Posted 20 hours ago

A Song of Wraiths and Ruin

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This is the second fantasy book that I’ve read in the past few years that is based in African cultures, and world-building is stunning.

At times she was such a badass like when she beat the champion but then SHE THREW THE GODDAMN BOOK INTO A CANON. But when her mother, the respected sultana of Ziran, is assassinated the night Solstasia begins, Karina finds herself in the position of having to run the festival herself.There is a sequel planned, as the story is being marketed as the first of a duology, and I cannot wait for the next book (although I’ll obviously have to). Or at least I wished there was initially, as this book does not ease you gently into the beautiful but intense language of the story.

Ebooks fulfilled through Glose cannot be printed, downloaded as PDF, or read in other digital readers (like Kindle or Nook). As for their "chemistry", well I am still looking for it because I sure did not feel any chemistry between Karina and Malik in this book. duh) I did find the fact that both Karina and Malik were planning on killing the other each for their own reasons to be a very nice touch. I really appreciate Brown's thought and care into the worldbuilding and the way she infuses West African mythology and culture into the story. Since no one believes magic really exists, Malik performs a story about Hyena, the popular mythical trickster, using his illusions as accents to his story.Although her character feels more generic compared to Malik's, the author breathes fresh life into Karina by making her complex; she deals with a lot of personal insecurity, fear, loss and loneliness but when the time comes for her to step up, she's able to bury it all under a veneer of unwavering confidence and authority. Aminata revels that she has been spying on Farid and wants to maintain her position, so she hustles back to the palace while Afua and Hamidou hustle Karina out of Ziran.

The pacing structure is incredibly strange- sometimes picking up and moving with grace and speed- and other times, dragging and focusing on details that didn't feel like they were contributing a lot to the story and atmosphere as a whole. It's the first YA fantasy I've read in a loonng while that didn't have a romance that took over the entire plot. I’m out here trying to diversify my bookshelf, and I realized really the only other fantasy series I had on my shelves that was written by a black author is Children of Blood and Bone.Malik, thinking this may be his opportunity and realizing he can use his illusion powers to essentially make himself invisible, follows shortly after back to the palace. in case you need some good news right now, the author describes this book as: black princess who doesn't give a fuck, black boy who gives so many fucks, slow burn enemies to lovers romance with PINING, so much backstabbing.

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