**Threadneedle was sent to me for free in exchange for an honest review. Thanks to Random Things Tours for having me on the tour.**
Within the boroughs of London, nestled among its streets, hides another city, filled with magic.
Magic is the first sin. It must be bound.
Ever since Anna can remember, her aunt has warned her of the dangers of magic. She has taught her to fear how it twists and knots and turns into something dark and deadly.
It was, after all, magic that killed her parents and left her in her aunt’s care. It’s why she has been protected from the magical world and, in one year’s time, what little magic she has will be bound. She will join her aunt alongside the other Binders who believe magic is a sin not to be used, but denied. Only one more year and she will be free of the curse of magic, her aunt’s teachings and the disappointment of the little she is capable of.
Nothing – and no one – could change her mind before then. Could it?
Threadneedle is a twisty, magical read that brings to life London in the most thrilling way possible. It is the first book in The Language of Magic series.
I admit it’s been a long time since I last read a YA book about witches but I’m so thrilled the opportunity to read this beauty landed in my inbox. Firstly, it would simply be a sin not to mention the gorgeous cover. This immediately caught my attention and made me want to read it. But aside from that, I thoroughly enjoyed the world-building and character development throughout this book. They were so intricately entwined with one another and it really made the story come alive.
Initially, I had concerns that the types of magic would become confusing the more that were introduced throughout the book but I ended up not finding it to be much of a problem. It was fascinating to read as it all came together and made sense. The Binders – to me – felt like a cult from the moment they were introduced. There was something that felt distinctly off about them as they seemed to turn a blind eye to Aunt’s abusive treatment towards Anna. Beneath it all, I do think Aunt wanted to protect Anna but she was so shrouded by her own self-doubt and fear of magic that it made it difficult to see that. I felt her character was actually far more complex than she initially seemed, but I wouldn’t go as far as to say I felt sorry for her.
Anna, the main protagonist, came across as a bit of a weakling at first. It seemed as though she was never willing to defend herself against her Aunt. But when Aunt’s abuse came to light I understood why she’d held back. At the end of the day, she was a 16-year-old girl whose only family was her Aunt. In those moments, she was truly alone because no one else could protect her from what was happening. Aunt made her bury her emotions so deeply that even to speak felt like a sin. She’d accepted her loneliness for so long that it became a personality trait. At school she was known as ‘The Nobody’ and she took that nickname in her stride. When she became friends with Effie, Rowan, and Miranda, she opened in a way she never had before, and seeing another side to her was refreshing. Finally, she had a backbone! I actually did feel painfully sorry for her, she’d been so sheltered and ‘protected’ her entire life that she hid from others because she thought she had to. Reading as her magic developed and in turn her personality, I ended up loving her character. I felt so proud of her at times that I could’ve jumped for joy.
The other characters, Effie, Rowan, Miranda, and Attis also really shone for me. Effie was a badass and extremely rebellious due to her mother, Selene’s, lack of actual parenting ability. Rowan was funny, and almost your typical teenage girl who enjoyed talking about boys and gossiping. Miranda – I felt she was definitely forced into a religious belief that she had no real interest in being a part of but she didn’t want to upset her parents, so I get it. Then there’s Attis, bad boy energy but an actual sweetheart underneath. The only characters I hated were the popular girls who were downright bullies.
I’d put some trigger warnings on this book: bullying, gore, violence, and abuse. I can see why it dips into the realms of adult fiction, but it definitely read more like YA to me. Honestly, I absolutely loved this book, and don’t hesitate to rate it 5/5 stars. I know, it’s been a while since I last gave a book that rating! I can’t wait to read the next book in the series.