Thanks to St.Martins for letting me be a part of this awesome tour =) Make sure you check out the rest of the tour stops! The schedule can be found here.
Stormdancer (The Lotus War #1) by Jay Kristoff.
Audience/Genre : Young Adult/Steampunk, Fantasy.
Publication : September 18th 2012 by Thomas Dunne Books.
A DYING LAND
The Shima Imperium verges on the brink of environmental collapse; an island nation once rich in tradition and myth, now decimated by clockwork industrialization and the machine-worshipers of the Lotus Guild. The skies are red as blood, the land is choked with toxic pollution, and the great spirit animals that once roamed its wilds have departed forever.
AN IMPOSSIBLE QUEST
The hunters of Shima's imperial court are charged by their Shōgun to capture a thunder tiger – a legendary creature, half-eagle, half-tiger. But any fool knows the beasts have been extinct for more than a century, and the price of failing the Shōgun is death.
A HIDDEN GIFT
Yukiko is a child of the Fox clan, possessed of a talent that if discovered, would see her executed by the Lotus Guild. Accompanying her father on the Shōgun’s hunt, she finds herself stranded: a young woman alone in Shima’s last wilderness, with only a furious, crippled thunder tiger for company. Even though she can hear his thoughts, even though she saved his life, all she knows for certain is he’d rather see her dead than help her.
But together, the pair will form an indomitable friendship, and rise to challenge the might of an empire.
Okay, this is my reaction to Stormdancer -
Yeah, I'm about to start raving about the awesomeness of Jay Kristoff and Stormdancer so be prepared.
I know the year's not even close to ending but OH. MY. GOD. This is hands-down the best steampunk(ish) novel I've ever read and of 2012 ! I don't even know where to begin, this book completely blew me away! Heroes/Villans, Legends, Samurais, War, Kingdoms, Demons, Magic and even a little bit of Romance - Stormdancer has everything. This book is pure epicness.
Set in a world that's a mixture of steampunk and fantasy, the story begins with Yukiko, a 16-year-old girl belonging to the kitsune (fox) clan in the dying land of Shima, leaving with a group of hunters to fulfill a quest set by their Shogun. The quest is pretty much the impossible - to find and capture a Thunder Tiger/Arashitora.
The world building in this book is absolutely fantastic! Thanks to their Shogan, a selfish and cruel man, Shima is a land that's headed towards destruction. The land has been poisoned by the blood lotus, a type of flower that're used in the making of luxury items for the wealthy. The descriptions were so detailed that I could pretty much see the entire story play out in my head like a film.
Yukiko is everything a heroine/protagonist should be; she's strong, honorable and a fighter. There's so much history, mythology and culture involved that I fell in love with this book just 30% in! It just got better from there. The relationship between Yukiko and Buruu is amazing. You have to admit, you don't picture a giant, mighty animal to have a sense of humor but Buruu had me melting. He seemed even more human than Yukiko at times, with his mood-swings, thoughts and basically just the things he said. Hard to believe I fell in love with something that's part animal, even if it is fictional. Frankly, Saphira and Eragon have nothing over these two and I've been loyal to that series from the very beginning.
Kristoff even threw in humor and despite the seriousness of the plot, it worked. Oh hell, it better than worked. I was laughing so much sometimes, especially when I got to the part about 'couple'.
Stormdancer is a stunning, epic story with admirable characters. I'm pre-ordering my hardcover right now. You don't really need me to sell you on this, it's is an absolute must-read, especially for fans of Eon and Inheritance series because trust me, The Lotus War is so much better than them!
Lastly, someone seriously needs to make a movie of this. Like, right now.
Favorite Quotes from Stormdancer.
1."WHEN IT IS DONE, WE WILL FLY FAR FROM HERE. FAR FROM THIS SCAB AND ITS POISONED SKY. WE WILL DANCE IN THE STORMS, YOU AND I."
- Quoted from the Advanced Reader's Copy.
2.“It's easy to lose yourself in the idea of a person and be blinded to their reality.”
3.“Dying is easy. Anyone can throw themselves onto the pyre and rest a happy martyr. Enduring the suffering that comes with sacrifice is the real test.”
4.“DO NOT UNDERSTAND YOU MONKEYS.”
5.“He's probably out there in the hallway right now, composing bad poetry in his head." Michi cleared her throat, her voice taking on a breathless lilt:
"Pale Fox's Daughter,
Her cherry lips haunt my dreams.
Something, something, breasts...”
Giveaway Terms and Conditions :
- Giveaway is US Only.
- The Publisher is responsible to ensure the winner gets the prize.
- Winner has 36 hours to respond or a new one will be picked.
- Giveaway ends on September 10th, 2012.