City of Woven Streets-Emmi Itäranta Review

I am the first to say my local library is utterly pants. But this was a diamond in the rough as far as I’m concerned. I picked my way through a sea of terrible-and by terrible I of course mean wonderful- romance novels to the ‘new books’ section and picked up this beauty. Given that it was published in June 2016 you’ll begin to understand why I despair at my library.

But what about the book? I’ll endeavour not to spoil anything but if you’re into that specific kind of fantasy that drops you into the deep end of a world without 112 pages of explanation of the finer points of the culture of every race and creature represented then you will love this. You learn on the job – as it were – and I would say that Emmi does a good job of making sure you learn what you need to know when you need to know it.

I know some of the critique of the book is that the representation of LGBTQIA+ characters feels a little forced, but I would argue the opposite. I liked that they were dropped in and it was just a ‘well here I am this is my identity this is who I love and now back to the actual plot because that is why you are here isn’t it?’ Which, in my opinion, is how these characters should be included, intentionally and obviously but not patronisingly.

The story is compelling, I liked the twists and turns and jumbles – much like the woven threads constantly referenced in the story. I’m the kind of person who likes to associate things with colours and the cover choice of this book is perfect for that, the whole thing feels a kind of misty blue where everything is in a bit of a haze and it’s only when you get close to something that you realise what on earth is going on.

I won’t babble because I’ll reveal too much, but all I can say is, if you’ve stumbled across this review because you’re wondering whether to read this then give it a go. The worst thing that can happen is you read a book right?


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