Chosen to embrace her true identity. Chosen to follow her destiny. Chosen to change her world.
Mari is an Earth Walker, heir to the unique healing powers of her Clan, but she has been forced to turn from her duties, until she is chosen by a special animal ally, altering her destiny forever. When a deadly attack tears her world apart, Mari reveals the strength of her powers and the forbidden secret of her dual nature as she embarks on a mission to save herself and her people. It is not until Nik, the son of the leader from a rival, dominating Tribe, strays across her path that Mari experiences something she has never felt before…
Now evil is coming, and with it, a force more terrible and destructive than the world has ever seen, leaving Mari to cast the shadows from the earth. By breaking Clan Law and forming an alliance with Nik, she must make herself ready. Ready to save her people. Ready to save herself and Nik. Ready to embrace her true destiny…and battle the forces that threaten to destroy them all.
5 moonlit stars!
An ARC has been kindly provided by St Martin’s Press, via NetGalley.com, in exchange for an honest review.
I’ve read many books written by this author being her House of Night series or her Goddess Summoning series. When I realized she was writing a new series, I had to read it and I feel so privileged to have been chosen by the publisher as it’s been a truly magical read.
I loved so many things in this book, beginning with the whole new world PC Cast has created depicted with many details, from the plants to the beasts and of course the clans and tribes. As she took the time to set the scene and the tone, the beginning was a little slow and I was lost between who was who but once I got my bearing, I was sucked in this post-apocalyptic world all ready to follow the main characters many adventures.
I walked right alongside Mari and Leda crossing heavily thorned brambles to get to their hidden burrow. I prepared healing potions with crushed leaves and flowers. I hunted with Nik in the dangerous forest to find the lost puppy, trying to avoid Wolf Spiders. I bathed in the moonlight or in the sunlight, depending on the tribe to gather strength and sanity. I could see the colors, hear the screams of animals or men turned feral as they were plagued by the Night Fever, I could smell either the healing sage or the putrid odor of bodies affected by the blight.
It was vivid, it was real…
This particular world is our earth, many years after the sun destroyed all technology. Men tried to survive through clans and tribes. Each tribe had its own distinctive features. Some tribes you’ll love, others you’ll despise and be disgusted by their way to survive but you’ll always be able to see their intricacies and what made them special.
Honestly I was impressed by the author’s writing as with just a few sentences, she made me envision each new main or side character in all their uniqueness. PC Cast is an experienced and gifted writer and it shines through this book. Many side characters fill the book, each very well portrayed, each serving their purpose to sustain the story and make it a magical experience.
Mari, the female main character is girl you will love very relatable with her doubts and dreams. She’s been born from the love of a Companion, from the Tribe of the Trees and a Moon Woman from the Earth Walker clan. Companions and Earth Walker cannot join, cannot love. She is a taboo and as such had to hide her true nature to the Clan’s men and women for fear of exile. She was also an incredibly talented artist and her true gift was more promising than anyone could have hoped. Caught between two worlds, she did not fit in and longed for being accepted for who she truly was. My heart hurt many times for Mari as I could feel her longing, her hope but also her deep despair when a dramatic event hit her full force.
Nik is her counterpart in his own tribe, the Tribe of the Trees a tribe known for enslaving Earth Walker’s women. For different reasons, he did not meet his people high expectations and was also always on the outskirts. He needed to belong, to be seen as worthy. He also had his lot of drama. The most talented archer of his tribe, he could never be a leading archer and it was slowly eating him. He was also a very likeable character courageous, loyal to a fault and ready to change his mind and stray from his people way if it meant creating a better, fairer world.
To my delight the villains were true “black no gray” villains: Dead Eyes with his barbaric and disgusting ways; Thaddeus with his arrogance and permanent anger, worsening by the end of the book as it turned to full hatred.
Each character had his/her own quest: Mari had to discover who she was meant to be, Dead Eye wanted to save his people and Nik had to find the lost puppy, prove his worth. Their paths cross, clash sometimes for better or other times for worse changing the future of their respective tribes.
It’s quite a big book but not once did I feel boredom or thought some parts should have been cut. I was carried away far from my day to day life living in this magical land and experiencing every joy, hope, pain or fear Mari and Nick felt.
If you loved the House of Night series I just know you’ll love this one too. My only complaint? I have to wait months to know what will happen next!
Convinced? Grab your copy HERE