Book Review: Drowned Country (The Greenhollow Duology Book 2) by Emily Tesh [Audiobook]

Henry's been living alone in his crumbling house for over a year when his mother writes him asking for help with a missing girl. Seeing Tobias again only compounds his loneliness, and he makes a rash decision that lands himself, Tobias, and the missing girl in the dangerous land of Faery.

Book Cover - Drowned Country by Emily Tesh
Title: Drowned Country
Book Number: Book 2
Pages: 160
My Rating: 4 Stars


This was another interesting, unique sort of book. This one had less of a fairytale feel and more of a solid novel feel than the first book, but it still had an atmospheric, fairytale-esque story. I’ve come to appreciate the light and airy way these books are written and how it contrasts so nicely with the slightly darker and heavier elements.

The sweet romance thread was continued in this one, though I was frustrated that it took so long to get to the explanation of what happened between Henry and Tobias. The first book ended with the implication that they’d be together, and then this one started with them decidedly not together, and that confused me. I couldn’t feel the longing or emotion between them because I didn’t understand it, wasn’t even sure what it was that was between them. But I felt for Henry once I did understand, and I don’t think it’s a spoiler to tell you not to worry because there is ultimately a happy ending. And this ending, while not explored in-depth, feels more solid than it did in the first book (that one felt very open-ended to me). Also, it’s so darn cute how Tobias likes when Henry reads to him not because he likes the stories but because he just loves to listen to Henry’s voice.

The POV was switched to Henry’s this time, and that was a good choice. It was more his story this time. And it was nice getting to know him a bit more.

I listened to the audiobook for this, and the narration by Matthew Lloyd Davies was yet again perfect. He sounded natural and made the story so engaging. Characters were easy to tell apart, their voices suited them, and Matthew’s narration and voice choices really brought them to life. I don’t often specifically recommend audio over text, but I really recommend the audiobooks for this duology.

To be honest, I was originally going to rate both books in this series slightly lower, but then, as some days went by after finishing, I was still kinda thinking about them. I wanted more. Not in the sense that they felt incomplete or lacking, just in the sense that I enjoyed them and therefore wanted more about these characters, or even just more books with this feel to them. I think it was the combo of both the stories and the audio narration that really did it for me. Listening to these was comforting. It was like someone was reading me a bedtime story.

Overall, this was a unique, light, fairytale-esque duology with a sweet, soft m/m romance that I enjoyed, especially with the wonderful audiobook narration.


Book Blurb

Drowned Country is 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.

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  1. Becky @ A Fool’s Ingenuity

    Glad I’m not the only one changing their rating after a few days of finishing. I always think a book which lingers with you for a few days isn’t to be overlooked. It must have made an impact if you’re still thinking about it. I’m interested in the writing style as you say it balances out the darker story elements. I’d love to see how it’s executed.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Sometimes I need time to let the book marinate lol. But yeah, surprisingly, it did make an impact. These turned out to be some of my most enjoyed books lately! I definitely recommend the audio though if you’re gonna try them and are able to get it!