Sasha is a fighter, the likes of which the highland country of Lenayin has never seen.
Spurning her royal heritage to be raised by the great warrior Kessligh, Sasha's exquisite swordplay astonishes all who see it. But she is young, untested in battle, and often led by her rash temper. In the complex world of Lenayin loyalties, her willfulness is attracting the wrong kind of attention.
Lenin is a land divided by its beliefs: the Verenthane of the ruling class, and the pagan Goeren-yai, amongst whom Sasha now lives. The Goeren-yai value swordplay and honor, and have come to see Sasha as the great spirit who will unite them. But Sasha is still searching for what she believes and must choose her side carefully.
Soon she will face her moment of testing. Is she ready to lead? Can she be the savior the Goeren-yai want her to be?
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Engaging, well written, and wonderfully performed.
It is enjoyable to see Sasha's makeup and growing personality unfold as she takes on her leadership role.
The descriptions of scenes and action are colorful and detailed enough to make the events exciting and vivid.
High marks for actual swordplay moves and technique. Believable explanation of how skill and speed are able to defeat brute force in combat.
Kate Reading nailed too many characters to pick a favorite. How anyone could read the part of everything from outraged, blustering warrior king, to fearful children so convincingly is truly amazing.
I wanted this story to last longer than one sitting.
As an equestrian I appreciated the detail, attention, and credit given to the horses of the story. Their character, handling, care and limitations were realistic, which added a lot when so much of the story involved riding.
- Jean Alexander
Decent dialog, good fight scenes
The story is mostly told through dialog and it drags. There are some good action scenes and the dialog is actually pretty good, but the normal doing of things that makes up a story is kinda missing.
The end. The book could have been shortened by an appreciable amount.
- Michael McKee