Title: Julia Vanishes
Author: Catherine Egan
Publication Date: June 7th, 2016
Publisher: Doubleday Canada
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
“I look my nightmares in the eye. And if my nightmares should look back, they see nothing but shadow.”
Julia has the unusual ability to be . . . unseen. Not invisible, exactly. Just beyond most people’s senses. It’s a dangerous trait in a city that has banned all forms of magic and drowns witches in public Cleansings. But it’s a useful trait for a thief and a spy. And Julia has learned–crime pays. Her latest job is paying very well indeed. Julia is posing as a housemaid in the grand house of Mrs. Och, where an odd assortment of characters live and work: A disgraced professor who sends her to fetch parcels containing bullets, spiders, and poison. An aristocratic houseguest who is locked in the basement each night. And a mysterious young woman who is clearly in hiding–though from what or whom? Worse, Julia suspects that there’s a connection between these people and the killer leaving a trail of bodies across the frozen city. The more she learns, the more she wants to be done with this unnatural job. To go back to the safety of her friends and fellow thieves. But Julia is entangled in a struggle between forces more powerful than she’d ever imagined. Escape will come at a terrible price. – Excerpt from Goodreads.
This book was wonderful and sadly it looks like it is going to be an underrated gem.
How does this book have under 500 ratings on Goodreads?!?!?!?! Seriously? Where is the hype on this one!!!! I remember hearing about this book earlier this year on most-anticipated lists on bloggers sites and by Booktubers but then when it was released the hype just went away for some reason. It’s a shame really because this is a SOLID start to a fantastic fantasy series. Yes, it is a bit of a slow burn at first. I think that was necessary though, I appreciate an author who takes the time to let us know the characters and builds the world around them. I wasn’t bored through-out it at all and that says a lot because I was going through a major reading slump at the time.
Julia, the main protagonist is awesome. I loved that they didn’t treat her as a special little snowflake that everyone wanted and made her so high above the rest. No, she had a talent, and other people she was around had talents too and they were all showcased and all needed. It worked well. I also loved that although there was a romance present, she has a boyfriend at the beginning and another love interest is introduced to us in a small way, it is far from the focus. Julia’s boyfriend is not the most amazing man in the world, it’s not all mushy and lovey-dovey. I wanted to kick him in the head most of the time. It was actually kind of refreshing to see the boyfriend not taking on the typical bland, boring boyfriend role. He was mostly just a jerk. I thought the chemistry between the main character and her brother was great, they leaned on each other for the right things at the right time (well usually). Loved that Julia didn’t do everything alone always and the side characters weren’t just there as props for her. They actually were needed and helpful.
I don’t have really anything to say about this book but good things. One of my fave reads of this year and I will be continuing happily with the series. The only reason I didn’t give it five stars is because it was a first book in the series and they can take a bit to get going. Catherine Egan is an author to watch in the future I think!