Friday, 7 September 2012

ARC Review: Crewel (Crewel World #1) by Gennifer Albin

Crewel (Crewel World, #1) 
Author: Gennifer Albin
Series: Crewel World
Pages: 368
Genre: Young Adult – Dystopian
Publisher: Macmillan Children's Publishing Group
Pre-order Amazon: Crewel
Release Date: 16th October 2012

Synopsis. (Goodreads)

Incapable. Awkward. Artless.

That’s what the other girls whisper behind her back. But sixteen year-old Adelice Lewys has a secret: she wants to fail.

Gifted with the ability to weave time with matter, she’s exactly what the Guild is looking for, and in the world of Arras, being chosen as a Spinster is everything a girl could want. It means privilege, eternal beauty, and being something other than a secretary. It also means the power to embroider the very fabric of life. But if controlling what people eat, where they live and how many children they have is the price of having it all, Adelice isn’t interested.

Not that her feelings matter, because she slipped and wove a moment at testing, and they’re coming for her—tonight.

Now she has one hour to eat her mom’s overcooked pot roast. One hour to listen to her sister’s academy gossip and laugh at her Dad’s stupid jokes. One hour to pretend everything’s okay. And one hour to escape.

Because once you become a Spinster, there’s no turning back.

REVIEW: 4 out of 5 stars

Crewel by Gennifer Albin is the first book in the Crewel World series and was kindly provided to me by Netgalley for Macmillan Publishing.

Crewel was a book I needed savor so I could fully appreciate the society, politics and characters in a more thorough way. I was riveted by the amazingly detailed world Ms. Albin has created and to be completely honest, I am still a tad clueless but keen to know more.

Sixteen year-old Adelice Lewys has been gifted with the unusual ability to embroider the fabric of life but she has been taught by her parents over the years to hide what she can do. Unfortunately, when it comes time for spinster testing she inadvertently slips up and shows the guild her talents for weaving time.

Being chosen as a spinster is a coveted role which provides beauty, privilege and stability and also the ability to manipulate the world around you which is regulated by The Guild, a controlling group of men who have power over pretty much everyone and everything enforcing the compliance of the rules, it also means your life will no longer be with your family.

Adelice was a likeable heroine and her time training to be a spinster was often fraught with danger and despair; she grew for me as a character throughout this novel and the growth she experienced made her more believable in her actions and reactions. I just wish she could have understood her ability and differences sooner than she did as there were numerous hints thrown her way, in this sense she came across as naïve and quite innocent.

We have two love interests, Josten and Erik and whilst both were interesting and likeable in their very own way I feel they were under developed and the whole love-triangle unnecessary, they also weren’t as forthcoming with information as what they could have been.

The secondary characters were each diverse; a few I found to be quite surprising but others completely untrustworthy where I questioned their motives. I especially liked Loricel, the Creweler who was a great provider of information whilst I found Maela and her power trip to be extremely frustrating.

What a complex yet intriguing world Ms Albin has created with Crewel, I thoroughly enjoyed many aspects of this book and although at times I found it to be confusing and predictable it was also unique amongst the other books in the YA genre out there but in saying this, I needed to know more, especially how the spinsters came to be; I found a few details to be lacking and I hope a few loose ends are tied up in the next installments.

I enjoyed Ms Albin’s clever writing as well as the entertaining plot which had many twists and turns that made for an exciting read. Despite me having a few qualms about the intricate world it was engrossing and kept me wanting to unravel the many secrets and know more about the society in which they live.

Overall, Crewel is a book that made me think – in a good way, it was complex, original and kept me riveted, it definitely stands out amongst other dystopian novels with its unique spin on a futuristic world. I will definitely be picking up the next book in the Crewel World series.


  1. Brilliant review Sharon. I can't wait to read this book, it looks completely amazing!

  2. I really enjoyed this review, hun! I based my decision to read this on the US cover but I didn't actually know much about it but now I feel like I do! I like the sound of Adelice (prett name, too!) and I can't wait to read this now :)

  3. Ooh, character growth! You have me intrigued, Sharon! I really cannot wait to start reading this one. :)

  4. I've heard such amazing things about this book! And the fact that there's character growth makes it so much better! :) I love character growth; awesome review Sharon! I'm glad you enjoyed this one :)

  5. There has been such a hype for this book! I am really excited to read it because the intricate world that has been created. Plus, dystopians are really becoming more original and fascinating as time goes on. I can't wait to see how Crewel adds to the evergrowing pile of dystopians being released within the next few years.

    Angie @YA Novelties

  6. I love the cover for this one and I am eager to dive into the world created by Albin-great review!

  7. Weaving time you say? That certainly sounds intriguing! I'm very glad to hear that the world is so very well developed- it always annoys me when a futuristic/ dystopian novel doesn't provide enough details about the setting, society and political situation! The cover is beautiful too! Sounds like I need to get me a copy of this pretty! Thanks again for a fantastic review darling!!!


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