(reviewed by Aliette de Bodard)
I had this on my TBR pile for ages and didn’t get around to it–and I wish I had earlier, because it’s quite lovely. Saffron, a modern-day Australian girl, gets swept up in the world of Kena, and finds herself caught in the middle of a power struggle. The main strength of this is its cast, which walks off the page–there’s characters of all ages, all walks of life and all sexual orientations–and its gut punch ending. Kena and Veksh are both delightfully realised: I loved Veksh’s matriarchy of queens and the ordeal to become one. This is a book about world walking, but most of all about actions, mistakes, and what we bequeath the following generation–and, ultimately, how they have to make their own choices and own mistakes.
(and while it does come to an end, it’s definitely best read with its sequel, as the ending definitely leaves a lot of questions open).