The Waking Land by Callie Bates

Title: The Waking Land
Author: Callie Bates
Published: June 27th 2017 by Del Rey Books
Buy: Amazon : Goodreads

Lady Elanna Valtai is fiercely devoted to the King who raised her like a daughter. But when he dies under mysterious circumstances, Elanna is accused of his murder and must flee for her life.

Returning to the homeland of magical legends she has forsaken, Elanna is forced to reckon with her despised, estranged father, branded a traitor long ago. Feeling a strange, deep connection to the natural world, she also must face the truth about the forces she has always denied or disdained as superstition powers that suddenly stir within her.

But an all-too-human threat is drawing near, determined to exact vengeance. Now Elanna has no choice but to lead a rebellion against the kingdom to which she once gave her allegiance. Trapped between divided loyalties, she must summon the courage to confront a destiny that could tear her apart.


The Waking Land is an interesting story about magic that draws you in. With revolution at hand, there is a lot of political and history in play.

For the most part I really liked Elanna. I thought it was really interesting that she displays signs of Stockholm Syndrome but it makes sense. I liked how at first she is very dedicated to the her kidnappers but then starts to see the truth of the situation. You don’t see this explored that often. Most of the time the heroine stands her ground and wants to escape. Elanna actually has affection for the King because he has taken care of her all this time. She doesn’t see herself as a political prisoner.

About 70% of the way I got really really frustrated with Elanna. I didn’t understand the, we need these people to help us, the only way they will help us is if I talk to them….I’ll just stay right here because that’s the right choice. What?? What?? It’s really only that chunk of the book that she irritated me.

Victoire is a character that I wish there was more of. She’s a great friend and strong female. I would loved to have had along for more of the story.

I really enjoyed the magic and that it has a great connection to the land. The wedding the land part was a little interesting. I wasn’t sure what I thought about how she has to wake the land. I also felt like every time they talked about it, it just seemed strange. I did like the idea of the land being a part of her and needing it as much as you need lungs to breathe.

I loved Jahan and the relationship between Elanna and him. I enjoyed their fun and cute exchanges and I liked his character. Although we do learn much about him, I still felt a little more could have been revealed.

I also find politics in Fantasy interesting because despite an author creating their own world. There still has to be rules just like any society. So it’s always interesting to learn about and explore those. I also liked learning about the old ways and how many of the people adapted to their rulers. Old customs become alter versions as they try to blend.

I liked the story, there were some things that I wasn’t completely sure about but overall I did enjoy the characters and plot.
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About Jen S

I love books, tea/coffee(by the gallon) and sour candy. I wear my nerd badge with pride and have two children ages 5 and 3 that keep me on my toes.
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