Narrator: Marisa Calin
Published by MacMillan Audio
Published on 1 March 2019
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Source: my local library
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An eighteen-year-old chieftain's daughter must find a way to kill her villages oppressive deity if she ever wants to return home in this Viking-inspired YA standalone fantasy from Tricia Levenseller, author of Daughter of the Pirate King. How do you kill a god? As her father's chosen heir, eighteen-year-old Rasmira has trained her whole life to become a warrior and lead her village. But when her coming-of-age trial is sabotaged and she fails the test, her father banishes her to the monster-filled wilderness with an impossible quest: To win back her honor, she must kill the oppressive god who claims tribute from the villages each year or die trying.
This is my fourth Tricia Levenseller book, and I’m hooked.
I love that this author can put out books that are different enough to be different, but have enough similarities to be familiar. Like Maria V Snyder! It’s so comforting to be able to trust an author like this.
But the ultra-capable heroines are not insufferable. They’re not narcissistic. They’re easy to root for, because they’re easy to love. They’re genuine, and even though they all come from a certain level of privilege, they’re not entitled. It’s so nice to read about strong girls who don’t think the world, including kings, need to lick their feet without having earned anything! Or girls who think murderous thoughts but then faint so a BoY can rescue them, oops, better not be too powerful, I am a helpless girl after all!
In this novel, Rasmira is the daughter of the village chief in a Viking-esque fantasy world. She’s expected to inherit the leadership, but when he trial goes wrong, she’s banished from her village and forced into exile in the very wilds that keep her village trapped and terrorised by a god called Peruxolo. The only way to earn her way home is to kill the god. Easy, right? Except these quests are supposed to be impossible.
What I liked most about Rasmira is that she wasn’t just a tough warrior. She was intelligent as well! She literally thought her way to overcoming her obstacles, which I loved. It wasn’t the author handing her something because she needed it, it wasn’t convenience, and it wasn’t an unexpected boon or a deux ex. The whole thing made perfect sense because of the way Levenseller wove the aspects she’d need later on throughout the narrative. I loved how the plot was beautifully linear and the obstacles clear – but it was Rasmira’s insertion into the narrative that moved the plot forward. If she didn’t exist, so many obstacles would still be there, and that’s why I love her.
Rasmira was very leery of bOyS so when she ran across TWO of them in the wild, I was really interested to see if Levenseller would even develop a romance. To be honest, I thought it might be refreshing if a romance never developed! I also loved watching Rasmira’s character development: figuring out that she was also partly responsible for her banishment and not just moping around as a victim, then learning to lead, and finally grasping at her destiny with both hands.
While the novel took a little bit for me to get in to, as there is a certain amount of worldbuilding that has to be done to really understand Rasmira’s society, I was invested by the time she was banished, and I kept getting more invested as I read. The climax itself was PARTICULARLY SATISFYING.
I listened to this book on audio. The narrator, Marisa Calin, did a pretty decent job and was able to indicate different voices for different characters, which I find really important.
I really enjoyed this novel and I hope you will, too!