Author: David Kudler
Release Date: June 15th 2016
Series: Seasons of the Sword
Genre: YA/Fantasy/Historical Fiction
Publisher: Stillpoint Digital Press
Buy it : Amazon (As of posting this review, it is only available for pre-order)
First Line: Spying on the lord of the province from the top of the old pine was a bad idea.
Blurb from Goodreads: My name is Kano Murasaki, but most people call me Risuko. Squirrel.
I am from Serenity Province, though I was not born there.
My nation has been at war for a hundred years, Serenity is under attack, my family is in disgrace, but some people think that I can bring victory. That I can be a very special kind of woman.
All I want to do is climb.
My name is Kano Murasaki, but everyone calls me Squirrel.
Though Japan has been devastated by a century of civil war, Risuko just wants to climb trees. Growing up far from the battlefields and court intrigues, the fatherless girl finds herself pulled into a plot that may reunite Japan — or may destroy it. She is torn from her home and what is left of her family, but finds new friends at a school that may not be what it seems.
Magical but historical, Risuko follows her along the first dangerous steps to discovering who she truly is.
Kano Murasaki, called Risuko (Squirrel) is a young, fatherless girl, more comfortable climbing trees than down on the ground. Yet she finds herself enmeshed in a game where the board is the whole nation of Japan, where the pieces are armies, moved by scheming lords, and a single girl couldn’t possibly have the power to change the outcome. Or could she?
**I received a free copy of this novel from Netgalley.**
First, let me just say, the cover of this book is so beautiful. It’s simple and almost tells the story all on it’s own. It is what drew me to even look at this book to begin with.
I love Japan and will read just about anything about it. I don’t know what the draw is, but this book did not disappoint. I am unsure how old Risuko is supposed to be, but I do know that she is young enough to not have gone fully through puberty yet. Which means she should be awkward and unsure about…everything. And she is exactly that. She is confused about how she found herself taken from her home and in this school that she has no clue about. There is a lot of wondering thoughts as she tries to make sense of her new situation, her new life.
This was such a fun ride reading. We find ourselves in the mind of a young girl who just wants to climb and see the world from atop the trees. A girl that has a strength she never knew.
With that said, the story was a little slow paced, but it didn’t make it boring. It felt necessary for the story to progress. I found myself enjoying the boring every day things that Risuko had to go through.
While this is the first book in a series, I feel that it could easily be a stand alone novel, meaning I am looking forward to the next book, but I am not ready to stalk the author to read the next book. It didn’t leave you on a complete cliff hanger that it makes you sick to your stomach.
The cover is gorgeous. It was the first thing about the book that made me want to read it.