Member Reviews

Pirates of the Caribbean fans, rejoice! This book is everything you ever wanted. With a rich magic system and a lush world of seafaring escapades, you will root for Mary and Sam with every bone in your body.

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Thank you to NetGalley, Titan Books, and the author, for the opportunity to read an eARC of Dark Water Daughter in exchange for my honest review!

I found DWD to be incredibly captivating with its unique setting, lore, and complex characters. I loved that it had dual POV and some "Pirates of the Caribbean" vibes!

My favorite part of this book has to be the setting: The Winter Sea.

<I>"The Winter Sea was poised on the edge of true winter, the long season--eight months of the year--where only ships with ghistings and Stormsingers dared to challenge the waves."</I>

It's not often that you read a sea-faring book that takes place in such a frigid climate. Usually these books are much more tropical and warm, but the Winter Sea is tempestuous, violent, and ice cold. You could really glean the dangers that came with navigating these treacherous waters.

I really, really enjoyed this book and I think anyone with a strong affinity for the fantasy genre and pirates will love it as well. I can't wait for the send one!

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Thank you to netgalley and the publisher for providing me with an arc of this title in exchange for this honest review.

Sadly i didnt get to finish this book, since i was in a slump and the arc expired. What little i managed to read was really great though. Ill update this review once i get around to finishing the book.

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3.5 stars

I liked the unique idea of a book about pirates in a cold climate. I enjoyed the plot and the twists later on in the story. It wasn´t perfect - I already feel the details of the story getting fuzzy, but I do like the writing style of the author and will definetly read from this author again.

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Dark Water Daughter is the first book in the Winter Sea series. While I did enjoy this book, it did drag a little in the middle and I felt that the female main characters powers could have been explored more. One of the main strengths of this book was the magic system and I just feel like it could have been more detailed. The characters lacked a little depth, but were generally well written. Overall it was good and I would recommend checking it out, but areas lack some depth and detail.

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Cool worldbuilding and a fun plot is what I expected from this book, and it did not disappoint. I loved this swashbuckling adventure!

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I really wanted to like this, so maybe my hopes were too high because I really struggled with this story. It had a lot of great elements like unique magic and pirates and plotting and all kinds of political intrigue, but I was pretty bored with the book overall. I had to force myself to keep going when all I wanted to do was put it down and read almost anything else (except classics, I will never voluntarily read any more classics). Keep in mind this could easily be a case of me and not the book, maybe I was just not in the mood for it. The story had a very slow build, with lots of characters and world building going on, setting up what I expect to be a series full of sea politics and magic. I am sure others will really enjoy this story, it was just not for me

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This is going to be a next big movement in the genre. For a while it was paranormal romance, then we went through a dystopia phase, and finally the sexy fairy phase. Pirates are the next big thing.

I loved this story. I followed H. M. Long on tiktok for quite a while, and listened to her describe this novel for months. I finally got around to reading it in the last week. And wow. It was really really good.

My favorite thing about this book is the magic system, that I didn't fully understand, but it was unique and fresh. Most stories I've read had very predictable magic, but Dark Water Daughter is a gamechanger.

My second favorite thing is the slow burn attraction between Mary and Samuel. It was completely obvious that they had a thing, but the story wasn't focused on their relations. It was focused on their individual journeys intersecting with one another.

5 🌟

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Featuring magic, pirates, betrayal, and redemption Dark Water Daughter is the first book in H.M. Long’s The Winter Sea Trilogy.

Mary Firth is a Stormsinger, a woman who can quiet the wildest of storms, or whip them into a hurricane, with just the power of her voice. Like her mother before her, Mary’s fate is to be lashed to the mast of a ship, commanded to assure the crew’s safety while at sea, but Mary refuses to be anything but the centre of the tempest.

From the very first pages, Dark Water Daughter heralds action and adventure with Mary, in search of her mother, narrowly escaping the gallows only to be sold to a brutal pirate lord. On the high seas among pirate ships and naval armada, battles rage and monsters lurk in the deep, while on land, deals are made, and broken. Mary escapes one pirate only to make a deal with another, and the drama continues to unfold through intrigues and treasure hunts, betrayals and vengeance. It’s a well crafted, exciting plot that moves at a fast pace.

