I received this book through Goodreads in exchange for an honest review.
Like many other readers and reviewers, I did not know that this was a prequel to The Book of Speculation. This is completely understandable given that this book is in no way presented as if it were a prequel. It looks like its own story. And given that second half of this book is actually the first chapter of the novel, this whole thing felt like promotional material for The Book of Speculation. It was a bit disappointing.
I have not read The Book of Speculation, so I'll be honest, I had no idea what was going on. The language and writing was beautiful, but I really think you had to have read the novel first. Normally I'd say that's my own fault for not reading the novel, but I really don't think that's fair since this is marketed as "a story" rather than a prequel or part of the series.
Not a lot really happened in the story. It was pretty, but again it was more of an origins story for a character in the novel. Great imagery and descriptions, not a whole lot of plot or action.
I would highly recommend reading The Book of Speculations first if you are interested in this book.