Title: The Severed Land

Author: Maurice Gee

Series Number: 1

Publication Date: January 30, 2017

Genres: Fantasy

Where I received the book: I received a copy of this book from Penguin Random House NZ to review.

Star rating:★★★

Summary: From the high reaches of a tree, Fliss watches the soldiers attempting yet again to break through the invisible wall. Amid the explosions, a drummer boy tries to escape. As he is about to be shot, Fliss reaches through the wall and pulls him to safety. But Fliss is dismayed to find she has saved an overfed rich boy. She is even more dismayed to learn that she must accompany him back through the wall on a special mission to rescue the Nightingale.

The world they have to travel through is a perilous one, full of predatory thieves, slave masters, beggars, dippers, mudlarks, drain-sliders, spies and wall-men. It is a world where the ruling families are caught up in a lethal power struggle.

Will Fliss and the despised drummer boy learn to trust each other? Who is the Nightingale? And will they all make it back alive?


the severed land starts off as slow and a little boring, but once the world has been introduced, everything picks up pace. i wish this book was longer so that there could be more worldbuilding and the events didn’t feel so rushed. there also wasn’t much room for character development.

i really didn’t like kirt/keef. i found him boring, plain and really annoying. i wish he wasn’t a main character as i found him hard to connect to. fliss was an amazing heroine. she was interesting and strong headed. i loved the other characters who come in much later on. they’re funny and highly relatable. i’d definitely read a book that solely centres around them. (that’s how much i enjoyed them okay).

overall, i really enjoyed this book. i thought i wouldn’t by the end of the first chapter as i was put off by the writing style and how slow it was. i’m glad i continued it (i mean, it’s not a particularly long book anyway). i think this book is more suited for younger readers (more middle grade aged), however there are a few moments that MG readers shouldn’t read. it’s a bit confusing to try and pinpoint an age group for this book.

thank you penguin random house nz for sending me a copy to review

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