Series: The Lotus War #1
Published by Tor UK on 1 September 2012
Genres: Fantasy, Steampunk, Young Adult
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The power-system in Stormdancer is very complex, and at the same time it rings very true. Sometimes, the people in power positively hate each other, but in order to stay in power, they still need to cooperate with people that are the opposite of themselves. That’s when personal power has become important than human lives, and it is easy to see that is the case in this story.
*I received a free ARC of Stormdancer from Tor UK via Netgalley in order to write an honest review of this book*
The glimpses into Yukiko’s past through the flashbacks are heartbreaking! It explains so much about her, and at the same time, it makes me want that she could still have the innocence, as well as the fellowship she had with her brother and Buruu. It also is an excellent way of providing the back-story, without resorting to info dumping. On that note, I also thought that the maps at the beginning of the book served this kind of purpose as well. Great way to let the readers know about the world, and how things work, with only two pages of maps showing the layout of the land and the power-structure at the same time.
Yukiko’s relationship with her father is so complicated; she loves him, and at the same time, she loathes him and everything he stands for. It is hard for her to have to take care of him, and I love that she realizes that he, as the adult, is supposed to be taking care of her! At the same time, there are many things she doesn’t know about him, and he is really not forthcoming with any answers she might need.
“A rainbow of profanity rolled between the trees, gutter-talk bouncing among walls of wood and fern, beneath a ceiling of shadowed green. Spirits slightly buoyed by her tiny rebellion, Yukiko tromped off into the gloom.”
The excitement building after this passage, first slowly, then so fast my heart was booming in time with the Tiger, made me so short of breath I almost couldn’t read – but I really couldn’t stop reading either!
It has been a very long time since I got goose-bumps from reading, but that is exactly what Stormdancer is doing to me! After the fight with the oni, and discovering the truth of her mother’s abandonment, Yukiko showed all of her strength, and she truly amazed me!
“She was pregnant, Buruu. I might have had a baby sister. Or another brother. She felt steel in him, folded and sharp, light rippling across the surface and glinting on his edge. He flooded her with it, tempered and hard, a resolve forged in lightning and thunder and cooled by the pounding rain. He was strong. So they were strong. “I AM YOUR BROTHER NOW.” The relationship between Yukuki and her storm tiger is absolutely perfect. It started out as contempt on one side, and adoration on the other, but it quickly grew to a mutual understanding, and I just love how they help each other out.
“He was sure that, if the planet were somehow rid of its bipedal infection, it would right itself eventually.” Yeah, Kin has it right, for sure. What the Guild and the Shogun are doing to the earth could probably be cleansed, and I am still hoping that Yukiko can help getting rid of both the Guild and the Shogun!
If you like a good fantasy novel with a world that is well built, and a mythology that is a little different, as well as a twist of steam-punk, this book is definitely for you!