If your house could speak to you, what would it say? Are there memories it would share? Memories it holds within its walls secret and unshared with anyone else?
Violet Sterling's house can talk to her...at least in a way it can. For Burleigh House is one of five remaining "great houses" strewn throughout England, bound to the king and his family, and flooded with magic that can only safely be used with the caretakers key.
But when her father is arrested and confined to the house without the key, that magic gets built up and starts to leak out into the countryside killing plants and animals, leaving the house in ruins, and killing Violet's father.
Can Violet return to Burleigh house and restore it to its former glory? Can she do it without the key? And can she uncover the mysteries and solve the underlying problems that are at root here?
A Treason of Thorns is historical fiction, romance, and fantasy all wrapped up in one with a trace of mystery and a strong female heroine to top it off. It is everything I have been loving in books like The Lost Apothecary and The Botanist's Daughter with entirely its own spin. These books are often set in the 1800s (as A Treason of Thorns is) and have at least one stubborn female at the center who can take care of herself come hell or high water. Botany, plants, poisons, and mystery add a touch that makes the book interesting and the sprawling, intricate, and deadly descriptions plentiful. Romance within the books is enjoyable but entirely unnecessary and though each of these books contains a lover for one of the heroines, the romance could be removed entirely and the books would be no less enjoyable, would not make any less sense, and could continue on their tracks without it. None of these books are romances, they simply contain romance.
A Treason of Thorns was a Goodreads suggestion likely based on books like The Botanist's Daughter and The Lost Apothecary. After reading the blurb of the book, I quickly listed it as "to-read" and was disheartened to find it not available at my local library. Who doesn't want to read a book set in England in the 1800s about a living house with magic that is on its last legs (or last cornerstone??) and needing the help of its stubborn heroine to save it?
So when I found it for a good price on ThriftBooks on a spending spree after Christmas (I had two free books and had to spend only a small amount more to maintain my "literati" status) I added it to my cart!
And I'm glad I did. Though I was struggling to find a book to read after finishing the Cursebreakers series, left desiring an easy fantasy read with kings, queens, romance and magic, (read the review of The Cursebreakers series), this one did eventually settle in for me (though it didn't quite fit the bill so I had to tell myself to "stick with it"). While I wouldn't have given it quite as high a rating as my beloved books from last year (The Botanist's Daughter and The Lost Apothecary) it doesn't fall far behind and it is definitely one to read again someday. If you enjoyed these books or books like them, you will enjoy A Treason of Thorns. I will most certainly be looking to get my hands on other books by Laura A. Weymouth to see if I can add her to my "best authors" list and I highly suggest you do the same!