As for Long’s magic system, it’s creative and interesting, though often quite dark. Epigraphs between chapters taken from fictional tome’s provide definitions or explanations that help to build and give substance to the world. The Dark Water, also known as the Other, is an ethereal place, beautiful but deadly. There are mage and magni, sooth’s and ghistings, who are spirits that dwell in trees in Wold’s, harvested usually unwillingly, to inhabit the figureheads of ships.

Mary quickly realises her choice is to sink or swim as she’s introduced to life on the high seas. I thought the growth of her character was well handled. She’s a little naive, having lived a largely sheltered existence, but she learns quickly. She’s determined to do whatever it takes to save her mother, whether that be sing or fight. She proves to be smart, resourceful and brave.

Samuel Rosser, a disgraced Navy Officer and seer with an uncontrolled ability to trespass on the Dark Water, provides a second point of view in the narrative. Unfortunately I didn’t particularly warm to him though I can’t exactly articulate why. His tragic background, including his twisted relationship with his twin brother, should elicit sympathy, but I found it wearying. I personally prefer my leading men to have a bit more vigor.

Of the similarly themed pirate fantasy books I’ve read recently, Dark Water Daughter is the more atmospheric and dynamic. I’d certainly like to read the next book in the series.

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I absolutely knew I was going to love this book, it had me at pirates and highwaymen, I won’t lie! I just didn’t realise quite how obsessed I was going to be with this book until I was a few pages into the first chapter and I knew it was about to become my entire personality for the foreseeable future!

You know when you’re really enjoying a book so you want to binge read it in one go but you also want to make it last as long as possible and savour every page? That was me with this book and I was so sad to finish it even though it was a masterpiece from start to finish!

I’m weak for pirates anyway, but I couldn’t stop thinking about this book every time I put it down and I was always itching to get back to it because the world building and magic system was phenomenal! It was so unique and imaginative and everything came together perfectly throughout the book, like you could easily see how much thought and care had gone into creating the world!

I just loved the lore and the stormsingers and the gistings, it suited the pirate vibe perfectly and I loved getting little extra tidbits of worldbuilding along the way with all the book extracts throughout, not to mention Mary’s past sprinkled in too!

The opening chapter sucked me in with the action and how genuinely atmospheric it was, and this was kept up throughout the entire book! It never failed to be riveting and utterly atmospheric, I’m in love with the writing style it really pulled me into the world!

The characters were intriguing, I loved both Mary and Samuel! Mary was such a badass and I loved watching her grow in confidence and take what she wanted, and she and Samuel both had interesting backstories that I had a lot of fun trying to figure out! Their banter was on point too and the romance is definitely a pitch perfect slow burn!

I loved the supporting cast just as much as Mary and Samuel too, like I need to see Charles redeem himself and I need more of Eli’s adventures! I loved Athe too!

The pace was perfection, there’s the right balance between action and character development and there’s so much intrigue to keep you reading! Things are beautifully set up and clues are dropped throughout until the explosive finale, I genuinely have nothing bad to say about this book it’s one of the best ones I’ve read all year!

I loved how everything wrapped up so well with just a dangling thread or two for another adventure in the sequel, which I’ll be impatiently awaiting!

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I'm a big fan of books with a pirate theme and this book did not disappoint! It had Pirates, magic, pirate hunters, unlikely alliances and mystery!
I would definitely recommend this exciting book and will be keeping my eyes peeled for the next one!

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I will be coming back to this book when I am in the right head space: for now I was not able to finish it unfortunately.

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If you are looking for a gripping fantasy book with a barely there romance subplot, but isn’t just a romance book disguised by a fantasy background, this is the perfect book! And with pirates and a unique magic system and great world building, it truly gripped me the whole story! I think some plot points could be difficult to follow at times but overall I understood most of the story and raced through it. Great book!

Thanks NetGalley and the publisher for an ARC of the book!

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Completely binged the hell out of this book. As soon as I finished reading I recommended it to my shop and we had it in. Gripped from start to finish. I loved the characters but the plot was definitely my overall favourite. Can't wait to read more from this author.

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Thank you NetGalley and Titan for giving me an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

I love books about women that are pirates, it just has that special spark and excitement within it. This book was nowhere near short of that, and I really enjoyed reading it. Full of adventure and darkness, the plot is addictive, however occasionally it can be a little disjointed with the many points of view. I liked the definitions or facts within the world at the beginning of each chapter, as if you were learning about this place, which really added to the world-building. I also loved the side-plot of a slow-burn romance, adding depth into the story and characters.

