About the Book:
Title: Into the Heartless Wood
Author: Joanna Ruth Meyer
Publisher: Page Street Kids
Release Date: January 12, 2021
Genre: YA Fantasy
Epic, heartbreaking, and darkly atmospheric, Into the Heartless Wood is the story of impossible love between a monstrous tree siren and a boy who lives at the edge of her wood.
The forest is a dangerous place, where siren song lures men and women to their deaths. For centuries, a witch has harvested souls to feed the heartless tree, using its power to grow her domain.
When Owen Merrick is lured into the witch’s wood, one of her tree-siren daughters, Seren, saves his life instead of ending it. Every night, he climbs over the garden wall to see her, and every night her longing to become human deepens. But a shift in the stars foretells a dangerous curse, and Seren’s quest to become human will lead them into an ancient war raging between the witch and the king who is trying to stop her.
*I received an e-arc in exchange for an honest review*
I don’t even know where to start, or how to compose myself and write a review. This book was heartbreakingly beautiful from start to finish. If you know me, it’s no secret that I absolutely love Joanna’s books. I’ve been a fan ever since I won an arc of her debut, Beneath the Haunting Sea. Her writing is just so brilliant. It’s lush and lyrical, and draws you in from the beginning. I was completely and utterly bewitched with this story about a tree-siren and an astronomer’s son enthralled with the stars in this gender swapped Beauty and the Beast.
The setting for this book is the dark, mysterious, and magical Gwydden’s Wood that surrounds the kingdom of Tarian. The wood is known to lure men and women to their deaths with siren song. The witch there has harvested souls to feed the heartless tree and uses its power to grow her realm. Owen Merrick is an astronomer’s son that lives at the edge of the wood. He’s been taught to avoid the woods and that they’re dangerous. In fact, his father built a wall at end of their property to keep the woods out. One day he is lured into the woods and one of the witch’s tree-siren daughters, Seren, saves his life instead of taking it. Owen begins to climb over the wall each night to see Seren and a beautiful relationship ensues. Seren yearns to be human the more time they spend together, she does not want to be a monster. They soon find themselves drawn into an ancient battle between the witch and the king who is determined to stop her.
I loved Owen and Seren. Throughout their journey they explore what it means to be human. The ability to love and have compassion and be creative are some of those things. They also show us it’s in the choices that we make. I also adore Owen’s little sister, Awela. She’s absolutely adorable and adds a sweetness to the story.
I strongly urge you to add this amazing book to your TBR. Definitely be excited! This just may be my favorite book from Joanna yet. I definitely have a book hangover now! It will be releasing in January 2021. In fact, the final cover is still to be revealed, and I am absolutely chomping at the bit to see it. I’m sure it’s going to be gorgeous!
About the Author:
Joanna Ruth Meyer is the author of the critically-acclaimed Echo North, as well as the companion novel duology Beneath the Haunting Sea and Beyond the Shadowed Earth. She writes stories about fierce teens finding their place in the world, fighting to change their fate, save the ones they love, or carve out a path to redemption.
Joanna lives with her dear husband and son, a rascally feline, and an enormous grand piano named Prince Imrahil in Mesa, Arizona. As often as she can, she escapes the desert heat and heads north to the mountains, where the woods are always waiting.
Joanna is represented by Sarah Davies of Greenhouse Literary.