cover image The Witch King (The Witch King #1)

The Witch King (The Witch King #1)

H.E. Edgmon. Inkyard, $18.99 (432p) ISBN 978-1-33521-279-5

Technomagic, queer activism, and an extremely online trans protagonist sparkle in this wisecracking, intimate #OwnVoices debut. Three years ago, Wyatt Croft’s uncontrolled magic started a murderous wildfire, and he fled the fae kingdom of Asalin for Texas. Now 17 and out as a gay trans man, having escaped the persecution that Asalin’s witches face, Wyatt, who’s white, resents being dragged home by Emyr North, his “nearly obsidian” royal fiancé and former friend, to marry and secure the throne against a rival upstart. Wyatt and his asexual best friend Briar (who is Seminole and Diné) are quickly swept into a grassroots witch movement as well as a dark deal with Emyr’s rival for Wyatt’s freedom. But Wyatt’s bond with Emyr hasn’t died, and it may change everything. Edgmon’s ebullient debut depicts a variety of trans perspectives with tender sensitivity, and quintessential walking disaster Wyatt’s self-deprecating humor, punk glee, and surprisingly level head are vividly lovable. Despite the book’s occasional stumbles into social media didacticism, readers will adore this revolution-tinged celebration of trans joy, which refreshingly builds its conflict without jumping for trauma tropes. Ages 13–up. [em]Agent: Rena Rossner, the Deborah Harris Agency. (June) [/em]