Ohhhhhhhhh boy. The Wise + the Wicked is like Anna-Marie McLemore meets Noami Novak in contemporary America with cell phones. Lead by a critical despondent broke-ass nihilist with sticky fingers.
Gods, did I love it. Check it out. Read a sample. Enter to win a copy. All below ⬇
About the wise + the wicked:
I received this book for free from Fantastic Flying Book Club in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Title: The Wise and the Wicked
Author: Rebecca Podos
Pub. Date: May 28, 2019
Publisher Balzer + Bray
Genres: Contemporary, Paranormal, Young Adult
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Ruby Chernyavsky has been told the stories since she was a child: The women in her family, once possessed of great magical abilities to remake lives and stave off death itself, were forced to flee their Russian home for America in order to escape the fearful men who sought to destroy them. Such has it always been, Ruby’s been told, for powerful women. Today, these stories seem no more real to Ruby than folktales, except for the smallest bit of power left in their blood: when each of them comes of age, she will have a vision of who she will be when she dies—a destiny as inescapable as it is inevitable. Ruby is no exception, and neither is her mother, although she ran from her fate years ago, abandoning Ruby and her sisters. It’s a fool’s errand, because they all know the truth: there is no escaping one’s Time.
Until Ruby’s great-aunt Polina passes away, and, for the first time, a Chernyavsky’s death does not match her vision. Suddenly, things Ruby never thought she’d be allowed to hope for—life, love, time—seem possible. But as she and her cousin Cece begin to dig into the family’s history to find out whether they, too, can change their fates, they learn that nothing comes without a cost. Especially not hope.
IMHO: the wise + the wicked
- Feels like if Noami Novak wrote contemporary with queers + cell phones
- No dead naming!!!
- Honest ongoing consent talks
- Love how the magic worked with Dov. It’s so easy to be trans* inclusive!!!
- D’awwww the cousin romance misunderstanding
- Ruby’s family is working poor
- Technology included
- Ruby loves science and Carl Sagan
- Ruby is SO relatable. I love her.
- Love how fierce & direct Talia is
- Love CeeCee’s bright style, optimism, and support
- Dov grew on me (that lunch tray scene bugged me, okay?) & adore them as a couple
- Cousin best friends
- Sisters raising sisters
I loved it all right up until the last little bit. They’re all honest flawed kids struggling with magic, history, and secrets. Adults, we really need to be thinking about what we claim to keep from kids “to protect them”. More like make us uncomfortable…
The romances worked on so many levels for me. Too bad we couldn’t see more of CeeCee + boo.
I didn’t want to stop reading and couldn’t wait to pick it up again. Curiostiy was killing. Much like Ruby and her podcast.
The ending & I did not mesh well. I’m with Ruby on this one…Which was the point of course. Like, I get it but it wasn’t satisfying.
I think the kids couldn’t done more during the fight and there’d be more possibilities if we knew more about this wide world.
I think teens will like how it concludes more than us fuddy duddys. And as the days pass and I think about it more, I appreciate what Podos did here. I’m okay with not getting a sequel since it fits so well.
I’ll def be watching for more from Podos. We need so much more of what she’s serving up!
fav quotes from the wise + the wicked:
They welcomes them into this unextraordinary little house, listened to them, counseled them with the gif that remained to the Chernyavsky: the empathetic, righteous rage of women who knew what it meant to have everything taken away from them.
Her cousin’s friends stopped all at once, a school of ish scared by the cry of the Common Loon.
Pearls form around a speck of grit to protect the oyster, and so to protect us from what we can’t yet understand, stories grow around a grain of truth.
It wasn’t really the having that made her feel powerful. It was the taking.
[…] if time is a prize you want to win, you must prepare to lose.
[Her sisters] believed they were safe as long as they were small, as if submission had ever really protected women.
About the Author:
Prize: Win a copy of THE WISE AND THE WICKED by Rebecca Podos (INT)
Start Date: 22nd May 2019
End Date: 5th June 2019