Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “In the Ravenous Dark” as Want to Read:
In the Ravenous Dark
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

In the Ravenous Dark

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  824 ratings  ·  342 reviews
A pansexual bloodmage reluctantly teams up with an undead spirit to start a rebellion among the living and the dead.

In Thanopolis, those gifted with magic are assigned undead spirits to guard them—and control them. Ever since Rovan’s father died trying to keep her from this fate, she’s hidden her magic. But when she accidentally reveals her powers, she’s bound to a spirit
Hardcover, Illumicrate Exclusive, 390 pages
Published May 10th 2021 by Hodder & Stoughton
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about In the Ravenous Dark, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about In the Ravenous Dark

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.02  · 
Rating details
 ·  824 ratings  ·  342 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of In the Ravenous Dark
Feb 21, 2020 added it  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
HI. Author, here! Now that the (AMAZINGLY GORGEOUS) cover has been revealed, let’s talk content + content warnings ...


This book involves blood magic, death magic, a spooky underworld, and ghostly guardians. It stars a young woman (19), Rovan, who falls for her hated guardian, gets entranced by a beguiling princess at the same time, and starts a revolution in both the living world and the underworld.

This book is queer. It has a pansexual main character (though that word isn’t used on pag
Nenia ✨ I yeet my books back and forth ✨ Campbell
A pansexual bloodmage reluctantly teams up with an undead spirit to start a rebellion among the living and the dead.

A.M. Strickland has taken the staples of the YA fantasy genre – a badass heroine, loveable characters and the overthrow of a corrupt institution – and combined them with a fascinating and distinct magic system, queer characters galore and sexy ghosts to create an utterly unique and gloriously queer story. In the Ravenous Dark was fun, angsty and kept me on my toes the whole way through; it’s a gripping and unapologetically chaotic rollercoaster of a book.

It is no secret that I’m a sucker for the
charlotte, (½ of readsrainbow)
On my blog.

Rep: pan mc, lesbian li, nonbinary side character, polyamory

CWs: blood, gore

Galley provided by publisher

This is yet another review that I have to open up with the disclaimer that this book suffered from my continuing (though more occasional now) …let’s say issues with YA fantasy, and if you are interested in it, don’t let this review stop you.

That being said, there were parts of it that I genuinely didn’t like and that’s not just me and YA fantasy.

Basically, this book follows the
Ellie (faerieontheshelf)

Generally very much enjoyed - had a lot of potential and could've been expanded into a duology so things felt more developed (like interpersonal character dynamics, mainly), but it also works well as a standalone. Also incredibly, casually queer.

rep: pansexual heroine, lesbian love interest, non-binary main character (who's also implied to be on the ace spectrum I think?), and many more LGBTQ+ folks across the whole cast.


"A pansexual bloodmage reluctantly teams up with an undead spirit t
Jun 08, 2020 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2021-releases
September 08, 2020: LOOK AT THE COVER! I can already see a book as outfit possibility,,,

June 8, 2020: I see a dark fantasy and I'm all set, but the author says it's going to have a pansexual MC, a lesbian love interest, a non-binary/asexual best friend, and a polygamous relationship...WHATTTT AHHH EXCITED!
Illumicrate April 2021 book of the month

ARC received in exchange for an honest review.

2.5 stars.

Rovan is the daughter of an unwarded bloodmage - a powerful wielder of blood magic who has spent his life hiding from those who would use his talents for their own gain. For in the city of Thanopolis, all bloodmages must have an undead guardian to control and protect them from themselves. Rovan has been taught to hide her own powerful gifts, but when circumstances force her to reveal her powers, she
Feb 26, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arcs, lgbtqiap
This arc was provided by Hodder & Stoughton, via Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.

TW: death, loss of a loved one (on-page and off), violence, blood, gore, body horror, fratricide,
mention of death by suicide, substance and alcohol addiction, enforced gender roles, forced marriage, and pregnancy (including rape, but the latter is off-page, in the past, and not involving main characters), and threats of rape and abuse.

