Maelstrom, by Jordan L. Hawk
Series: Whyborne & Griffin, Book 7
Rating: 5 out of 5
I received an advanced copy of this novel from the author in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Between his father’s sudden—and rather suspicious—generosity, and his own rash promise to help Christine plan her wedding, Percival Endicott Whyborne has quite enough to worry about. But when the donation of a mysterious codex to the Ladysmith Museum draws the attention of a murderous cult, Whyborne finds himself in a race against time to unlock its secrets first.
Griffin has a case of his own: the disappearance of an historic map, which quickly escalates to murder. Someone is sacrificing men in dark rituals—and all the clues lead back to the museum.
With their friends Christine and Iskander, Whyborne and Griffin must discover the cult’s true goal before it’s too late. For dark forces are afoot at the very heart of the museum, and they want more than Whyborne’s codex.
They want his life.
This review contains some minor spoilers for Books 1-6 of the W&G series. This book probably shouldn’t be read as a stand-alone… but you should absolutely go pick up Widdershins (Book 1) right now, because it’s ridiculously brilliant!
Whyborne and Griffin have faced some pretty tough enemies, and traveled all over the world in search of understanding the magic and mystery behind their town. But with Maelstrom, Jordan is starting to set in motion some very Big Things in the W&G universe, and I alternated between turning pages as fast as I could, and hiding my eyes behind my fingers as the suspense grew.
I’ve really enjoyed seeing Whyborne’s emotional growth from the first book to the present. Gone is the shy, nervous linguist who hid away in his office and avoided all other people. He’s grown into his magical abilities, and his relationship with Griffin has helped to even him out. But he’s also grown more suspicious, and his changing relationship with his father gives his character a slightly darker twist.
My favorite part is how, after six books filled with crazy adventures, monsters from the Outside, and countless family drama, both men and their friends have become hilariously blasé about any potential threats.
“Jest all you like, but you know as well as I that cases involving sorcery tend to end with a great deal of screaming and blood. Often ours.”
“The screams or the blood?”
“Both.” He sipped his coffee. “Has the morning paper come yet?”
Anyone who has read the other W&G books can expect the same level of anticipation and drama, the same fantastic attention to detail, and more brilliant characters and intriguing mysteries to be unraveled. Background characters and plots from previous novels are brought to the forefront, which I especially loved.
And the suspense! Oh god, I seriously was squirming in my chair towards the end of the book, so terrified of what might happen next. I’m definitely very invested in these characters and Jordan’s gorgeous world, but in this book she really takes her readers on a wild, emotional ride!
Maelstrom is definitely the best W&G book yet, and I can’t wait to see what Jordan does with these characters and this detailed and gorgeous world next! Another excellent addition to the Whyborne & Griffin universe.