Will I Like This Book? – A Study In Drowning by Ava Reid

Okay, so the title of this book isn’t very me, but when I saw Ava Reid, I knew I had to check this preview out. This is the final sample from my YALC selection, and it’s definitely one that I’m excited about, even though it’s coming out very late next year. Specifically, A Study in Drowning is coming out from Del Rey on 5th September 2023.

I can’t provide preorder links for this book yet as the book isn’t online yet. But I’ll definitely be shouting on social media for people to preorder this one when they can.

This book is being advertised as a book for fans of faeries, romance and dark academia. I’m not the biggest dark academia fan, but I’m definitely excited to see how Ava Reid handles this aesthetic. I think her writing is going to work perfectly within this story, and I’m very excited.

Architect student Effy Sayre has been called many things, from a liar and a tease, but above all that, she’s a survivor. When Effy sees a competition to design a house in memory of her favourite author, Emrys Myrddin, she knows this is her destiny. While others believe his stories of the Fairy King are fiction, she knows he is real. When she arrives at the town where Myrddin lived, she meets a young academic who is determined to prove that he was a fraud. Effy winds up working with the academic as dark forces work against them as they try to discover truths that could ruin them both.

There’s a line on the back of the sample that says:

“If the monsters are real… So are the women who defeat them.”

A Study in Drowning – Ava Reid

Holy hell that intrigues me.

Effy was a very interesting protagonist. She’s intelligent and determined but being an architect isn’t her dream. But women aren’t allowed in the literature college, so that’s the highest she’ll ever be able to improve. But Myrddin is her favourite author, and building a house in his memory? That she can do. She wins the chance to do so pretty early in this book, and the sampler ends before she begins her journey.

This story is clearly going to be pretty dark. Poor Effy is being bullied due to a relationship she had with her mentor within the college. A mentor who actually seems like he was taking advantage of her. It made me feel a little sad and sick, and I’m glad that Effy is clearly getting away from that.

I didn’t get to meet the potential love interest. You’re just introduced to his name as he’s taken all the books on Myrddin out of the library, but I’m definitely curious about him. They both go to the same college, and I’m wondering whether they’ve run into each other before. Does he know about her, and if he doesn’t, how will they meet?

The writing of this sampler was already beautiful, and I’m so excited to see how this book is going to go. The Wolf and the Woodsman had a strong start, but this sampler already has me way more excited than the first two chapters of that book did.

I think this book is definitely one of my most anticipated reads of next year, and I really can’t wait to read it.

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