C.L. Polk’s Witchmark is set in a fantasy world that’s at like the equivalent of our world’s World War 1, both in terms of its tech (where aether-powered lights are replacing older gaslights, for instance), and in terms of, well, a major war coming near an end.

That’s the setting. The story is about a doctor with a secret past investigating a mysterious death—which involves gathering allies and delving into the world’s political and magical underpinnings. I’m reluctant to say much more than that, because it’d be too spoilery; but thanks to the original world-building, this is an interesting journey to go on.

This is the first volume in a series, but it does resolve satisfactorily without any kind of cliffhanger. (And the second book is out now anyway, as it happens.) I’m actually really curious to see where the second book goes from here, because it doesn’t seem like it could just be more of the same. Highly recommended to fans of fantasy investigations.


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