Book Review

Book Review: The Woman Who Rides Like a Man (Song of the Lioness #3) by Tamora Pierce

Rating: ☆☆☆ 1/2  
Audience: Young adult fantasy
Length: 284 pages
Author: Tamora Pierce
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: 1986
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Newly knighted, Alanna of Trebond seeks adventure in the vast desert of Tortall. Captured by fierce desert dwellers, she is forced to prove herself in a duel to the death — either she will be killed or she will be inducted into the tribe. Although she triumphs, dire challenges lie ahead. As her mythic fate would have it, Alanna soon becomes the tribe’s first female shaman — despite the desert dwellers’ grave fear of the foreign woman warrior. Alanna must fight to change the ancient tribal customs of the desert tribes — for their sake and for the sake of all Tortall.

Alanna’s journey continues…

SOME GOOD. SOME BAD.

This book was so quick I’m having trouble formulating a review. I’ve sat on it for a few days and I’m going to try to put some thoughts to page, but we’ll see what happens. Maybe I’m using a list again:

Things I did like:

  • That Alanna did stand up for the type of relationship she wanted.
  • A bit more intrigue with her brother Thom and trying to decide his motives and who’s side he’s on. Adds some mystery to the plot.
  • George. I love the King of Thieves. He’s fun, sweet, gentle, and ruthless. I like watching his relations with Alanna develop.
  • I did like the characters from the Bazhir and enjoyed seeing Alanna form some tentative friendships with them.
  • It’s a super quick read.

Things I didn’t like:

  • I’m not sure about the story overall. I thought it was random she stayed with the Bazhir. It was like this book was added to give Alanna “an adventure.” Not much really happened in regards to the larger story (defeating the Duke).
  • Jonathan. Wow, and I was into him. He ruined any redemption chances. And I really hope there isn’t one. I’m over that ship.
  • Much slower pace than the previous two books and seemed oddly out of place.

Overall audience notes:

  • Young adult fantasy
  • Language: none
  • Romance: implied nights together, but no further details; some kisses
  • Violence: swords, magic, fire, poison, arrows

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Uncategorized

Book Review: In the Hand of the Goddess (Song of the Lioness #2) by Tamora Pierce

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: Young adult fantasy
Length: 264 pages
Author: Tamora Pierce
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: January 1st, 2005
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Disguised as a boy, Alanna of Trebond becomes a squire, to none other than the prince of the realm. But Prince Jonathan is much more to Alanna; he is her ally, her best friend, and one of the few who knows that she’s really a girl. Now it will take all of Alanna’s awesome skill, strength, and growing magical powers to protect him from the mysterious evil sorcerer who is bent on his destruction, and hers!

Here continues the story of Alanna, a young woman bound for glory who is willing to fight against enormous odds for what she believes in.

NOW I’M GETTING INVESTED.

I find it rare to come across a short fantasy book (less than 300 pages). I’m loving that this are this short because it’s a good break from big daunting fantasy books.

Alanna is someone I think we can all cheer for. I love continuing to watch her grow and become a powerful woman in her own right. She makes her own decisions and has her own convictions about how she wants her life to go and I applaud her for trying to attain those goals.

Yes, things could be overall fleshed out more. That’s the downfall to shorter reads. This has a lot of focus on just Alanna. A lot of information is thrown into casual conversation without any backstory. I occasionally was confused as to why things happened but, I like focusing on Alanna and what she’s going through rather than what everyone else is doing. This is a rare case of me being able to overlook these matters.

Her kinda sort-of-ish love connection is intriguing. I like that Alanna is choosing who she wants to be with on her own volition (but also you said you didn’t want to be with anyone…so….?). It’s good and fine and all, but I’m not sure they’re endgame. I think it would be interesting if she actually ended up with no one and she originally intended. WE’LL SEE.

The villain still makes me laugh. He’s not evil enough for me and since Alanna keeps besting him, there’s not a push and pull of issues between them.

Overall audience notes:

  • Young adult fantasy
  • Language: none
  • Romance: some kisses, mentions of spending the night with each other, but no actual depictions of those nights
  • Violence: swords, poison, magic, kidnapping, murder, battle skirmishes

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Book Review

Book Review: Alanna: The First Adventure (Song of the Lioness #1) by Tamora Pierce

Rating: ☆☆☆☆  
Audience: Young adult fantasy
Length: 274 pages
Author: Tamora Pierce
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: September 1st, 1983
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

From now on I’m Alan of Trebond, the younger twin. I’ll be a knight.

And so young Alanna of Trebond begins the journey to knighthood. Though a girl, Alanna has always craved the adventure and daring allowed only for boys; her twin brother, Thom, yearns to learn the art of magic. So one day they decide to switch places: Thom heads for the convent to learn magic; Alanna, pretending to be a boy, is on her way to the castle of King Roald to begin her training as a page.

But the road to knighthood is not an easy one. As Alanna masters the skills necessary for battle, she must also learn to control her heart and to discern her enemies from her allies.

Filled with swords and sorcery, adventure and intrigue, good and evil, Alanna’s first adventure begins – one that will lead to the fulfillment of her dreams and the magical destiny that will make her a legend in her land.

MY FIRST TAMORA PIERCE BOOK.

This book was less than 300 pages, so truly a quick read. I enjoyed it, but it also wasn’t world-shattering for me.

I really liked the coming of age story for Alanna. This book spans a few years of her life as she grows up pretending to be her brother so she can become a knight. She goes through a lot of growing pains that I could relate to and appreciated the addition of.

I had a hard time staying fully interested in the story. A lot was happening…and not happening all at once. The villains weren’t fully formed and weren’t in the book long enough for me to actually hate. They flitted through and I was like oh wait…what was that about?

What I am most excited about are the hints of the romance I must see in the future. It seems like it’s forming on solid ground, the guy is sweet and growing up in his own way. I think there’s a lot that could happen here and I am excited to know what happens between them.

There’s definitely inklings of what will happen in future installments and I am still interested in pursing them. It’s nice to have a break from big fantasies for something on a much smaller scale. I’m happy I finally picked this up!

Overall audience notes:

  • Young adult fantasy
  • Language: none
  • Romance: none
  • Violence: swords, poison, sickness

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