Review: The Sevenfold Hunters by Rose Egal

The Sevenfold Hunters

The Sevenfold Hunters
Rose Egal
Page Street Press
Published October 25, 2022

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About The Sevenfold Hunters

Sci-fi fans will love this genre-bending debut full of cutthroat school politics and the speculative intrigue of alien contact.

There’s nothing hijabi alien hunter Abyan wants more than to graduate from Carlisle Academy and finally rid the Earth of the Nosaru, a species hidden in plain sight.

Everything is going to plan until the Nosaru kill one of Abyan’s squad mates, leaving the team devastated. To make matters worse, the school admins replace her elite squad member with a sub-par new recruit, Artemis. Despite Artemis failing every test—and bringing the team down with her—their cutthroat instructors refuse to kick her out.

Together Abyan, Artemis and the rest of the team unravel the mystery of why Artemis is actually there, what the Nosaru really want, and what Carlisle Academy has been hiding from them all.

The Sevenfold Hunters on Goodreads

My Review

An elite team of teens fighting vampire space aliens called Nosaru. A girl wrestling with the her boyfriend’s sudden death. A girl on the hunt for revenge for her family’s deaths. All that seemed like it would add up to a pretty compelling read.

For me, those elements just didn’t come together in THE SEVENFOLD HUNTERS. Artemis felt kind of flat. In a couple scenes she seemed motivated to learn more about her boyfriend’s death, but mostly she was so distracted about her own survival that her grief got really pushed to the side. Concern for her survival makes total sense, but it was weird that the story framed her as this grieving girl, and I didn’t feel like it delivered that.

Abyan, however. She’s complex. A girl from a poor family in a school of wealthy elites. A practicing Muslim. The top team’s driven leader, with a tragic, secret past and a desperate hope for revenge. I was all in on her.

At times, I felt pulled forward through the intense, action-packed scenes. They fight space vampires who’ve invaded earth. It’s super cool. But.

I didn’t understand some of the dynamics of the overall battle between the humans and aliens. Like, the operatives know there are a number of hives of Nosaru near the school, but they just sort of… let them be? I thought this was a kill or be killed kind of enemy?

After a Sevenfold mission goes badly because one team member turns on the others, everyone goes back to base for a debrief where they… worry about this team member’s feelings? They’re like, we can’t press this person to tell us why they did what they did because it involves secrets from their past. We need to wait for them to feel comfortable to tell us.

That didn’t add up for me. Most of the members of the team were (I think) in their last year at the school, very near to being able to graduate and work as paid operatives in the fight against the Nosaru. It seemed like the first concern should have been, is this team member going to get me killed? Is this team member capable of serving the needs of the team, or do they need to step back and deal with whatever past issues are interfering with them and risking everyone’s safety?

I don’t know, but that whole part read very strangely to me.

There were also a couple of reveals that came late in the story that I felt like didn’t really get explored. It’s possible that those were primarily supposed to be a setup for a sequel. I just didn’t see how they fit into this story and they were big things, so it was weird that they didn’t have more focus or weren’t revealed earlier.

On the whole… I struggled with this book. There were things I liked. Abyan’s character is at the top of that list. I loved her. I liked some of the other team members, too, especially Kade and Hank. The plot felt a bit unfocused and some parts didn’t make a lot of sense to me. So that made the book harder for me to read. I thought the story world was interesting and there are a lot of cool elements to explore if there are further books to come in the series.

The Sevenfold Hunters on Bookshop

Content Notes for The Sevenfold Hunters

Content warning for torture and violence.

Recommended for Ages 14 up.

Abyan is Somali and Muslim. Artemis is biracial and bisexual. Other characters identify as LGBTQIA+.

Profanity/Crude Language Content
Extreme profanity used infrequently.

Romance/Sexual Content
Kissing between two girls.

Spiritual Content
References to Abyan practicing daily prayer and keeping to halal foods.

Violent Content
References to a brutal attack on a group of teenagers. Situations of peril and battle scenes. One scene shows a man torturing a captive.

Drug Content
One scene shows several teens drinking alcohol at a party. Another scene shows a teen vaping.

Note: This post contains affiliate links, which do not cost you anything to use, but which help support this blog. I received a free copy of THE SEVENFOLD HUNTERS in exchange for my honest review.

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About Kasey

Reads things. Writes things. Fluent in sarcasm. Willful optimist. Cat companion, chocolate connoisseur, coffee drinker. There are some who call me Mom.

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