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Rating: 4.25 / 5 💙

Dark Water Daughter is a high seas Jacobean adventure with unique magic and a hint of romance. The captains wear tricorn hats and ladies wear elaborate dresses with petticoats (unless you're a pirate because they all wear trousers) all the while fighting with their cutlass swords and muskets.

The magical system and world is different from others I've read so far and very intriguing. The book transported me to the Winter Sea where pirates rule the waters and Stormsingers tame them. The story was consistently building through the early parts of the book and didn't get boring at any point, but I did wonder where it was going sometimes.

If you're looking for a romantasy, this isn't it. At least, this first book isn't. There was interest between the main characters, but that was about it. Don't let that stop you from reading the book though because it was fun. I enjoyed reading about the magic system though some of it wasn't explained until later in the book. If you're into pirate fantasy, high seas adventure, a different magical world and a swashbuckling good time... This book is for you.

Thanks to @netgalley and Titan Books for the early copy!

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So after reading and loving The Adventures of Amina Al-Sirafi, I was like yes give me more pirates and thankfully we were blessed with Dark Water Daughter by HM Long.

I was a little worried because I was seeing the word romantasy thrown around with this book and we all should know by now, I have a heart of cold steel.

I’m joking, I just don’t like kissy kissy, smoochy smoochy.

This story reminded me a lot of Pirates of the Caribbean, if you miss those movies from your childhood, I recommend grabbing a copy of this. It begins with an execution and this is where we first get to experience our main characters magical power, she is a stormsinger, or a weather witch, she can control the weather through her singing. Stormsingers have been treasoned so if found out, it’s down in the poo poo pits for you. Well her power allows her to escape. But she’s not alone, she has a handsome companion with her, a disgraced naval officer and we see them journey on the high seas as escaped prisoners together on a beautiful ship but of course with many obstacles ahead of them. They have to stand together against a common enemy and that is an infamous pirate.

The vibes here, the aesthetic surrounding this made my heart super happy. I love cold winter enviroments, I love nautical piratey stories thanks to Assassins Creed Black Flag. This was so cinematic, some of the fight scenes were brutal, it is adult so keep that in mind. I found it to be paced really well from introducing us to the characters and world, how the magic worked and it’s purpose in the universe. I really loved this. It’s a very fast read. I can’t wait to read the sequel, I need some answers after some big reveals.

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I was loving this book right up to the ending.
I love the world H M Long creates. The winter seas the magic I belt as is had been transported there.

I have seen sone reviews say there is a romance plot in this and I don't think there is. Maybe for future books but not for this one.

The plot was engaging. I load the idea and the Villa was well fleshed out. However. The felt rushed and almost too easy for the main characters to defeat said villain. I sent as is instead of the characters using their wits to defeat it was written to that point and came across to easy and rigid.

Otherwise I was really enjoying the book! The writing is easy and loved the characters.

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thank you to netgalley for the advanced reading copy of Dark Water Daughter. I loved H. M. Long since i first heard another book on audio from netgalley. This was amazing and so well done.

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This book was so good!! 5 stars!! No notes!! (Just kidding, I’ll give notes).
Dark Water Daughter is our first installment on a swash-buckling pirate adventure! This book is a dual POV following our primary main character, Mary, and a secondary character, Samuel. Mary is thrust into an unknown world of pirates, their greed, and their shellfish motives. She is known as a storm singer, which basically is someone who controls the weather, and it is a coveted magical gift that all ship captains want to have aboard. Mary’s talent was hidden to protect her from anyone wanting to take advantage of her gift, but thing clearly go awry when she is attacked while traveling. Samuel is known as a Sooth (he can see/find magically gifted people by searching for their aura) and his only goal is to protect Mary and save her from murderous pirates.
This book has no smut or spice!! There is a lot of pining, which was great. The Magic system is so fun and unique. I am definitely in my pírate era because I loved this book just as much as the last pirate book I read this year. Long does an amazing job fleshing out characters and really making you fall in love with them. The adventure never stops in this book. Just when the dust settles, the next wave of the adventure hits you.
Again, 5 stars, no negative notes! I will be picking up the next book in the series along with other works by H.M. Long.

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