“There are always challenges, she told me. In every generation – yours, mines, the ones who came before and the ones who will come after – there are those who want things to be different and those who want things to stay the same.”—Venom and Vow
Anna-Marie McLemore has done it again. They have written a world so detailed, so lush, that I was totally and utterly sucked into completely, and won’t forget any time soon. Beyond the world building, though, Valencia and Cade are heroes that you want to win, even when they are fighting one another.
I am not typically one for fantasy without romance, especially not YA fantasy, however, Venom and Vow was fast paced with enough intrigue and action to keep me engaged.
Oh, and the representation in this book! Latinx inspired, with a good amount of Spanish words sprinkled throughout; Cade, a transgender prince and Valencia, a bigender dama to the princess. Oh, and they are both disabled! The overwhelming message throughout this book is to be true to yourself.
Thank you to Turn the Page Tours for including me on this tour!
“Asking for all of me to be acknowledged like this seems like asking him for the moon and all the accompanying stars.”—Venom and Vow
Title: Venom & Vow
Author: Anna-Marie McLemore, Elliott McLemore
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends
Release Date: May 16, 2023
Genre(s): YA Fantasy
Buy Link: https://amzn.to/44e6jFB
Keep your enemy closer.
Cade McKenna is a transgender prince who’s doubling for his brother.
Valencia Palafox is a young dama attending the future queen of Eliana.
Gael Palma is the infamous boy assassin Cade has vowed to protect.
Patrick McKenna is the reluctant heir to a kingdom, and the prince Gael has vowed to destroy.
Cade doesn’t know that Gael and Valencia are the same person.
Valencia doesn’t know that every time she thinks she’s fighting Patrick, she’s fighting Cade.
And when Cade and Valencia blame each other for a devastating enchantment that takes both their families, neither of them realizes that they have far more dangerous enemies.
“I know the way only others like us can know each other.”—Venom and Vow
Anna-Marie McLemore (they/them) writes stories as queer, Latine, and trans as they are. They are the author of William C. Morris Debut Award Finalist The Weight of Feathers; Wild Beauty; Blanca & Roja, one of Time Magazine’s 100 Best Fantasy Novels of All Time; Indie Next List title Dark and Deepest Red; Lakelore, an NECBA Windows & Mirrors title; and National Book Award longlist selections When the Moon Was Ours, which was also a Stonewall Honor Book; The Mirror Season; and Self-Made Boys: A Great Gatsby Remix. Venom & Vow, co-authored with Elliott McLemore, is out in May 2023 from Feiwel & Friends, and their adult debut The Influencers is forthcoming from Dial Press in 2024.
Los trovadores sing of how their people are as pale as the winter moon and as deep as the clearest summer night, and every shade of wheat and sand and earth brown in between.—Venom and Vow
Elliott McLemore is a nonbinary trans guy who comes from mountains and loves trees. As a child, he romped in dresses, fought with plastic swords, and dreamed up his first stories. Between then and now, he has focused on academic and professional writing, research, and advocacy, including work toward adding nonbinary gender markers to California identity documents. Venom & Vow is his debut novel.
Whenever you see someone, it’s foolish to assume they haven’t seen you.—Venom and Vow