Title: Labyrinth Lost
Author: Zoraida Córdova
Series or Standalone?: Brookly Brujas #1
Publishing Date: 1 August 2017
“I was chosen by the Deos. Even gods make mistakes.
“Alex is a bruja, the most powerful witch in a generation…and she hates magic. At her Deathday celebration, Alex performs a spell to rid herself of her power. But it backfires. Her whole family vanishes into thin air, leaving her alone with Nova, a brujo she can’t trust, but who may be Alex’s only chance at saving her family.”
- genre-typical violence
- kidnapped family
- [Note: there’s probably more, but I didn’t write down the list as I was reading, and…it’s been a couple months]
- bi Afro-Latinx girl MC
- Latinx side character
- sapphic Indian side character
- [Note: …look back to the first note, lmao]
All you need to know about this book is that, outside of Rashani Chokshi, Zoraida Córdova is the only author I found so far that can make a real good love triangle. Anyways, that means I love it.
Labyrinth Lost is the first book in a YA urban fantasy/supernatural series about a young Afro-Latinx girl, Alex, who is also a bruja (a witch). Alex doesn’t see the good in magic, and perceives it as something inherently bad.
So, on her Deathday (where her friends and family come together to celebrate her emerging powers), she attempts a spell in order to get rid of her powers. But instead, her family disappears.
In order to find them, Alex must team up with her friend Rishi and Nova, another brujo. Cue the epic adventure!
I said this at the beginning of the review, but holy fucking shit, this love triangle, y’all. It didn’t feel forced, it didn’t feel like the two love interests are competing for Alex as if she were simply a “prize.” It just felt…good. Depending on how the rest of the books go, I can definitely see myself shipping these characters as a polyam trio. Please, Mx. Córdova, give us the polyam trio we deserve. 😌
Also, I just really love these characters! Alex is such an interesting protagonist for me: she loves her family to bits, but she also hates her magic, which is so important to her family — how can she reconcile these two things? It was really interesting for me to see her struggle with this internally throughout the novel, and I can’t wait to see how this continues throughout the series.
And Rishi and Nova?? They are perfect, too, and they can do no wrong. Seriously, Rishi is such a good friend to Alex, and Nova made me like the “bad boy” trope, which is a feat. I usually hate that trope. Look at what Zoraida is doing, she’s making me like tropes I normally hate. That right there? Pure, unadulterated skill. We love to see it.
Honestly, though, this was such a fun book for me to read! The focus on family was amazing, the love triangle was *chef’s kiss*, Alex’s character development is so good, and! This is just a little thing, but any non-English words that pop up? Aren’t italicized! It’s small, but it makes me smile. So, yeah, overall? This was a wonderful urban fantasy/supernatural book, and I can’t wait to pick up the series when I get a chance!
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