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Reviewed by Ruffina Oserio for Readers' Favorite
The Spinner's Web is the opening book in the Grims' Truth series by authors Isu Yin and Fae Yang, who have crafted an epic fantasy tale that is well-plotted and spellbinding. The story plunges readers into a world with powerful forces at play. The ancients of the land are dying fast while a new breed grows exponentially. A war between the Rebellion and the Royal Council and a disastrous plague plunge the land of Mu into crisis. Against this backdrop, Cruentus Fate, a beautiful young royal, is sold into prostitution. Now in the brothel, she must choose between following the rebellion or the Royal Council. She is haunted by questions about her origins and how she and her brother became entangled with the royals. She finds support from other women in the brothel, and the quest to use a prince to escape opens up a path to another realm.
The Spinner's Web is a complex story that is beautifully told, with deftly written, believable, and sophisticated characters. Readers will root for the relatable protagonist, and the world-building is impeccably written, taking us into a world that follows a pattern of its own, torn apart by conflict and war. The narrative is infused with realism and humanity, and there are moments that readers feel strongly and emotionally connected to the characters. The descriptions by authors Isu Yin and Fae Yang are terrific, and the drama in the brothel is amusing to read. The quirkiness in many of the characters and their unique worldviews amps up the entertainment factor. Themes of violence, war, adventure, prostitution, sex, intrigue, and bravery are skillfully written. The Spinner's Web is a twisty fantasy tale and a page-turner.