The Lost City (The Omte Origins #1)
Published July 7, 2020
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About The Lost City
Nestled along the bluffs of the forested coast lays the secret kingdom of the Omte—a realm filled with wonder…and as many secrets.
Ulla Tulin was left abandoned in an isolated Kanin city as a baby, taken in by strangers and raised hidden away like many of the trolls of mixed blood. Even knowing this truth, she’s never stopped wondering about her family.
When Ulla is offered an internship working alongside the handsome Pan Soriano at the Mimirin, a prestigious institution, she jumps at the chance to use this opportunity to hopefully find her parents. All she wants is to focus on her job and the search for her parents, but all of her attempts to find them are blocked when she learns her mother may be connected to the Omte royal family.
With little progress made, Ulla and Pan soon find themselves wrapped up in helping Eliana, an amnestic girl with abilities unlike any they have ever seen before—a girl who seems to be running from something. To figure out who she is they must leave the city, and possibly, along the way, they may learn more about Ulla’s parents.
The last books I read by Amanda Hocking were in her Watersong series, about a cursed group of Sirens, so this book is a lot different!
Ulla and her friends are trolls– which seem to be very much like humans except in skin color and some features. Some tribes also have magic. One tribe is characterized by asymmetrical facial features.
On her internship, Ulla learns lots about the history and lore of various troll tribes and some of the politics between them. She’s curious about her mother, and hopes the resources available during her internship will help Ulla find her.
Though it’s populated with mythical creatures, THE LOST CITY is set squarely in our world with mentions of cell phones, fashion, familiar food, etc. I think this is something this author does well. She creates a familiar landscape and then tells an otherworldly story in it. I find that I really like those two things juxtaposed together.
This is a bit of a slower story, though. There are lots of tribes, lots of history. Many descriptions of food and furniture. Lots of conversations about those things. And lots of troll politics.
I felt like Ulla’s goal (finding her mom) kind of gets diluted with helping Eliana and her feelings toward Pan. That kind of made the level of action in the story feel flat at times rather than rising.
Despite that, I really liked the cast of characters. Ulla is great, of course. Her roommate, Dagny, an aloof, highly intelligent warrior-type, might be my favorite. Pan is sweet and funny.
Ulla’s search for her mom in a fragmented, politically volatile landscape makes for an interesting story, peppered with a variety of great characters. I think readers who enjoyed THE GOBLIN EMPEROR by Katherine Addison or HAVENFALL by Sara Holland will want to check out this book.
Recommended for Ages 12 up.
Ulla’s roommate is asexual. Most characters are trolls.
Profanity/Crude Language Content
Strong profanity used very infrequently.
Some feelings of attraction between Pan and Ulla.
Some reference to troll and Norse folklore.
Assailants knock a girl unconscious.
Ulla drinks too much peach wine at a festival.
Note: I received a free copy of THE LOST CITY in exchange for my honest review. This post contains affiliate links, which do not cost you anything to use, but which help support the costs of running this blog.