Floodtide by Heather Rose Jones is the fourth book in the Alpennia series. As with the other three books in the series, Floodtide is set in Ms. Rose’s historical and magical world of Alpennia. In this tale we meet Roz who has just been fired as the laundry maid without a character reference to help her find a new job. She is now totally alone in the city of Rotenek with nothing to her name but the clothes on her back, and no place to go. This is very dangerous for Roz. A young homeless woman with no protection roaming the streets is in serious jeopardy. After several days she luckily ends up at the home and dressmaker shop of Mefro Dominique and her daughter Celeste. With the help of Mefro Dominique and the patronage of the royal thaumaturgist, Roz is apprenticed to the dressmaker. Not only does she learn dressmaking skills, but she helps Celeste who happens to have a talent for magical charms. This becomes very important when the river that divides the city floods and brings the dreaded river fever that could kill thousands. It is possible that only Roz, Celeste, and their young friends can save these lives through magic…if they dare.
This is an excellent historical fantasy novel. Since it is set in a world that has already been used in other stories, there was no real need for world building. It has already been done. The story flows well and the characters are real for the time period and the world they live in. I connected with Roz and her friends, though there were times in the story that I wished Roz would mature a little faster than she did. The only real problem I had was the number of characters in the book as a whole and trying to keep up with their names. That is a problem I often have with fantasy stories, but this one wasn’t too bad. I found that as long as I paid attention to the story, I could figure out who was who. I really enjoyed the novel as a whole, so that wasn’t too hard.
This is my first novel in the Alpennia series, but I chose to read it anyway. This is an independent story, set in the same world and with some of the same characters as the other books in the series. This can be read as a standalone book. Those of you who have read the other novels will enjoy seeing a few characters you know from those books as minor characters here. I enjoyed the book even without reading the others. I will be getting the earlier novels since I’m now invested in this world and the characters I’ve met. This book could be shelved as Young Adult, but don’t let that stop you from reading this.
I received an ARC from NetGalley and Bella Books for an honest review.