Member Reviews

Another beautiful tale (tail?) in the series. This one takes place in London and focuses on Owein possibly becoming a real live boy! Also, there's a wedding and the continued (though painfully stilted) romance of Hulda and Merritt.
It might have been because I haven't read this author in a while, but this book felt a bit more told from other perspectives and I missed hearing as much of Hulda's voice and perspective. The family drama seemed appropriate to the daughters and was well expressed without being overdone.
It was a pleasant surprise that this one was a bit lighter and didn't involve such grim topics as other books in the series.

Was this review helpful?

Another wonderful installment in this series! I really loved getting some of Owein's perspective, and I enjoyed the setting change (England!). It was really interesting to explore Hulda's magic a little bit more.

I can't say much more without spoiling the first two books, but this series is definitely becoming a favorite!

Was this review helpful?

After reading the first two books in the Whimbrel House series last year, I was so excited to receive the advanced reader copy for this book. Seriously, I've been waiting months for this book.

I'm disappointed to say that I've struggled to get into it. This may be due, in part, to the fact I've not been reading much of this genre lately. However, I also feel it's largely a matter of plot and pacing. I'm just shy of the 40% mark on this book and it still doesn't seem to be going much of anywhere. This isn't a DNF for me but I am taking a break. Maybe if I come back to it later with fresh eyes I'll feel differently.

Until then, sorry to say that this book did very little to capture my interest or imagination.

Thanks to NetGalley for the advanced reader copy of this book.

Was this review helpful?

3.75 stars

Thank you to NetGalley and 47North for this ARC!

I was so excited to return to the Whimbrel House world, because I've enjoyed the way Holmberg weaves together cozy historical fantasy with mysterious plotlines and suspense. This book opens up the world even further as Merritt, Hulda, and Owein travel to England at the invitation of Queen Victoria. It was fun to see the expanded worldbuilding and magic, but I did miss Whimbrel House and its other residents, Beth and Baptiste.

I was slightly confused by the main plot choice, though: Chapter 1 continued where the story of Silas Hogwood left off at the end of book 2, and then this was dropped pretty much completely until the epilogue. In the interim, the book followed what seemed more like a sub-plot about Owein. It's not that I didn't enjoy the story -- Owein is a great character, and I liked the murder mystery-esque vibe -- but overall the pacing felt somewhat slow, as if the story had to be stretched out too much for an entire novel and could have been a secondary plot in a book that also focused on the aftermath of Hogwood.

I did appreciate that this book is less creepy than the first two, which really allows the coziness of the series to shine through, and there was also lots of other stuff to love: the continuation of Merritt and Hulda's sweet romance, Hulda growing in her confidence and her magic, and Owein's character development. I hope book four continues all those threads while also bringing us back to Whimbrel House and continuing the story from Chapter 1 and the epilogue.

Was this review helpful?

This book is the conclusion of the Whimbrel House trilogy. It was ok. It was a fast read but it lacked something for me. The first two books I read in one sitting. They were magical, well written, and descriptive. This last book felt lackluster as if it was missing all the magic it was supposed to be about. It felt rushed and the ending was anticlimactic. I was disappointed by the book. I would give it a solid 2.5 stars but since that isn’t an option, I gave it 2 stars. I just kept feeling like there was supposed to be more and it never materialized.

Was this review helpful?

Fun addition to the Whimbrel House series by Charlie N Holmberg.

Taking place across the ocean in the UK, Owein takes center stage as Merritt looses his voice translating. Not only do we get a new mystery to solve, we also gain knowledge into the Lore behind the different magic systems and their origins, and we get to see magical artifacts, new spells and meet new magic users from different disciplines.

I am absolutely looking forward to the next installment.

Thank you, Charlie N. Holmberg, 47North and NetGalley for the early review copies in exchange for my honest review.

Was this review helpful?

In April last year I've stumbled upon Charlie N. Holmberg's book, 'Keeper of Enchanted Rooms'. I've really liked it and it was one of the books that ignited my love for cozy fantasy which lasts to this day.

The series is called 'Whimbrel House' and we get to follow Merritt, who has inherited a house. Sounds great, right? The issue is, the house doesn't want him to leave and appears to be haunted. Hulda, who works in the Institute that deals with Enchanted Rooms, decides to help him tame the bulilding, but has to move in in order to do that.

In the course of the series, we follow these two main characters (and maybe another one?) as their relationship changes and they stumble upon different troubles. It's overall cozy, but has some really creepy and dark themes, too.

