Wundersmith: The Calling of Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend


Series: Nevermoor #2
Source: Purchased
Published: October 30m 2018

Official Summary

Wunder is gathering in Nevermoor …

Morrigan Crow may have defeated her deadly curse, passed the dangerous trials and joined the mystical Wundrous Society, but her journey into Nevermoor and all its secrets has only just begun. And she is fast learning that not all magic is used for good.

Morrigan Crow has been invited to join the prestigious Wundrous Society, a place that promised her friendship, protection and belonging for life. She’s hoping for an education full of wunder, imagination and discovery – but all the Society want to teach her is how evil Wundersmiths are. And someone is blackmailing Morrigan’s unit, turning her last few loyal friends against her. Has Morrigan escaped from being the cursed child of Wintersea only to become the most hated figure in Nevermoor?

Worst of all, people have started to go missing. The fantastical city of Nevermoor, once a place of magic and safety, is now riddled with fear and suspicion…

Star Divider


I was so charmed by Nevermoor: The Trials of Morrigan Crow that I was worried this sequel wouldn’t live up to it.  When someone writes a really dazzling and creative debut, sometimes the rest of the series doesn’t quite live up to it.  I am happy to report that that is not the case here at all. Wundersmith: The Calling of Morrigan Crow is as magical and gripping as I can wish, wild and beautiful and just a little bit dark.  This series will be an auto-buy for me as each new  book comes out.

All the elements that made Nevermoor such a pleasure to read are here, as well: the breathtaking world-building, the enthralling plot, the fabulous cast of characters.  Morrigan herself shines as she continues to find her place in Nevermoor and figure out what being a Wundersmith is all about–even as she struggles with being disliked and thought of as bad luck by the people around her, exactly the type of thing she thought she had left behind at her old home.  The side characters, however, also make the book shine–old favorites like Jack, Jupiter, and Hawthorne, as well as a collection of new characters with varied personalities and incredible magical “knacks.”

Townsend’s books are so lovely and nuanced that I do have one lingering question that I am surprised has not been completely addressed, however: the nature of the Wundrous Society itself (or, Wunsoc).  Clearly part of the romanticizing of the Society comes from Morrigan herself, who is dazzled by the magic and hopes to find a home in Wunsoc.  However, it is clear the Society is highly respected and holds a special place in Nevermoor and…well, I can’t help but thinking that the Wunsoc members are a bit too obsessed with themselves.  Townsend does do a good job of pointing out some of the flaws of the society, but I’m not sure the book deals with the sheer pretension, the idea that these people are essentially a higher class with special privileges and different rules from everyone else.  I’d like to see that explored more in later books and not have it taken at face value that these people are “better” or “more deserving.”

Otherwise, this book comes close to sheer perfection for me.  It’s imaginative and moving and, on top of that, just well-written.  If you haven’t started reading the series, you definitely should, even if middle grade isn’t normally “your thing.”

5 stars Briana

11 thoughts on “Wundersmith: The Calling of Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend

  1. MoMo @ Remnants of Wit says:

    After your review of the first book, I got it for an 11-year-old family friend for Christmas. I read it myself and was really blown away by its quality and imagination! I’m glad that the second lives up to the first (since that almost never happens in my experience)!


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