Series: World at the Lake’s Edge #1
Author: Lyndall Clipstone
Release Date: September 28th, 2021
Page Length: 384 Pages
Genre: Fantasy, Gothic, Romance, Paranormal
Age Range: YA
Rating: 4/5 Stars ⭐️
Thank you to the author and TBR and Beyond Tours for a copy of this book in exchange for a review. All opinions are my own.
Content Warnings: Emotional and physical abuse by a parent, Body horror, Goreand blood (including description of wounds), Emesis, Discussions of death and grief (no on-page deaths), Descriptions of drowning and deep water, Drowning-related imagery Self-injury (in the context of a curse that requires regular physical sacrifices), suicidal ideation
There are monsters in the world.
When Violeta Graceling arrives at haunted Lakesedge estate, she expects to find a monster. She knows the terrifying rumors about Rowan Sylvanan, who drowned his entire family when he was a boy. But neither the estate nor the monster are what they seem.
There are monsters in the woods.
As Leta falls for Rowan, she discovers he is bound to the Lord Under, the sinister death god lurking in the black waters of the lake. A creature to whom Leta is inexplicably drawn…
There’s a monster in the shadows, and now it knows my name.
Now, to save Rowan—and herself—Leta must confront the darkness in her past, including unraveling the mystery of her connection to the Lord Under.
This book is full of:
-Monster boys who gift you pretty dresses
-Secret gardens and bramble thorns
-Death gods who whisper your name in the dark
-Honey scented altar candles
-Almost-kisses at midnight
A genre I love that you don’t see a lot of in YA books is Gothic Romance. This book has a little bit of everything to make it good. There’s a feisty female MC, a brooding male MC (Sort of a new take on the Sunshine/Grumpy trope?), lots of dark, creepy and eerie elements and a mystery that keeps you hooked.
I don’t want to reiterate what the story is about by basically explaining the synopsis but in my own words and understanding so I’m not going to. I’ll talk about other things instead. Like the fantastic magical world building. The magic system and the world’s setting were something I really loved.
The plot was pretty amazing too, and incredibly original. The book’s synopsis promised us a beautiful romance, monster vibes, creepy vibes and a plot that ran deep, and it delivered on all fronts. The only thing I didn’t like about this book was the fact that it had a trope I absolutely hate. Self-sacrifice. Have I mentioned I hate heroes? People who want to sacrifice themselves for the “greater good”? I like it when they’re villains and would do anything to keep each other alive, everyone else be damned.
But other than that, this was such an interest read, I devoured it in one go and if you like books with supernatural gothic vibes and some romance too, this is the book for you.
Lyndall Clipstone writes about monsters and the girls who like to kiss them. A former youth librarian who grew up running wild in the Barossa Ranges of South Australia, she currently lives in Adelaide, where she tends her own indoor secret garden. She has a Bachelors in Creative Writing and a Graduate Diploma in Library and Information Management. Her debut novel, Lakesedge, will be published by Henry Holt, Titan UK and Pan Macmillan Australia in Fall 2021 with a sequel, Forestfall, to publish in Fall 2022.