Free Reading Group Guide: Heart of Mist
Today’s post is something a bit more fun and resourceful. Heart of Mist is the hottest new release in YA fantasy, and the author, Helen Scheuerer, is currently touring blogs to promote her debut novel, Heart of Mist (The Oremere Chronicles #1). I am designated to write a review, but I thought, “what better than to involve the reading community?”. We can all have a little fun discussion the newest releases!
This is the start of the new blog series– I’ve always wanted to kickstart my own bookclub! 🙂 This will be the start to many bookish discussions, which will most likely migrate to my new booktube channel (y’know… when I
eventually make one).
In a realm where toxic mist sweeps the lands and magic is forbidden, all Bleak wants is a cure for her power.
Still grieving the death of her guardian and dangerously self-medicating with alcohol, Bleak is snatched from her home by the Commander of the King’s Army, and summoned to the capital.
But the king isn’t the only one interested in Bleak’s powers.
The leader of an infamous society of warriors, the Valia Kindred, lays claim to her as well, and Bleak finds herself in the middle of a much bigger battle than she anticipated.
Heart of Mist is the gripping first book in The Oremere Chronicles, a fantasy series of epic proportions.
Here are some bookish questions I thought would be fun to discuss, which were inspired by LitLovers (I love their resources!).
- Did this book remind you of any other series?
- What format did you read this in? eARC, printed, etc.
- Were you hooked from the first sentence, or did it take you a while to get “into” it.
- How do you feel about a YA fantasy discussing themes such as grappling with addiction? Is this a good or bad reflection for teens to read into?
- Whose side did you like more (initially): the King’s Army or the Valia Kindred?
- Was there any plot twists that surprised you?
- Besides addiction, were there any other themes/notions you thought were prevalent in this book?
- If you had to ask Scheuerer a question, what would you ask?
- Do you think the ending was satisfying?
- Would you reread this book?
If you’re not already convinced to check out this gorgeous fantasy debut, check out the prologue to Heart of Mist that Wonderfully Bookish originally published:
The branches of the canopy were like springs beneath the balls of her feet, making her lighter than air as she leaped from one tree to another, towards her freedom. None of the sentries stirred. She knew how to use the dark cloak of night to her advantage. She was no more than a shadow, flickering with the rest in the dappled moonlight. She wove through the branches like a ghost, leaving the sleeping keep, her family and her future behind. When she got to the outskirts of the forest, she dropped down onto the soft earth and ran. Although she had rigged the guard changes, it wouldn’t be long before they realised she was gone. She sprinted. Her feet barely touched the damp ground as she darted between the lean trunks, her breath forming small clouds before her in the cool night, her dark hair sticking to her face. She had the build of her kind: tall, lean and corded with muscle. A body that had been pushed to the limits of endurance, moulded by a strict regime of discipline, forced to fight with blade, arrow, spear and fists. She was meant to be a leader, a warrior, a queen of the Valian people, but she couldn’t be. Not when there was another choice.
Each thought pummelled into her, spurring her on, while branches stung her face and the wind tore through her leathers. Too soon, she was at the border. All that marked the end of their territory was the mist. It rolled in slow, thick waves, stopping abruptly at her feet, as though an invisible fence kept it contained. It rose up into the sky, as far as she could see. A seemingly impenetrable wall. Beyond it was more mist.
The young woman tugged off one of her leather gloves, letting it drop to the ground. She stretched out a hand into the shifting mist. It escaped between the gaps of her long fingers, and a cool sensation crept along her skin. Magic. She could feel it pulsing before her. The air in there was different, people said, thinner, unbreathable. Slowly and steadily over the past few decades, the mist had encroached, inch by inch, thirsting for more life, more magic. Those who went beyond it fell off the face of the realm.