The third part, 'Boy of Chaotic Making' was no exception when it comes to my enjoyment. Our characters were in a different setting and there was a new set of mysteries to unfold. I won't spoil the book, as it's a continuation of the series and the things we know are very different to the beginning of the tale, but I really appreciate the themes of trust, found family, living with trauma etc. and the fact it shows that life isn't usually black and white. I also really appreciate that the FMC has traits that aren't that often seen in books and for me, she reads as if she were neurodivergent and I can relate to a lot to her reactions. I also love that the characters are older than the most often seen '18-25' age.

'Boy of Chaotic Making' wasn't my favorite in the series, but I will definitely continue as it honestly feels like home to me.


📖 Comp titles:
✨ Olivia Atwater - The Witchwood Knot
✨ Heather Fawcett - Emily Wilde's Encyclopaedia of Faeries

Thank you to the Publisher and Netgalley for granting me access to the e-ARC.

Was this review helpful?

First, I want to thank NetGalley and the publishers for allowing me to read the eARC of this book.

Charlie Holmberg did it again - another fantastic read. I stumbled across the Whrimbrel House series last year and was one of my first reads by Charlie Holmberg. She has turned out to be one of my favorite authors. The characters are always well developed, the plot is there (her books are more than a romance), the worlds she creates - the reader feels like they are living in it. The third addition to this series is great and I am happy to see the relationship with Merritt and Hulda growing.

Was this review helpful?

Boy of Chaotic Making is book #3 in the Whimbrel House series. Hulda and Merritt are planning their wedding. And Owein is finally adjusting to life as a magical dog. This is all short-lived when a letter from the Queen of England arrives with a proposition for Owein that he can't refuse. This book started a bit slow compared to books one and two. In the first two books, the villain is stated plainly. In this book, other things are equally important. Mainly, Owein's point of view. Which was a nice change. The last few chapters provide a solid conclusion. However, the last few pages end on a cliffhanger. Book 4 is coming soon! Last year I read 7 books by Holmberg and BoCM makes my second one so far. Needless to say, I'm still a fan.

Thank you, NetGalley and 47North, for the eARC!

Was this review helpful?

Ⓑⓞⓞⓚ Ⓡⓔⓥⓘⓔⓦ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

𝔹𝕠𝕪 𝕠𝕗 ℂ𝕙𝕒𝕠𝕥𝕚𝕔 𝕄𝕒𝕜𝕚𝕟𝕘
Whimbrel House - Book 3
𝗖𝗵𝗮𝗿𝗹𝗶𝗲 𝗡. 𝗛𝗼𝗹𝗺𝗯𝗲𝗿𝗴
317 pages
Pub Date: February 13, 2024

Sʜᴏᴿᴛ Sʏɴᴏᴘsɪs
Merritt Fernsby and his fiance, Hilda Larkin, are living life when the Queen of England shows interest in Owein, a dog who has a human spirit. Will her offer prove beneficial to this group?

Mʸ Tᴴᴼᵁᴳᴴᵀs
As with the first two books l, I thought this was a fantastical read. I mean, a dog with a human spirit is given an option he can’t refuse. I couldn’t help but be excited for him.

All of the excitement at the Queen’s castle had me guessing who would be so against the queen’s offer.

The repeat characters continued on as unusual and intense as ever. There is just something comforting about their character. Good people!
Excellent writing, delightful characters, and a plot that ticks right along. I’m hooked for sure.

💕Thank you to NetGalley, the author, and the publisher for providing this ebook for me to read and review.

Was this review helpful?

*thank you to NetGalley and 47North for a copy of this eARC in exchange for my review*

Charlie Holmberg, you have done it again! I am simply dazzled by this story and the continuous development of these characters! I CANNOT GET ENOUGH.

A continuation of the Whimbrel House series, this book follows the life and plight of Owein, now inhabiting the body of a dog. I promise I won’t spoil the plot, but let me just say this: Queen Victoria makes an appearance, and she has magic!

I did not expect the number of things that happen in this book, and for a moment, I was pretty positive that we weren’t going to get a happy ending. But Hulda and Merritt are still the all-star couple we’ve grown to love, and the additional characters in this one had me guessing the whole time. No significant Beth or Baptiste content in this book, but it’s still amazing. I’m hoping we will see more of them in the future. 👀👀

I’m as obsessed with this book as I am with the first in the Whimbrel House series! Note: This series should absolutely be read in order. Do not pass go, do not collect $200 until you have read books 1 and 2. But you should absolutely read this series! It’s so cozy and enchanting!

- cozy fantasy
- “talking” dog 🐶
- royal family has magic??
- confronting fears
- lots of good blushing
- also druids
- “Danger.”
- #IsThisAKissingBook: sizzling kisses, closed door

Was this review helpful?

I do love this series. This is the third (but maybe/ perhaps not the last ?) book in the Whimbrel House series. A very satisfying trilogy but perhaps there may be more, it is hinted at / implied that this may not be the end for these characters. More please ......

