Reviews

Uprooted, by Naomi Novik

silver_tongue's review against another edition

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adventurous medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.5

fleurir's review against another edition

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adventurous emotional lighthearted mysterious relaxing tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

4.75

kay_andy's review against another edition

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adventurous emotional mysterious fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? It's complicated
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

5.0

wtfwincho's review against another edition

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3.0

2.5/5 Ok sis this book was a ride with a bunch of transitional confusion, unset magical boundaries and poorly resolved character conflict.

Let's start with what I liked, I enjoyed the overall theme, the way the author melded eastern-European folklore and managed to make it seem fresh and even though it had issues it still managed to entertain me.

Having said that:

The first thing that caught me was that romance they tried to push between the dragon and Agnieszka, there was no cohesive and progressive attraction between them, hell there wasn't even warmth between them, Sarkan (the Dragon) was constantly a dick throwing Merriam-Webster insults at her, and she was constantly resentful and lowkey scared of him for the whole dragging her out of her life to basically serve him and learn magic while she was at it. Later in the story, they do magic together and all of a sudden they sorta feel horny for each other. Mind you, this is a teenage girl with a centuries-old wizard man. Long story short, I didn't buy their romance.

We all know that OTP should've been Kasia/Agnieszka. It just makes way more sense in my mind.

Another thing that I struggled with was the transitions between action and normal story building, they were blunt and sometimes required you to go back some pages and see where did all this come from.

The magic lore and boundaries in this book are all over the place, sometimes magic requires a whole deal of effort and concentration mixed with complex or long chants and other times a girl can say a one word spell to summon, at her whim, deadly thunderbolts that killed a powerful chimera monster made from the flesh of a powerful wizard, who btw was a literal master of protection and anti-corruption spells and managed to get corrupted in a moment.

Finally, I was kinda disappointed that they kept the Wood's (the main antagonist) backstory and main fuel of intention at the very end of the story, it just felt awkward and rushed and I think it didn't serve the character very well.

I really wished they'd made this book into two books to further expand on a lot of character interactions I feel were missed.

scottshepard's review against another edition

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5.0

I loved every minute of this book. The characters, plot, world-building and writing style are all just awesome. What more can you ask for in a book? It’s a tight novel, each piece well crafted and supporting the other pieces. There aren’t a lot of hanging threads which is impressive in a world this large. Sure there are a ton of unanswered questions, as there are in any fantasy novel with a completely new world, but none of them detract from the story itself.

The setting kinda goes like this: there’s a deep dark wood on the border between Rosya and Polnya (Russia and Poland). This wood is full of evil forces and malicious beings. There’s a magic that runs underneath and through it, pulsing. There’s a wizard called the Dragon who lives on the edge of the wood. Every 10 years he selects a girl from one of the surrounding villages to come live with him. He usually selects the most beautiful and talented girl, but this time he picks Agnieszka. It’s a very fairy-tale setting and the rest of the novel remains true to it’s fairy-tale roots, being both silly and serious with a strong moral center. Highly recommend for all ages.

aquariusamber's review

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adventurous dark mysterious tense slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

3.5

madpcp's review against another edition

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hopeful inspiring medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.0

caitlinsn's review against another edition

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5.0

This book was fantastic!!! And it just kept getting better and better as I read. It's one of those books that you hug tight when you finish. It's impossible to say anything without giving something away but I adored this book and you should definitely read it. I want to read it again already. I pity whatever book I read next, it is at a disadvantage already. I'm sure this is a standalone book. I'm a fan of standalone books but I would be OVER THE MOON if there was more to come from here. The characters were just too fantastic, the world to amazing, to end here. I hope I hope I hope. *happy sigh*

sleeping_while_awake's review against another edition

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4.0

I was enamored by the first third of the book. It reminded me of Howl's Moving Castle, which I absolutely adore. Sullen wizard and stubborn witch? Check and check.

After the first third, there was a significant shift in the story, and it moves into the real conflict. It moves from the more cutesy young adult book to something more serious.

The story felt fresh to me. Instead of an evil army or another evil wizard, the enemy is the mysterious Wood. It's interesting to plan a strategy against something that is not human.

There is a random sex scene. Well, I suppose it's not completely random, but it did throw me out of the book as the tone just reads younger than what I think was intended. So, Uprooted is not a book for kids then. If you clipped out those two pages, then it might be ok.

I thought the characters were slightly undeveloped. There was a pattern to rush through the events and scenes that it was hard to get to know anyone except Agnieszka. Kasia is a great example of this. She has a major role in the events, but I felt distant from her character.

The Dragon was an interesting character. The relationship he has with Agnieszka later on seems kind of weird.
SpoilerJust ending up with someone that is your mentor...doesn't sit right with me.


However, I liked that the story wasn't overly political. There wasn't the current trend of multiple point of views, which made it more focused. The enemy is interesting, and I liked how at the end everything was explained well.

I liked that Agnieszka used magic in her own way, and that she had an innate talent that couldn't be taught. She require some mentoring, but she was smart enough to figure it out on her own.

Although I like the Temeraire series, sometimes Novik's writing can grate on me. I noticed she is using a lot less semicolon, thank goodness, but many of the paragraphs were overly long. Definitely see an improvement in her writing though.

hopejrc's review against another edition

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5.0

I loved this book. Lots of magic, flawed characters, beautifully written. When I wasn't reading it I was thinking about it and anxious to pick it back up. That's always the mark of a good book for me.