Review: Echo North

Genre: Fantasy

Published: January 15th, 2019

Pages: 389

Review: ★★★★

Synopsis: Echo is attacked by a wolf when she is young, only to find that same wolf years later in the woods with her father, who has been missing for months. In order to save her father, she must go with the wolf to his enchanted house beneath a mountain to live and learn to take care of the house. She spends her time at the wolf’s house uncovering mysteries and wandering book mirrors.

Non-Spoiler Review:

I was initially interested in this book because it is a Beauty and the Beast retelling! Even just from the synopsis, that aspect is clear, but the author says in the acknowledgements that it is also based on a few other tales.

The book is split into two parts. The first part is Echo’s backstory and her adventures at the house. I felt like Echo’s background took up a fair amount of time for a book on the shorter side, so the beginning dragged a little bit. The portion where she was with the wolf at his house definitely moved faster. I can’t say much about the plot of the second part of without spoiling it, but it went in a direction I wasn’t expecting. Overall, the pacing was a little weird, from the slow beginning to the direction of the climax.

The magic in this book was really interesting! There are no set rules to magic, so everything was a bit wild. Each room in the wolf’s house contains something magical that needs to be tended to, so the reader gets to see a variety of magical things. Another cool magical aspect were the book mirrors. They are basically just books, but the reader can go into them. It is up to them if they want to follow the main character around or if they want to go explore the world outside where the immediate story is happening.

I really liked Echo. She has scars on her face from when she was attacked by the wolf when she was a child, so she has to deal with the townspeople thinking she is cursed. She was also willing to give up so much for the people she loved. Her relationship with her brother at the beginning of the book was a highlight for me. He was constantly bringing her up and telling her that she could do anything she wanted because she was amazing. He could of been totally awful to her, but instead he was loving and supportive and I loved it.

Overall, I definitely did enjoy the book, despite the plot pacing. The romance in this book was cute, but honestly forgettable. The writing style was just normal. Nothing about it bothered me, but I also didn’t note that it was particularly good. I would recommend this for anyone interested in retellings!

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