I didn’t have particularly high expectations of this book, which may be why I love it so much, but seriously, it’s amazing. There’s interesting characters and wonderful relationships and loyalty and magic and ugh. I think Uprooted was really well-written, and I really liked how it ended.
This book is about a girl named Agnieszka and a wizard named the Dragon. Every ten years, the dragon comes to Agnieszka’s village and takes a girl to bring back to his tower with him. I know that sounds weird–it is, don’t worry about it. Anyway, he only takes girls born in October, and Agnieszka is one of those girls, but so is her smart, beautiful, funny best friend, so she’s pretty confident she won’t be the one taken to the tower.
Naturally, she is.
It’s called foreshadowing, and Naomi Novik has mastered it.
So, Agnieszka is taken to the Dragon’s tower, and he’s a real jerkface for awhile, but then he’s like, alright, I guess I should teach you magic now, because she held this flame, which apparently makes you a witch.
I mean, why not?
Anyway, so they start off pretty simple, just things like dealing with her clumsiness and making her clothes pretty. Basically, Agnieszka goes to the Dragon’s library every day and is like
Which is fun and all, but it’s not until the Dragon leaves the tower that she really starts to come into her power. The torches that signal her village needs help go up, so Agnieszka’s freaking out and trying to figure out how to get down there, since the Dragon is occupied. Anyway, so she makes a rope out of her old dresses and goes to her village, where she catches up with her buddy Kasia and her parents.
The torches went up because one of the village members was corrupted, so Agnieszka turns him to stone. (I personally think that was dumb, but whatever.) Corruption comes from the Wood, which is a forest that is living, kind of, and when people go in it, they go mad, but sometimes if you go close enough, it sort of comes out. I don’t know, it’s hard to explain, but the Wood=evil.
When the Dragon comes back, he’s really mad at Agnieszka because she very politely stole all of his potions and used them randomly. In her defense, she was in a panic. But it’s okay because the Dragon gets mad at her for everything. They’re cute.
Uprooted is about Agnieszka discovering her abilities, with the help of the Dragon, and gradually falling for him, too. They’re very special about it, because they’re firmly on the “I hate you” side of things, but also they keep randomly kissing??? They’re fun.
Their first kiss was after they cast their first spell together, and it was perfect. They were creating the illusion of a garden, and it was beautiful and descriptive and wonderful, but then Agnieszka started laughing, and she broke the spell. So the Dragon called her an intolerable lunatic and kissed her.
It was very awkward because I was reading this in public, like, at school, and then I just started having a complete meltdown in math class, and I truly pity the girl who sits beside me because I am INSANE.
Yeah, so this book is flawless, and I hope you all read it and love it. (It should be mentioned that the Dragon’s actual name is Sarkan, and his name has a taste. In Agnieszka’s opinion. Pretty sure she described it as “fire and unfurling wings.”)
(This review is more words than there are pages in this book. I never write long reviews, oh my goodness.)