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Storytelling was outlawed. Magic had all but vanished.

That all changed when the woman in black came to town.

Branded with the black stamp at a young age, Brent thought he would end up a vagrant like his father. His craft was telling stories, but the Order had long forbidden any weaving of tales. When Brent sees the woman in black, she leads him into a menagerie of tunnels beneath the Earth where his life falls into the nauseating, but beautiful, mist of the dead.

He finds friendship in Rho, a young woman who hides her face with a tree branch while roots and vines bow to her every whim. Together, they embark on a journey to explore the world, escape the watchful eyes of the Order, and discover the woman in black’s secrets.

For thousands of years, the mist and the tunnels were under the sole guardianship of the Council of Mist Keepers. But as new monsters enter the mist, and magic is forced out of the shadows, the Council searches for young blood to join their ranks and Brent’s next in line.

Content warning: This audiobook approaches issues of sexism, prejudice, and mental illness, and includes mentions of death, violence/sexual assault, adult language, alcohol use, and psychological abuse/trauma.

©2020 Elayna Barrison (P)2021 Elayna Barrison

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  • D.F. Matthews
  • 10-10-21

A Powerful Story!

This is a well written fantasy about the power of stories and books. The characters are brought to life by the incredible narration, drawing you deeper into a well thought out and charming world. I can't wait for more!

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  • Emily
  • 24-06-21

Confusing but Worthwhile (Mouth Sounds Beware)

This book is one of the few books about storytelling that isn't distastefully self-congratulatory. It's such a hard needle for a storyteller to thread without just being gross *cough Game of Thrones finale cough* but The Mist Keeper's Apprentice had a deep love for stories without being pretentious about it. I really enjoyed that.

I found this book pretty confusing at times. I struggled to follow one event to the next, and I found time difficult to track. I wished Brent's family had been in the text more or had been less important to his motivations because that felt kind of unbalanced. The audiobook reader was mostly good but oh boy there were some Mouth Sounds that I didn't love.

But I also loved the tonal twist about The Woman In Black. That was delightful. The main characters were all likeable, though Brent spoke to me least.

Despite my confusions, I'm definitely excited for book 2. I think the story will really be hitting its stride, and I don't regret my time investment.