I can confidently say that A.M. Strickland is a new auto-read and fav
4.5/5 Stars

I’ve had my eye on this book for a while – I love dark, bloodthirsty fantasy books and I love books with queer polyamory representation even more – and it definitely didn’t disappoint! In the Ravenous Dark follows Rovan who has hidden her blood magic for years, for fear that she will end up with a spirit assigned to her and forced to become part of the land’s army, after her father died so that she could keep herself secret. But, when she accidentally reveals her powers while saving s
May 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"A pan-sexual bloodmage reluctantly teams up with with an undead spirit to start a rebellion among the living and the dead."

Yep, that sums things up pretty well! In the Ravenous Dark is a decadent morsel of a book. Fast-paced, deliciously dark and bloody, filled with magic and death....highly recommend. Especially if you enjoy "unlikeable" heroines who refuse to fall in line, fight to their last breath, but are secretly soft with the people they truly care for. Rovan is exactly that and I love h
I absolutely loved Beyond the Black Door by A.M. Strickland, and after reading this one, I think it's safe to say I've found a new favourite author. This one was again so good, and so queer. I often have a hard time getting into fantasy, but this one was so accessible and had me crying in the prologue. I absolutely loved Rovan as a main character, and her dynamic with the other characters, which often made it a really funny read as well. ...more
Apr 08, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sapphic-reads
Firstly thank you to Hodder for sending me a copy of In The Ravenous Dark!
This book is a standalone YA/NA dark fantasy - I would say it is on the cusp of both genres. It is definitely not for younger readers simply due to the nature of the book and there are many many times characters swear.
I knew that when I saw the words 'pansexual polyamorous bloodmage' I needed to read this book.
And it did not disappoint. I love love love Rovan, she is an absolute whirlwind who does not tolerate anyone's
Steph ✨
May 10, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
We follow our main character Rovan who, as a young girl, watches her father die protecting her secret that she is a bloodmage. However, when several years have passed, Rovan accidentally reveals herself and is taken by the Palace to be warded by an undead spirit. As Rovan uncovers a secret that could destroy everyone and everything in Thanopolis, both living and undead, she must decide who she can trust to bring on a rebellion and fight for the City she's been desperate to leave.

This book was p
Alanna ❦

Lisa Maxwell
Jan 11, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2021
This book is every bit as lush and dark and magical as its gorgeous cover 😍😍 so glad I got a chance to read an ARC
Jesse Ruth (I need all the book boyfriends please)
Thank you Netgalley for this Arc! ❤

In the Ravenous Dark by A. M. Strickland is an intense and dark story full of dangerous magic and romance.
Rovan lives in Thanopolis with her mother and has been hiding that she is a blood mage her whole life. However, all of that changes one day at the market place when Rovan's current lover is in danger and she uses blood magic to save her. The story continues with Rovan becoming a member of the life at the palace and mixing with royals while learning more ab
May 21, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thank you so much to Imprint and Netgalley for providing an e-arc copy in exchange for an honest review

Wow. This was absolutely amazing!

I read very little of the synopsis (beyond the pitch) before going into this so a lot of this story took me by surprise. This book is hella queer, dark, gritty, and took me on a wild ride. I cannot wait to read more from A.M. in the future after devouring this fantastic fantasy!

This story follows a young woman who has hidden her abilities as a blood mage her
Jun 07, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2021-reads, favorites
★★★★★ 4.5 stars

This book is absolute madness and I loved every minute of it.

In The Ravenous Dark is the deliciously dark fantasy story I didn’t know I needed. Packed with rich characters, incredible world building, creepy vibes and cute AF leads, I absolutely adored everything about this book.

The book opens in the past, where seven year old Rovan witnesses her father die in an attempt to protect her secret; she is a powerful bloodmage. As the years progress, a now nineteen year old Rovan uses a
Bertie (LuminosityLibrary)
This book was wonderfully dark and had absolutely amazing representation. The plot was also really fun and I enjoyed reading through it. I especially loved how well the pansexual and polyamorous representation was handled, so I'd definitely recommend it to people interested in that. The main reason I'm not rating it higher is because of the characters. Although I loved the idea of them, their bonding seemed to happen off-page and due to that their relationships felt rushed and unrealistic. This ...more
Toya (the reading chemist)
After reading Beyond the Black Door and being a bit disappointed with the execution of the book, I still looked forward to the prospect of In the Ravenous Dark since I chalked up my grievances with the author’s previous book as a lack of experience since Beyond the Black Door was their debut. Well, it’s safe to say that I just am not a fan of the way that Strickland writes fantasy books.

