Review: Defy the Night by Brigid Kemmerer

Series: Defy the Night #1
Author: Brigid Kemmerer
Publisher: Bloomsbury YA
Released: September 14th, 2021
Received: Own
Warnings: Epidemic, suicidal thoughts, torture, hanging

4 kitties

Fans of Brigid Kemmerer must have been SO excited to hear the announcement of her newest series, Defy the Night. Personally, I’ve never read anything by her (her backlog is on the list! I swear!), but I just couldn’t resist this beautiful cover and title. And I am so glad that I decided to dive right in.

They say that every war has two sides. But what about a war fought within the same kingdom? The kingdom of Kandala is falling apart. People are dying in increasing numbers due to a disease, while those with money can access all the medicine they could ever want.

Tessa Cade is an apothecary apprentice, and her heart goes out to the people of the kingdom. She’s done everything in her power to help save their lives, including risking her own to give them the medicine they need.

Meanwhile, there’s Prince Corrick. He’s universally hated and feared by the people, as he is the King’s Justice. We all know what that means. Yet, he walks a fine line to keep his brother safe.

“I think that very few people truly deserve what they get, Tessa.” He pauses, and for the briefest moment, sadness flickers through his eyes. “For good or for bad.”

I fell in love with Defy the Night from the moment I saw its cover. Seriously, it’s stunning. I opted not to hunt down a special edition (well, unless you count the B&N version), as I loved the original so much. (I also got the preorder pin, and it is sooo pretty!)

Defy the Night is split into two perspectives, Tessa and Corrick. As one might imagine, their perspectives are wildly different, but that added so much to the story. It also gave us a better grasp of what was happening in the kingdom, especially surrounding the epidemic and resulting medicine shortage.

This novel also had the perfect balance of developments: character development, romance, political intrigue (which quickly turned into a whole different scenario), and more. I loved that balance and hope to see more like it in the sequel.

Yes, a sequel! This is the first in a series, and I honestly have no idea what will happen in the next book – but I can’t wait to find out! It’s going to be a little bit of a wait there, though. Unfortunately.

About Liz (AKA Cat)

I am an avid animal lover, photographer, reader, and much more. While my photography blog is feeling a bit neglected at the moment, the other sites I'm involved in are going strong. ✧I review books, comics, and basically anything else in the literary world over at Quirky Cat's Fat Stacks (of Books). ✧I review comics and books, as well as write content for Word of the Nerd. ✧I review comics for Monkeys Fighting Robots. ✧I write content for Screen Rant and CBR. ✧I write book reviews for The Review Crew.
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