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Beyond the Ruby Veil

(Beyond the Ruby Veil #1)

3.58  ·  Rating details ·  962 ratings  ·  327 reviews
A dark, queer YA fantasy that's perfect for fans of the Three Dark Crowns series. After Emanuela Ragno kills the one person in Occhia who can create water, she must find a way to save her city from dying of thirst.

Cunning and unapologetic, Emanuela Ragno is a socialite who plays by her own rules. In her most ambitious move yet, she’s about to marry Alessandro Morandi, her
Kindle Edition, 288 pages
Published October 13th 2020 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
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Average rating 3.58  · 
Rating details
 ·  962 ratings  ·  327 reviews

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Start your review of Beyond the Ruby Veil (Beyond the Ruby Veil, #1)
Ellie (faerieontheshelf)
Mara Fitzgerald
Jan 06, 2019 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
EDIT (10/03/20):

Quick update to let you all know that there is a PREORDER/LAUNCH SWAG CAMPAIGN! Runs from October 1st-October 31st. You can get a signed bookplate and art prints:

You can also get a signed AND personalized copy by ordering from my local indie, which is also available through the link!

EDIT (04/09/20):

Hey, everyone. This is a dark book. You can find content warnings on my website:

My publishing team and
Oct 16, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: audiobooks, lgbt
emanuela every five seconds: i think i will cause problems on purpose 😈

Oct 13, 2020 rated it it was ok
if the author hadn't been melting down on twitter dot com* for two weeks at least, i might have given this an extra star - it would be notionally harmless standing alone and i bolted it down in two very stupid hours. it moves like a fast brainless trout, like most editors these days want their young adult literature to do. its "cunning" "unapologetic" "chaotic" heroine creates plot for plot's sake and feels evermore like authorial overcompensation the more and more blood she spills - she swings ...more
Oct 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Beyond the Ruby Veil is one hell of a debut fantasy that is perfect for fans of Forest of a Thousand Lanterns by Julie C. Dao or Fairest by Marissa Meyer. It's dark and bloody page turner and I devoured it. Also, can I have book 2 yet???

This is one where you probably shouldn't know too much going in, but it is deliciously dark with a queer, ambitious, "unlikeable" female lead who really DGAF whether people think she's likable or not. It's bloody and twisty and includes the beginning of an f/f en
Nina Varela
May 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
My blurb:

Wicked-sharp and queer as hell, Mara Fitzgerald’s BEYOND THE RUBY VEIL takes you on a breathless ride through a world of blood magic and terrifying secrets, with writing as vicious, provocative, and darkly witty as anti-heroine Emanuela herself.

(it's so SO good, y'all. tiny chaos lesbian and her himbo bff, what more do you need?)
Toya (the reading chemist)
To be fair, the author did say that she enjoys writing unlikable female characters and did she ever deliver. I couldn’t stand Emanuela to the point that I never fully engaged with this story. Yes, the world building is great and the author doesn’t shy away from gore, but you can absolutely just throw Emanuela off a cliff and be down with her. I don’t appreciate one dimensional asshole characters.

More to come.
Star Rating: —> 3.5 to 4 Stars

I love me a good anti-heroine! I definitely enjoyed this!

Ambitious antiheroine mistress of destruction in the form of a chaos lesbian with a closeted gay BFF and lots of blood and Wicked Saints levels of eye gore? Sure did read this in one night and will take the sequel now, thanks.
Tucker  (TuckerTheReader)
May 13, 2019 marked it as not-released-tbr
Shelves: fantasy, young-adult
2019: godd*mn it. why does 2020 get all the good releases??!

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Beyond the Ruby Veil was one of those books that I instantly wanted to dive into based on seeing the cover. Then I read the synopsis and I just knew it had to be amazing. Yet, after diving into the actual book... it was just okay for me.

Now don't get your panties in a twist or mad at me because I didn't downright love the book. Trust me, I wanted to love it. I wont lie, the book even had something interesting parts to it.. I just couldn't really connect with anyone or anything that was happenin
anna (½ of readsrainbow)
rep: lesbian mc, gay side character, wlw side character
tw: gore, blood, torture, eye horror/body mutilation including eating of an eyeball (chapter 16 & 18), murder, body horror (especially chapter 19)

rtc. maybe?
Oct 29, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
0 stars if I could! This book compiles the worst possible features of any YA debut. This book only has its worldbuilding to recommend it, and even that aspect was flimsy.

I have never met a more unlikeable protagonist and narrator than Emanuela, and I live for unlikeable characters! I know that her selling point was that she was a "chaotic lesbian," but holy hell this girl needs a fucking leash.

And how the hell are we still supposed to be on her side when she regularly (verbally) abuses and takes
Eva B.
3.5 stars.
Beyond the Ruby Veil is a difficult book to rate. It has an incredibly unique world and a fascinating concept, but the execution is...slightly lackluster. This is a debut novel, and it shows in the writing, which I found to be incredibly bland and a bit juvenile, for lack of a better word. This is a story that would have benefited heavily from lush prose, and we get...not that. I really enjoyed Emanuela; although her self-righteousness got grating, it was something that others called o
The Nerd Daily
Oct 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Originally published on The Nerd Daily | Review by Kibby Robinson

Mara Fitzgerald’s debut novel Beyond the Ruby Veil tears down every tenent of YA fantasy and gives us a bold and bloody story of a viciously power-hungry girl who will leave her mark on you in more ways than one.

