Title: Woven in Moonlight
Author: Isabel Ibañez
Publisher: Page Street Books
Release Date: January 7th 2020
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
A lush tapestry of magic, romance, and revolución, drawing inspiration from Bolivian politics and history.
Ximena is the decoy Condesa, a stand-in for the last remaining Illustrian royal. Her people lost everything when the usurper, Atoc, used an ancient relic to summon ghosts and drive the Illustrians from La Ciudad. Now Ximena’s motivated by her insatiable thirst for revenge, and her rare ability to spin thread from moonlight.
When Atoc demands the real Condesa’s hand in marriage, it’s Ximena’s duty to go in her stead. She relishes the chance, as Illustrian spies have reported that Atoc’s no longer carrying his deadly relic. If Ximena can find it, she can return the true aristócrata to their rightful place.
She hunts for the relic, using her weaving ability to hide messages in tapestries for the resistance. But when a masked vigilante, a warm-hearted princess, and a thoughtful healer challenge Ximena, her mission becomes more complicated. There could be a way to overthrow the usurper without starting another war, but only if Ximena turns her back on revenge—and her Condesa.
Isabel Ibañez was born in Boca Raton, Florida, and is the proud daughter of two Bolivian immigrants. A true word nerd, she received her degree in creative writing and has been a Pitch Wars mentor for three years. Isabel is an avid movie goer and loves hosting family and friends around the dinner table. She currently lives in Winter Park, Florida, with her husband, their adorable dog, and a serious collection of books. Say hi on social media at @IsabelWriter09.
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Woven in Moonlight is one of the books I could easily fall in love with: enjoyable characters with strong development, incredible world building, and lush prose. It had all the elements I love in a fantasy novel. This book is truly a strong and masterful debut in the Young Adult fantasy genre.
“Words empowered by justice can never be silenced.”
Ximena is the decoy for the Queen, someone she easily sees as her sister. She understands how important her role is and what it means to protect the condesa from those that would wish to harm her. And when a Llacsan king demands the condesa’s hand in marriage, Ximena goes in her place, doing what she can to protect the condesa. But Ximena has plans of her own: plans that involve breaking this forced marriage and finding a path of her own, one that might possibly separate her from the condesa’s standin. Her courage and love for her people is inspiring, and it makes it difficult for any ready to not like her as a character. Yes, she has flaws (what character doesn’t?), but those flaws never overpower her true mission or her heart.
The world building in Woven in Moonlight is by far phenomenal and beautiful; the lush descriptions really make it easy to picture the world and the hardships many people face, including Ximena. This story is filled to the brim with storytelling and that dash of magic, I thought, really brought this story together nicely. I was, overall, very impressed with the layout and pace of this story – it’s not too slow, not too fast, and it builds tension (and a slow burn romance, might I add) really well, well enough to keep the reader on the edge of their seat.
“Rising tides can’t be held back, but they can be ridden.”
Ibañez has a way with her words. Her writing is powerful and lavish; she could turn even a truly dark scene into a scene that captures the beauty of the light. Her writing brought this world to life and gave the characters a strong and heartfelt voice, especially Ximena. It’s what made the story authentic and feel so real. Ibañez did an amazing job giving this novel (and the characters) a voice.
Woven in Moonlight is inspired by Bolivian culture and history and the current political situation; with all that said, this book beautifully captures that culture and historical background. I was really moved by this book and became deeply attached to some of the characters. I’m looking forward to reading Ibañez’s next work, as she has easily become an instant-buy author for me.
My rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Check out the amazing bloggers that are part of this tour!
PRIZE: Win a copy of WOVEN IN MOONLIGHT by Isabel Ibañez (US/CAN Only)
STARTS: 20th January 2020
ENDS: 3rd February 2020
Thank you, Fantastic Flying Book Club, for having us on this wonderful blog tour!