ARC Review: Emily Wilde’s Encyclopaedia of Faeries or this book is as charming as everyone is saying it is!

Hello people! I hope you all are happy and with a good book keeping you company! Today I am back with a review for a really charming book, so let’s get started!

Thanks to NetGalley and to the Editor. I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

Title: Emily Wilde’s Encyclopaedia of Faeries
Series: Emily Wilde #1
Author: Heather Fawcett
Pages: 336
Publication Date: January 10th, 2023

A curmudgeonly professor journeys to a small town in the far north to study faerie folklore and discovers dark fae magic, friendship, and love, in this heartwarming and enchanting fantasy.
Cambridge professor Emily Wilde is good at many things: She is the foremost expert on the study of faeries. She is a genius scholar and a meticulous researcher who is writing the world’s first encyclopaedia of faerie lore. But Emily Wilde is not good atย people. She could never make small talk at a party–or even get invited to one. And she prefers the company of her books, her dog, Shadow, and the Fair Folk to other people.
So when she arrives in the hardscrabble village of Hrafnsvik, Emily has no intention of befriending the gruff townsfolk. Nor does she care to spend time with another new arrival: her dashing and insufferably handsome academic rival Wendell Bambleby, who manages to charm the townsfolk, get in the middle of Emily’s research, and utterly confound and frustrate her.
But as Emily gets closer and closer to uncovering the secrets of the Hidden Ones–the most elusive of all faeries–lurking in the shadowy forest outside the town, she also finds herself on the trail of another mystery: Who is Wendell Bambleby, and what does he really want? To find the answer, she’ll have to unlock the greatest mystery of all–her own heart.

One of the blurbs on the cover says a charmingly whimsical delight and really this is the perfect description for this book. It really is as charming as everyone out there is saying, and it’s delightful and whimsical. And you are in for such a good time!
Emily is a genius in her field, and she is also quite ambitious: she is compiling the first complete encyclopaedia of faeries, and she won’t be stopped or deterred. She is a woman on a mission, and nothing could intrude between her and her goal. Or this is the idea, at least.
At the beginning of the book, she reaches a really secluded town in the cold and unforgiving north, to study the elusive faeries that live in these places. She knows she would face hardship, because of the climate, the weather, and the rural and secluded nature of the place, but she is on a mission and she is ready. But… she is more of a city dweller, she has no idea of the hows of rural life, and she miscalculated about the people too. She would need their cooperation because she needs them to tell her their stories, especially the ones linked to the folklore, and she knows that, she is aware that she needs the people’s cooperation but… she is not really a people-person, to put it kindly. So pretty soon things start to not be looking up for her and her loyal companion, Shadow, an adorable giant dog.

Lucky for her, that’s the cue for the other MC to appear on the scene. Wendell Bambleby is another folklorist, and her rival (even if, to be honest, this rivalry is more on her part than not a real thing. I am not saying that she is inventing things, because on paper they have a rivalry here: they are both academics in the same field and for the same institution, but he is not really behaving as a rival, and he does not really see the rivalry here), but all and foremost he is a people-person. So while our grumpy and socially awkward but really competent researcher could do some field work, Bambleby can help her on the people part of the work.
And let me tell you that they make an amazing pair. And I am not talking about the romance, I am talking about them as a team. They complemented each other, they are both brilliant and competent in their field (and even if Wendell has an advantage here, we can say that Em is amazingly adept at her work, and she has a really deep understanding of all things faerie) but their best features are quite different, and between the two they cover a lot of ground.
And they are a pleasure to read. Their dialogues are funny and entertaining, and you will find yourself warming toward both of them in no time!

But the picture would not be completed without mentioning the other characters. Sure, Em and Bambleby have the scene and won’t let that go, mind me, but we have some really interesting characters moving around them, and even if I would have appreciated maybe a bit more of them around (not more characters, but a bit more of development or screen presence, as to speak), they were great all the same. Shadow the giant dog, Poe the small faeries, and all the inhabitant of the little town.
And the plot was interesting, it moves along nicely and the pace is just the right one for it. We have some darker part, and some funnier ones, too, with some action and all you can ask for this kind of book. It really was a charming and delightful read, and it is also a well balanced book all around. There is a lot to like it, but to me the best parts were Em and Bambleby (but I think you guessed this!) and the way in wich the story is told, since it is written as entry in Emily’s journal (with some contribution from Wendell, even if they were sparce, and I would have loved for more!).

If you are in need of something not too demanding, charming, with good characters and good dialogues, and if you want to take a trip into fairyland well… you can’t go wrong with this one!

And what about you? Have you read this book? Or are you thinking about it?? Let me know!!

Happy reading!


9 thoughts on “ARC Review: Emily Wilde’s Encyclopaedia of Faeries or this book is as charming as everyone is saying it is!

  1. Pingback: JANUARY WRAP-UP!

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