Saint (Fable #0) by Adrienne Young #bookreview #YA #adventure #fantasy

New York Times bestselling author Adrienne Young returns to the world of The Narrows with Saint, a captivating prequel to Fable and Namesake.

As a boy, Elias learned the hard way what happens when you don’t heed the old tales.

Nine years after his lack of superstition got his father killed, he’s grown into a young man of piety, with a deep reverence for the hallowed sea and her fickle favor. As stories of the fisherman’s son who has managed to escape the most deadly of storms spreads from port to port, his devotion to the myths and creeds has given him the reputation of the luckiest bastard to sail the Narrows.

Now, he’s mere days away from getting everything his father ever dreamed for him: a ship of his own, a crew, and a license that names him as one of the first Narrows-born traders. But when a young dredger from the Unnamed Sea with more than one secret crosses his path, Elias’ faith will be tested like never before. The greater the pull he feels toward her, the farther he drifts from the things he’s spent the last three years working for.

He is dangerously close to repeating his mistakes and he’s seen first hand how vicious the jealous sea can be. If he’s going to survive her retribution, he will have to decide which he wants more, the love of the girl who could change their shifting world, or the sacred beliefs that earned him the name that he’s known for―Saint. 

Fable and Namesake were two of my favorite reads over the past couple years. But if there was ever a character I wanted to know more about, it was Saint, Fable’s father. This book was worth the wait.

My first impression of Saint wasn’t good in Fable. He’d just lost his wife, and he abandons their teenage daughter on an island filled with thieves and little food. The guy certainly wasn’t in the running for a Parent of the Year award. Eventually the reader learns that Saint never does anything without reason, and his moves are strategic. Pieces are revealed about his life with wife Isolde, but this prequel fills in the gaps and answers many questions I had about both characters. It starts at the beginning of their epic love story.

All I knew of Isolde was from Fable’s memories of her, so I loved meeting the actual character. She’s a privileged wealthy girl who’s on the run from her gem dealer mother, Holland – and with good reason. Love isn’t the driving force behind her mother’s search for her. Holland’s only interested in how Isolde (a dredger and gem sage) can increase her wealth. Isolde is brave and spirited, but also a little naive on her own in the real world. Believing she’s found a way to disappear, she soon learns she was deceived and is about to be sold to a trader.

Saint is on the verge of finally receiving his trader’s license and fulfilling his father’s dream for him. He wants to help the Narrows by pushing back again the wealthy traders in the Unnamed Sea and certainly doesn’t need the distraction of a beautiful girl – no matter how much he’s attracted to her. When Isolde takes refuge on his ship, he’s determined to help her keep her freedom. Primarily cold and calculating in the Fable books, meeting Saint before Isolde’s death really humanizes him and explains his demeanor.

The action sequences are nail-biters, and the scenes on the high sea are so vivid I could almost smell the salt air. I was delighted at the mention of West (a character in the other books) near the end. My ARC was an audiobook, and the narrators did an excellent job. If you’ve read the Fable series, don’t miss this prequel. But I recommend reading those books first.

I received a complimentary copy of this audiobook from the publisher through NetGalley.  Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

24 thoughts on “Saint (Fable #0) by Adrienne Young #bookreview #YA #adventure #fantasy

  1. How I didn’t realize that this book is about Fable’s father is a huge mystery to me. The cover, the title…I can tell I’m burning the candle at both ends to not put it all together. Now, I have to read it! Do you think it would be weird to take a book and read in WDW parks? 😂

    Liked by 1 person

      1. You know, when the Gilmore Girls special 4 episode thing on Netflix originally came out, we were at Disney and I watched it on my phone at Magic Kingdom while we were waiting 🤣 so I definitely could handle a book!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I love stories that are set on the high sea! While I get seasick at the least bit of motion, I can still dream about sailing on ships to wild adventures. This sounds like a great read. Thank you for sharing, Teri!

    Liked by 1 person

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