Drowned Country is the the stunning sequel to Silver in the Wood, Emily Tesh’s lush, folkloric debut. This second volume of the Greenhollow duology once again invites readers to lose themselves in the story of Henry and Tobias, and the magic of a myth they’ve always known.
Even the Wild Man of Greenhollow can’t ignore a summons from his mother, when that mother is the indomitable Adela Silver, practical folklorist. Henry Silver does not relish what he’ll find in the grimy seaside town of Rothport, where once the ancient wood extended before it was drowned beneath the sea―a missing girl, a monster on the loose, or, worst of all, Tobias Finch, who loves him.
Thanks to NetGalley for providing me with a copy in return for an honest review.
This review contains spoilers for book one of the series.
An excellent follow-up to Tesh’s lovely Silver in the Wood. While the first one spent a lot of time building up the world of the Greenhollow and the relationship between Tobias and Henry, this one is a bit more plot focused with the two, now broken up, having to work a case together (and don’t worry, that information is page one, so not a spoiler).
There were several things I thought Tesh did well here. First was the case itself/the main story line which starts with the characters hunting one creature and ends with something completely different. The multiple different mythologies came together well to create a unique whole. I enjoyed expanding on the history of the Greenhollow and Tesh’s imagery effortlessly brings the different landscapes to life.
Second, I appreciated that Henry was handling being the Wild Man very differently than Tobias did. This made sense not only due to their personalities but also the amount of time they had each, respectively, spent in the role.
Third was the romantic drama. I liked that Henry and Tobias handled the difficult situation of working together like adults instead of constantly descending to snipping at each other like bickering school children, as is seen in many other books with a “we used to date now we have to work together” situation. The reason they broke up was also sensible and fit their characters.
Last was the ending. Despite most of this book being rather melancholy, Tesh ties the duology up with a happy ending that fits the rest of her story both in tone, characterization, and logic. I would have happily read more stories of Henry and Silver being “practical folklorists,” but was also very satisfied with the ending.