Book Review: THIS WICKED FATE by Kalynn Bayron

Genre: Fantasy (Contemporary)
Age Range: YA
Star Rating: 4 stars
Series: yes - second book in duology



How much would you risk to save the ones you love? Would you tempt even the most dangerous fate?

Briseis has one chance to save her mother, but she’ll need to do the impossible: find the last fragment of the deadly Absyrtus Heart. If she is to locate the missing piece, she must turn to the blood relatives she’s never known, learn about their secret powers, and take her place in their ancient lineage.

Briseis is not the only one who wants the Heart, and her enemies will stop at nothing to fulfil their own ruthless plans. The fates tell of a truly dangerous journey, one that could end in more heartache, more death. Bolstered by the sisterhood of ancient magic, can Briseis harness her power to save the people she loves most?

Blurb taken from Goodreads. Add to your shelves here.


There are a lot of Greek Mythology retelling/reimaginings out there in YA fantasy, but the plant-based magical slant and use of the lesser known myths around Medea really help this duology stand out.

The mythology is much more apparent in this book. THIS POISON HEART felt like half Greek Mythology remix and half The Secret Garden reimagining, but THIS WICKED FATE is absolutely 100% a Greek mythology remix. There are gods appearing and being various shades of unhelpful for one.

Bri has a month to find the final part of a six-piece division of a mythical man-turned-into-a-plant or her mum dies permanently (thankfully, she found one in book one, and some presumed dead relatives have the other four.) Except the other side are also looking for it, and it means finding a mythical island long lost.

Continuing the theme of using the lesser known parts of the myth, lesser known theories for locations are used here. It helps give the book a different feel by not travelling to the parts of the world that we associate with those myths. It let the book give the setting a pretty ominous, secrets-filled atmosphere (whereas I think many of us associate Greece itself with too much sun and tourism for that to work as well.) The fact that it’s lesser known only adds to the air of forgotten and rewritten myth.

THIS WICKED FATE is a very short book (barely scraping over 300 words) which does help if focus down on the quest to find the final piece of the heart. There are a lot of betrayals along the way from minor side characters uncovered as they try to find the location. It does feel a lot like a treasure hunt, hunting a lost treasure with old forgotten stories.

The story is tied up neatly with the end, but there are certain world building hints (particularly around Hades) that feels like there would be space for spinoffs set in the same world.

Read my reviews of other books by Kalynn Bayron:

This Poison Heart (this series):


2 thoughts on “Book Review: THIS WICKED FATE by Kalynn Bayron

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