In the city of Occhia, water is created only through the blood magic of the mysterious watercrea, which becomes a real inconvenience when Emanuela Ragno pushes the watercrea out a window and to their death. But Emanuela doe
Victoria BookLover
Sep 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
Wow I’ve been in a HARSH slump since the beginning of this year, but some freaking how this book managed pluck me out of that abyss for at least the last couple of days. And let me tell you it was soooooo worth it!

Beyond the Ruby Veil possesses some innovative world-building and some sassy, scintillating characters that hooked me right from the beginning. Emanuela gave me some MASSIVE Alessandra (The Shadows between Us) vibes. Though instead of being a full on B-WORD, she was mostly just sarcas
Mar 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
My official review:

"BEYOND THE RUBY VEIL explores the themes of power, ambition, and the thin line between hero and villain in one of the most ingenious fantasy worlds I've seen in YA. Emanuela is both darkly funny and utterly terrifying, and I was compelled to follow her until the bitter, bloodthirsty end."
Madison Mary
Oct 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
"I believe in myself. I believe that I can change things no one else has ever been able to change, and do things no one else has ever been able to do. I don't care if people love me, or if what they think I do is good. But rest assured, they're going to know I was here."

A stunning debut about a heroine who isn't afraid to play dirty and be violent to get what she wants.

In the veiled city of Occhia, House Morandi rules. But it is the Watercrea who holds the most power, for she is the b
Caidyn (he/him/his)
I received an ARC through NOVL in exchange for an honest review!

CW: blood (for magic), death, and homophobia -

I read this book in two days, half each day. I could have read it (and wished I had been able to) in one sitting because it was just that good! I've been excited about this book for a while because I love dark, queer fantasies!

In this Emanuela's world, they have to ration water because there isn't enough to go around. Everyone gets the same amount
Sep 24, 2020 marked it as to-read
Shelves: 2020-releases
September 24, 2020: A dark and queer fantasy? enough said.
Julia Ember
Nov 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Utterly delightful and so fast paced! The protagonist is a terrible human and I loved her. Such a creative book surrounding the premise if water could only be made by magic.
Review: 5 Stars
You can also read my review here:

I have had this book on my radar for a long time now. When I first read the blurb I knew I wanted to read it, but I had no idea just how incredible this story would really be. Beyond the Ruby Veil is a very dark and fast paced read. I tore through this book in a day and was incredibly impressed with Mara Fitzgerald's debut. I loved every minute of this twisted book.

The writing captivated me right away, The story is told in first person from Emanue
Landice (Manic Femme)
I started this book and didn’t come up for air until I’d finished, three-ish hours later. I can’t remember the last book I read in literally one sitting, but that’s exactly what happened with Beyond the Ruby Veil.

I don’t even have words for what I just read, but I loved every minute of it. Please read this book and come yell about it with me, LOL.

Love sapphic books, too? Let's be friends! Bookstagram | Booktube | Book Blog | Twitter
Kristina (heartsfullofreads)
Actual rating: 3.5 stars

Well that was unexpected. This is one of the darkest YA fantasy books I've ever read and it is not for the faint of heart. Props to Mara Fitzgerald for not being afraid to push some boundaries. Not only was this dark, but also highly original. Our anti-heroine Emanuela is a pretty terrible person and probably a sociopath. I'm still not sure how I feel about her but she is definitely not a boring character.

It's safe to say that if unlikeable female characters are not y
Feb 22, 2021 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Buddyread with Melissa:)

Melissa's review here:

I liked the main character at first but after awhile she just got annoying.

The mythology/magic was interesting but the story itself was underwhelming overall. It felt kind of aimless at times.

Not a bad book, just an okay one.
Oh my goodness, this was amazing.

Now THIS. This, my friends, is an unlikeable, selfish, absolutely evil character I can fucking get behind. Trigger warnings for blood, gore, and body horror but if you're okay with reading those things, HOLY SHIT should you read this book!

I cannot wait for the sequel and I hope that in it. Emmanuela Ragno wipes the floor with the santimonious, self-righteous Verene.

Full review to follow! I'm so hyped right now!

Find more from me:
Blog || Instagram || Twitter || You
May 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
Okay...I had a think about this book and I'm back with a review.

This is definitely one of the stranger books I've read. I mean, the concept itself is kind of wild, right? It's such a strange little book and I adored reading it. It definitely hooked me from the beginning. The voice in this book is so easy to get drawn into it. It's sharp and funny, just like Emanuela herself.

The a wild ride from beginning to end. I read this in two sittings, and only put it down because it was like 6a
Oct 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Update: the new version has even more blood, and it's fantastic - clear your calendars in October!

I have had strong feelings about this story since I first read it last year! I've read another version since then (loved it even more) and I cannot wait to have the final, finished copy on my shelf!

It's dark, hilarious, and compelling, and any time it's mentioned I end up raving about how it's one of the most interesting and unique stories I've ever read. These characters and this world and the humo
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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Mara Fitzgerald writes YA fantasy about unlikable female characters who ruin everything. She is a biologist by day and spends entirely too much time looking at insects under a microscope. She was born near Disney World and now lives near Graceland, which is almost as good. Her debut YA fantasy, BEYOND THE RUBY VEIL, will release on October 13th, 2020.

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Beyond the Ruby Veil (2 books)
  • Into the Midnight Void (Beyond the Ruby Veil #2)

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