Review: Emily Wilde’s Map of the Otherlands (Emily Wilde #2) by Heather Fawcett

Emily Wilde’s Map of the Otherlands (Emily Wilde, #2)Emily Wilde’s Map of the Otherlands by Heather Fawcett
My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Emily Wilde’s Map of the Otherlands is the much anticipated sequel to Heather Fawcett’s runaway Cozy Fantasy hit, Emily Wilde’s Encyclopaedia of Faeries.

I was swept away by the first book and was beyond ready to be back with Emily, Shadow and Wendall Bambleby on another cozy, magical adventure!!

In this story, Emily and Bambleby have returned to Cambridge, and to their roles at the University. Emily’s Encyclopaedia has come to fruition and she’s currently working on a new project, a map of the Otherlands.

In the wake of their time in Hrafnsvik, Emily now knows the truth of Bambleby’s heritage. Summarily, that he’s an exiled faerie king on the run from his murderous mother, but he also is desperately searching for a door back to his realm.

When magical assassins arrive at Cambridge, and attack, looking for Bambleby, Emily is swiftly dragged into another fae-filled adventure.

They set their sights on a picturesque destination, the Austrian Alps, where Emily believes they will finally be able to find the portal. They hope they’ll be able to set Bambleby free, once and for all from his mother’s menacing grip.

They’ve brought along some additional traveling companions this time, Emily’s niece, Ariadne, and Department Head, Dr. Rose, which added to the fun.

But if you’ve read the first book, you know Emily, she’s not exactly a people person, so let’s just say, these new additions may be more by folly than gracious invite.

Nevertheless, along with the ever faithful Shadow, all these individuals, with vastly different personalities, make for a humorous and greatly-engaging traveling group.

While I still loved the adventure and the cast of characters, this one did lose some of the feel of the cozy atmosphere that the 1st-book captured so well; at least for me.

Obviously, the setting is very different, so that was the main culprit, but also the stakes were a lot higher. It felt more dangerous and at times I was at the edge-of-my-seat with worry for these characters, particularly, Bambleby.

The way this kicks off, it happens very quickly. There’s no quiet build like in the first book. This felt more like being shot out of a cannon in comparison.

Even so, in the context of the story, it does make sense. The setting of Cambridge is more dynamic, just in its general nature, and there’s a lot happening for our characters in the aftermath of the first book.

We also have a larger cast of characters affecting the narrative. I did love our new additions though. Both Ariadne and Dr. Rose grew on me greatly over the course of the story and I loved seeing Emily’s reactions to their presence change over time as well.

In fact, IMO, Emily does soften a bit over the course of this story, which actually filled my heart to see. She’s still the same feisty, determined woman she’s always been, but perhaps with a bit more room in her world for others.

With all this being said, I loved watching this story evolve and I came to a realization by the end, it was still Cozy. This time however, the coziness came from the relationships, not the setting as much, and I thought that was brilliant.

I absolutely recommend this series. If you enjoyed the first book, you need to pick this up. You’ll walk away even more in love with these characters than you were before.

Thank you so much to the publisher, Del Rey, for providing me with a copy to read and review. I am looking forward to more adventures with Emily Wilde!!

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