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“The pair collided, beast and demon, crashing earthward and tumbling about in a flurry of feathers, petals and screams”
Synopsis: 16 year old Yukiko and her father are sent to bring back an Arashitora, a Thunder Tigar thought to be extinct for the lord Yoritomato. Fearing that they would never find the beast they sail across theShima Isles but soon they discovered that it’s not finding the beast they should be scared of rather the implication of his existence. Soon they are all tested, lives will be lost wars started and sacrificed are demanded.
Review: Normally when a book is very good I have nothing to say about it other than it was good but holy cow do I have things to say about this book. Being rather opinionated I can find the negative in pretty much everything but I’ll be damned if I can find a single thing wrong with this book, it was simply breath taking.
Let’s start with the setting, it is set in feudal Japan except nor ordinary feudal japan but a dystopian steampunk styled world ruled by the overbearing and evil lord Yoritomato . The earth has become a somewhat desolate land after the over use of the lotus plant to power the sky ships and machines. The rich recline in their rice paper covered houses breathing clean air through their mechanized breathers while the poor inhale the toxic air produced by the lotus. I suppose in a lot of ways it is very much feudal japan, it reflected reality as it stood but with more technology. Simply put the setting was magnificent, described to perfection.
The protagonist Yukiko is how can I put it, OMFG. She is nothing like the whiny little girls lining every other YA books. She is strong, smart and can kick demon ass with the best of them. Not to mention the little quirk of being able to communicate with animals. I am in serious awe of this 16 year old not only because of her ability to manage her and her lotus addicted father’s lives but also because her adult like character and her teenage impulses was balanced to perfection. She took care of her father like an adult and still manage to say ‘I hate you’ and storm off like every other teenager.
I really tip my proverbial hat off to Kirstoff for creating a world that was for intent and purposes 4D. He described everything from the sights and sounds to the sent and even the emotions were described to absolute perfection. This book is a master class in world creation and I would love to see a movie made of this because this book is like a sensory delight and it the rest of the lotus war series is written to this standard I can guarantee that this books is going to have a success that rivals the Harry Potter series.
It is pretty obvious that I am a very big fan of this book, I simply could not put it down and several times I found myself getting too close to tears
I give this book my first and hopefully not my last 5 stars for creating a world that often lured you into safety only to have you back on the edge of your seat. This book sets the standard for other books to follow and I am even contemplating a ‘Stormdancer’ award for future books that somehow managed to reach this level of awesomeness.
Hardcover: 438 pages
Publisher: Tor (13 Sep 2012)
Author's Website: http://www.jaykristoff.com/
Purchase: Amazon US / Amazon UK