Was this review helpful?

I want to give so many thanks to 47North for providing me with an ARC of this book. Boy of Chaotic Making is the third book in the Whimbrel House series, and its expected publication date is February 13, 2024.

Charlie N. Holmberg has been one of my favorite authors for quite some time now. Her writing is always a delight to read, and I love her creativity and imagination. This book was a great addition to the series.

The Whimbrel House books are very comforting to me. They bring me a lot of joy, and I adore the characters. I was thrilled when I learned that this book would heavily focus on Owein. It was nice to see how his story played out. I felt the author did a wonderful job with his character development.

There are so many beautiful moments, especially between Hulda and Merritt. Although some of the characters I loved from the prior books did not play a heavy part in the third book, I appreciated the tidbits of information that were sprinkled throughout - I found the 'cheese' story to be hilarious. I adored that this series has magic coexisting in the current world and it was cool to see places that I recognize being used as the setting. I find the magic system fascinating. Learning and discovering the different layers of magic, what "powers" correlate to each, and the lineage of it, was neat. Just an all-around enchanting story.

There are a few things I didn't love as much with this book as I did in the past two. It was an easy read, a page-turner, but in terms of plot, there's not much. Since the plot was mild, I didn't feel as drawn or hooked as I have been with other books from her. The 'villain' was more predictable than I would have liked. There were parts throughout the story where I craved more depth and less fluff. All of this doesn't diminish the goodness of the book to me, but in comparison to other books from this author or in this genre, I would rate this one a little lower. Still in the 4-star range!

Based on all of this, I would still say this is a great installment in the series and would 100% recommend these books. If you haven't read the first two books, definitely read those first, but don't forget to add this one to your TBR, too! I'll never grow tired of Charlie's worlds.

Was this review helpful?

Absolutely loved!! Loved seeing all the characters again and loved Owein! Loved the mystery vibes this one had. Such a great addition to the series! I can’t wait to see where it goes!

Was this review helpful?

Loved reuniting with the familiar characters and meeting the new ones! Great book. I look forward to reading more from Charlie.

Was this review helpful?

Delightful charming series. Fairly gentle but not a true cozy as bad things happen. Not a book three you should start with but definitely a series worth reading. It’s really grown on me.

Was this review helpful?

Such a cute, cozy continuation of the series. I loved returning to all our old favorite characters as well as being introduced to some new ones. This one was less dark than the previous two, but there was still an element of danger in the whodunnit mystery. I really enjoyed getting Owein's POV. My heart breaks for that poor boy and his struggles. The romance is so cute, and I always appreciate the witty banter. Ihighly recommend this series!

Was this review helpful?

My thanks for the ARC goes to NetGalley and 47North. I'm voluntarily leaving a review.

Genre: Fantasy, Cozy Fantasy, Historical Fantasy, Romantasy, Mystery Fantasy
Spice Level: Medium (fade to black)

You must read the first two in the series for this book to make sense.

We all love the boy turned dog. In this story, we're following both his life as well as Hulda and Merritt. And we get to go to England!!!

I've enjoyed this entire series. This installment has a whodunnit mystery element! Who wouldn't want Owein to get a body—considering all the moral ramifications. He's willing to do what it takes, but he faces more than one dog ever should have to in this quest. Is it the house or someone who doesn't want him and his magic around? I kept going through different scenarios trying to decide who was guilty. You'll have to tell me if you guess correctly. (I feel pretty spiffy because I had my strong suspicions.)

This one wraps up nicely, but the door is open for a fourth book. I'm a fan of the idea of more because this magical world makes me smile. Could we have another possessed house or more with the druids? I don't know, but I'll be there for the ride.

Happy reading!

Was this review helpful?

Boy of Chaotic Making by Charlie N. Holmberg provided to be a cozy and satisfying conclusion to the excellent Whimbrel House series...while still leaving opportunities for additional adventures within this wonderful world.

The further development of both main and secondary characters was a delight, although not without its share of danger, suspense, and tragedy. This series has already read like historical fiction turned on its head with an element of the fantastic and this book did not disappoint.

If you have fallen in love with these characters (or are a bit chaotic and starting with the third book in a series), make sure to pick this one up!

Was this review helpful?

3/5 stars

I am a big fan of Charlie’s work and particularly this series. However, I didn’t love this book as much, I think because the bulk of the book took place away from the house and its supporting characters.

The premise of the book is that Owein is called upon to travel to England. However, once there, Owein begins to have nightmares and mysterious things begin to occur.

I’m not saying anything more because the action begins fairly early. It is a good book - I’m just fond of Whimbrel House.

Thank you @netgalley for the ARC 💙

Was this review helpful?