Fiber art magic brings Bolivian-inspired fantasy to life in Isabel Ibañez's debut novel ... Woven in Moonlight — appropriately — weaves a beautiful spell that takes culturally specific details and spins them into an engaging fantasy world. There is nothing generic about the land of Inkasisa ... My favourite touch may be the glossary of food terms at the end of the book, where each dish is lovingly described ... Nuance is something that Woven in Moonlight seems to care about very deeply. What beings as a clear-cut tale of a girl seeking revenge and restoration for a generation of wrongs soon blossoms into something much more quicksilver and subtle.
I’ve been waiting my whole life to read a book that takes the Andean history of the Spanish and Inca, and transforms it in a fantastical setting ... It’s refreshing to see her faults and the promise of her strength as a character. Her only solace is her brand of magic ... There are some things that Ibañez handles with great care. The binary of good and evil is thwarted and at often times left unresolved. The reader is never spoon-fed the answers on who to root for because that isn’t Ximena’s path ... Some of the best moments are when Ibañez lingers in Ximena’s exploration of the castle and the people she gets close to ... With gorgeous magic, a strong narrative voice, and a satisfying finale, Woven in Moonlight by Isabel Ibañez opens up a whole new world for readers and is a debut author whose career you want to watch.
...a glittering and richly drawn story ... Readers will half expect to look up and see a finished tapestry, shimmering with moonlight, after they finish a passage detailing her handiwork ... Natural slower periods in the storytelling are equally as entertaining with skillful worldbuilding, mouth-watering food writing, and, of course, Ximena’s beautiful weaving ... this novel is full to the brim with heart.
I’m dying for more, not just because of the richness of the culture within the story, but those food descriptions will leave you hungry and wishing you were a citizen of La Ciudad. The story features some strong female characters that I couldn’t get enough of by the end, and a sweet love story to go alongside it ... you won’t want to miss out on Woven In Moonlight ... this story will pull you in…from the moment you start reading ... The magic system in this story is fascinating ... I did love the pacing in this story, it’s not too fast, but it keeps readers wanting to keep turning the page.
Woven in Moonlight is a nuanced and empathetic fantasy inspired by Bolivian folklore, history and politics ... Ximena is a kind and strong protagonist ... Touching on ideas of restorative justice in a unique and vivid setting, Isabel Ibañez delivers a confident, subtle and inspiring debut about what it takes to move a divided society forward.
Inspired by Inca and Bolivian history, Ibañez highlights how hatred and prejudice lead everyone down the wrong road ... With sword fights, damsels, vigilantes, magic, and betrayal, this thoughtful novel should have broad appeal.
A rollicking political fantasy ... Atoc doesn’t hesitate to torture or kill his enemies, which can make some scenes hard to stomach. Secondary characters get short shrift, but readers won’t think twice as they immerse themselves in the story. A refreshing, page-turning debut.
Debut author Ibañez creates a complex story, pairing an intriguing, subtle layer of magic with the deftly handled political intricacies. Ximena’s development as a strong, justice-oriented young woman is compelling ... Packed with action, this engrossing novel encircles its protagonist with an array of secondary characters, each with the potential to be both friend and foe, creating tension, momentum, and a dash of potential romance. Readers will root for Ximena.