure spans the globe, starting in a small-minded and curse-fearing town called Prince Island and on to London, New York, Constantinople, and even the jungles of Burma.

Mal is a constantly surprising character. At times he’s clever and resourceful, but at the idea of being left on his own, he fears the threat of loneliness.  He can be a bit broody at times, especially when thinking about the life he’s been dealt as a blank and what he fears he’ll become according to legend.  And then there is a side of him that is angry and wants nothing more than vengeance on Essie for what she did to him. He teams up with Boone, a shady thief with powers of magical persuasion—and while his power doesn’t work on Mal, he’s all too happy to play Mal’s fear and weakness to his advantage under the guise of being his only friend. Definitely a character readers will love to hate.

While both the romantic twist and the “true” nature of the monster growing in Mal are not hard to see coming, I love the way this ended and was more than happy to see a few despicable characters get exactly what they deserved! Many excited scenes that had my heart pounding, lots of adventure as they chase down a magical dagger. The only issues I had were with the frequent jumps to past stories that I found a bit jarring, but gave great insight to the story as a whole.

I’ll definitely be reaching for more work from this author in the future!
Find Kendall Kulper online:  Website  •  Twitter  •  Tumblr

Purchase the book:  Indiebound  •  BookDepository  •  Amazon


Post a Comment