Into the West by Mercedes Lackey : Review

Baron Valdemar and his people have found a temporary haven, but it cannot hold all of them, or for long. Trouble could follow on their heels at any moment, and there are too many people for Crescent Lake to support. Those who are willing to make a further trek by barge on into the West will follow him into a wilderness depopulated by war and scarred by the terrible magics of a thousand years ago and the Mage Wars. But the wilderness is not as empty as it seems. There are potential friends and rapacious foes….

….and someone is watching them.

As someone who has been a massive Mercedes Lackey fan for well over 20 years now, I can’t help but feel like I get a little too excited and set my expectations way too high every time there’s a new release. Because every time I start a new Herald of Valdemar book I always worry that this is going to be the book that disappoints me or doesn’t live up to my expectations for some reason. Into the West by Mercedes Lackey as so damn good that I don’t think I have the words to properly express just how much I loved this book. I spent my entire day off reading it and then spent the next day rereading it just to make sure I didn’t miss anything the first time through.

Normally when I finish a book I like to sit down and take some time to think about what I liked or didn’t like about said book and why, but that just wasn’t necessary with Into the West. It took maybe three chapters before I knew that this would finally be the book that would replace Owlflight as my favorite book in the series and I knew exactly why I loved it as much as I did. There is just this amazing sense of exploration and adventure to this book and I loved every damn minute I spent reading it. Exploration stories are usually my favorite type of story and Mercedes Lackey did an amazing job giving us such a story with Into the West.

I just loved reading about Baron Valdemar and all his people as they slowly explore westward in an attempt to find a new home for their people. It was honestly just so much fun having to stop reading every once in a while to wonder if that creature they were just fighting was a Wyrsa or if we had just met the people of Lake Evendim for the first time. I don’t know how a book can feel so new and exciting, yet manage to be oddly familiar at the same time but Into the West managed it.

This is definitely a book I would not hesitate to recommend to anyone looking for something new to read, though I would highly recommend people start with Beyond first so they aren’t too confused. Then I would suggest anyone who hasn’t done so go back and read all the rest of the Valdemar books because they are all great reads.

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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