So what is incredible about this story is the queer normative world. Everyone is open about both sexual and g
Aaliyah Reads
Jun 04, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
i’m not sure whether to rate this a 4.5/5 or a 5/5...

I really loved the story but near the end it seemed rushed. I was also confused about a few aspects of the ending.

I loved the 4 main characters sooo much, they were all so unique and beautiful!!

Rovan (the main main character) was such a badass and i really loved that she didn’t pretend to be someone she wasn’t and she was unapologetically herself.

Japah IS excellent! i loved them so much, I’ve never read about a character like them before. They
May 29, 2021 marked it as dnf  ·  review of another edition
DNF @60% and me trying to dnf books i’m not enjoying continues. i’m just not that into this, and while it certainly is bound to hit for other people it’s really not bringing me anything.
Brianna - Coffee Books and Bullet Journals
It’s not often that I can see myself in a fantasy book. But this was so beautiful and queer and empowering. If you like characters that want to overthrow a misogynistic way of life and do things because they want to do them, then you will love this book.
Tori Kiersten Frost
IN THE RAVENOUS DARK is a superb standalone fantasy brimming with wit, romance, and plenty of blood. If you made it through 2020 by playing HADES, this queer, polyamorous tale of a determined girl trying to escape a city ruled by death and dark magic needs to be the first thing on your 2021 wishlist.
♠ Tabi⁷ ♠
Nov 02, 2020 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: edelweiss
I so wanted to like this book. Being pansexual myself, I was eager to read a fantasy book about a main character who is also pan. Unfortunately, I could barely stand her most of the time and quite a few other things about the book just didn't work too well for me.

Some of the things I did like:

+ It had quite a bit of LGBTQIAP+ representation. We had the MC, Rovan, who is pan, one of her love interests who is a lesbian, and a side character who is non-binary, asexual and panromantic. The main rom
Jay G
Jun 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Want to see more bookish things from me? Check out my Youtube channel:

*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review*

Rovan is a pansexual blood-mage. Since the death of her father when she was 7 years old, she has been hiding her powers from the Crown. When her powers are accidently uncovered, she is captured and brought to the palace to be assigned an undead spirit to keep her powers in line. Wishing to escape her new
May 26, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

tw: death of a parent, suicide, mention of rape
Okay, this is probably weird to say but I liked In the Ravenous Dark.. but it had super weird and confusing moments to it. It also went down some deep dark paths that I wasn't fully aware of which made it even more interesting and confusing at the same time. Still liked and enjoyed it all though!

In this, you will meet Rovan. For almost all her life, she has been hiding the fact that she is a bloodmage. The reason why? Well, because she saw her dad dying in front of her eyes due to the fact that
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • For the Wolf (Wilderwood, #1)
  • The Ones We're Meant to Find
  • The Prison Healer (The Prison Healer, #1)
  • Threadneedle (The Language of Magic, #1)
  • Cheer Up: Love and Pompoms
  • The Beautiful Ones
  • A Dark and Hollow Star (A Dark and Hollow Star, #1)
  • The Unbroken (Magic of the Lost, #1)
  • Ariadne
  • Kate in Waiting
  • House of Hollow
  • Malice (Malice Duology #1)
  • A Dowry of Blood
  • Victories Greater Than Death (Unstoppable, #1)
  • Winter's Orbit
  • This Golden Flame
  • This Poison Heart (The Poison Heart, #1)
  • Red Tigress (Blood Heir Trilogy, #2)
See similar books…
See top shelves…
A.M. Strickland was a bibliophile who wanted to be an author before she knew what either of those words meant. She shares a home base in Alaska with her spouse, her pugs, and her piles and piles of books. She loves traveling, dancing, tattoos, and every shade of teal in existence, but especially the darker ones. She is the author of In the Ravenous Dark and Beyond the Black Door.

Articles featuring this book

Looking for some out-of-this-world reading this summer? Then we suggest taking a peek at these highly anticipated young adult books, all...
154 likes · 21 comments