My Rating ~ Five stars
RELEASED: 6 March 2018
Publisher: Henry Holt
Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zelie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.
But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were targeted and killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.
Now, Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.
Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers—and her growing feelings for the enemy.
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Once upon a time Orïsha was full of magic. Those born as ‘Divîners’, becoming Magi on their thirteenth birthday, we’re said to be gifted magic from the gods. Tiders, Burners, Connectors, Winders, Welders, Healers, Cancers, Seers, Tamers and, like Zélie’s Mother, Reapers. They all harnessed different forms of magic. Zélie would have been a Reaper like her mother, but before she came of age, the King decided magic was too dangerous to be a part of Orisha and set out to destroy all of the Magi. Zélie’s Mother was killed and her father left as a shell of his former self.
Princess Amari witnesses the brutality of her father within the castle walls, and discovers he possesses an artifact that could revive magic in some of the Divîners She flees the castle and, by chance, is thrown into the path of Zélie.
Together with Zélie’s brother, they set out on a mission to end the tyrannical rule of Amara’s father and bring magic back to Orïsha Tracked by Amari’s brother, Inan, the story weaves together bloodlust, betrayal and friendship.
I honestly could hardly breathe the entire time I was reading this book, right from the very first page. My heart ached for the cruelty Zélie’s family endured and the desperate lives they lead. Zélie is a fierce warrior, but the author somehow manages to preserve some of her innocence, reminding us of the horribly heavy burdens she carries for her age. Told from three different points of view, Zélie, Amari and Inan’s, I loved the slow developing of the friendships in this book. So often we see books where two lifelong enemies are thrown together and almost immediately seem to trust each other. That wasn’t the case here and the difficulty in overcoming feelings you’ve had towards a group of people for your whole life was well explored – on both sides.
The battle scenes were heart stopping, the landscapes and giant creatures described in the book (known as different types of Ryders) were vivid and the anguish of the characters was real. I loved this book from beginning to end, and the last line of the book left me checking the calendar for how far away next March really is, because HOW can I wait another 10 months for the next book?!
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