Sisters of Sword and Song
From the author of The Queen’s Rising comes a thrilling YA stand-alone fantasy about the unbreakable bond between sisters. Perfect for fans of Ember in the Ashes, Sky in the Deep, and Court of Fives.After eight long years, Evadne will finally be reunited with her older sister, Halcyon, who has been proudly serving in the queen’s army. But when Halcyon appears earlier than expected, Eva knows something has gone terribly wrong. Halcyon is on the run, hunted by her commander and charged with murder.Though Halcyon’s life is spared during her trial, the punishment is heavy. And when Eva volunteers to serve part of Halcyon’s sentence, she’s determined to find out exactly what happened. But as Eva begins her sentence, she quickly learns that there are fates much worse than death.

Sisters of Sword and Song Details

TitleSisters of Sword and Song
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJun 23rd, 2020
PublisherHarperTeen
ISBN-139780062471413
Rating
GenreFantasy, Young Adult, Young Adult Fantasy, Mythology, Fiction, High Fantasy, Historical, Historical Fiction, Magic, Adventure, Romance

Sisters of Sword and Song Review

  • Helena of Eretz ✰
    January 1, 1970
    I received this complimentary ARC from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.AND THE WINNER OF THE PRETTIEST COVER GOES TO...😍I loved this so, so, so much!!! This is a miracle!!! After months of flipping from one book to another…I finally finished one! Bless this book! Is my dreaded book slump over? I certainly hope so!This beautifully-written standalone takes place in an alternate Ancient Greek world with its own unique mythology. Each of the nine “divines” (gods) left behind an earth I received this complimentary ARC from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.AND THE WINNER OF THE PRETTIEST COVER GOES TO...😍I loved this so, so, so much!!! This is a miracle!!! After months of flipping from one book to another…I finally finished one! Bless this book! Is my dreaded book slump over? I certainly hope so!This beautifully-written standalone takes place in an alternate Ancient Greek world with its own unique mythology. Each of the nine “divines” (gods) left behind an earthly relic for humankind, some of which were never recovered, and each relic has its own magical properties: 1. Magda (mother goddess of the sun) – the Sunstone Ring (grants enchanted healing to its bearer)2. Irix (father god of the sky) – the Sky Cloak (grants power over weather and elements)3. Ari (goddess of the night) – the Shawl of Stars (grants protection to its bearer; is impenetrable and rebounds weapons)4. Nikomides (god of war) – the Devouring Sword (grants dominion over enemy weapons, turning them into dust; also cuts down enchantments)5. Acantha (goddess of fate and knowledge) – the All-Seeing Crown (grants its bearer protection from enchantments and enables them to see the past, present, or future of the one they look upon)6. Euthymius (god of earth and beasts) – the Golden Belt (grants animal allegiance to its bearer)7. Loris (goddess of water and sea) – the Pearl Earrings (grants the power to breathe underwater)8. Pyrrhus (god of fire; trapped beneath the earth) – the Ember Stone (grants fire effortlessly when the stone is breathed upon)9. Kirkos (god of the wind; fallen god) –the Winged Necklace (grants flight to its bearer)The story revolves around two sisters from Isaura:the hoplite, Halcyon and the scribe, Evadne Halcyon is a fierce warrior, who serves under the command of Lord Straton in his legion…until she is accused of murdering his son and her fellow hoplite, Xander. Straton demands punishment for her crimes, and Halcyon is sentenced to five years working in a quarry, five years in prison, and five more years in service to Straton’s household. Not wanting to lose her sister for 15 years, Evadne agrees to serve the five years in Straton’s household on her sister’s behalf. It turns out that Halcyon’s crimes are not a simple as they seem and she and Xander had undertaken a secret mission to uncover one of the more powerful relics. As Halcyon tries to survive the quarry, where she’s surrounded by enemies and those who desire information from her – by any means possible – Evadne and Xander’s younger brother, Damon, who is a mage, have decided to see the mission through. And they face much more powerful mages than themselves, mages who want to possess the relic for the powers that it grants the user. Both sisters find themselves in very dangerous situations and find strength in the love they have for each other. It’s been a while since I’ve come across such a wholesome sibling-relationship in a book. Halcyon and Evadne’s love and devotion to each other was so strong and they were willing to do whatever it took to protect each other. It was so lovely to see, and I’d love to see more books in this wonderfully-constructed world. (view spoiler)[ I also loved Evadne’s slow-burn romance with Damon. It was so cute and they were so gentle with one another. I don’t know why, but I love the anticipation leading up to slow burns. It makes…when they finally get together…all the more satisfying. (hide spoiler)]I highly recommend picking this up when it releases in June. I absolutely adored it and sincerely hope that Rebecca Ross is not finished with this world that she’s created. There are so many more stories that she could tell. But even if she doesn’t, this standalone had a very rewarding ending and it’s been quite some time that a book has made me so happy.
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  • jessica
    January 1, 1970
    i did not expect to enjoy this as much as i did, so what a surprise gem this turned out to be.what i had the most fun with was the world building. i was so into the ancient greece vibes, the olive groves, the legions, and the gods. the characters are easy to root for and their cause is exciting. also, i appreciate that this is a standalone. most YA fantasy stories come in the form of a series and sometimes (aka most of the time) i dont want to commit to multiple books (hence the many series i ha i did not expect to enjoy this as much as i did, so what a surprise gem this turned out to be.what i had the most fun with was the world building. i was so into the ancient greece vibes, the olive groves, the legions, and the gods. the characters are easy to root for and their cause is exciting. also, i appreciate that this is a standalone. most YA fantasy stories come in the form of a series and sometimes (aka most of the time) i dont want to commit to multiple books (hence the many series i have yet to finish). i love an author who can take a fantasy world and create a well-developed and resolved standalone story with it.that being said, if RR writes more books set in the world, i will definitely read them!↠ 3.5 stars
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  • Nick
    January 1, 1970
    I love books with interesting family dynamics
  • Stephanie L (catteabooks)
    January 1, 1970
    My classical heart just cannot because this looks so good:- sisters- ancient Greece- magic and myths- girls in bronze armor- olive gardens- ancient Greece
  • Chloe
    January 1, 1970
    *Spoiler free*I originally sort of pushed this book to the side. It sounded good, but something I would get to in the future. I'm not sure what pulled me back to it, but I decided I really wanted to read it. My friend is a huge fan of this author (hi Mo!), so I knew I wanted to at least give it a try. Plus, I'm finding that I'm really drawn to sisters stories. And one of the sisters takes on part of the other sister's punishment? And its a fate worse than death? But the punishment isn't describe *Spoiler free*I originally sort of pushed this book to the side. It sounded good, but something I would get to in the future. I'm not sure what pulled me back to it, but I decided I really wanted to read it. My friend is a huge fan of this author (hi Mo!), so I knew I wanted to at least give it a try. Plus, I'm finding that I'm really drawn to sisters stories. And one of the sisters takes on part of the other sister's punishment? And its a fate worse than death? But the punishment isn't described and we have no idea what it could be. Yes, that sounded like something I wanted to read and something I wanted to know more of.After reading this one, I can understand where Mo's love of this author comes from. I'm ready to scream my love of this book from the rooftops.Alright, I'm not quite where to start. I guess I'll start with the world. Wow, it was something to behold. It's absolutely gorgeous, in a soft feeling kind of way. There are dark parts and there are evil things that are apart of it. Gods trapped beneath mountains, a mage who sends phantoms to protect the mountain, and some people who are horrible. Still, the beauty of it shines through. Halcyon and Evadne's home is in a grove with olive trees and it has tons of sunshine. I honestly thought it was just really beautiful.And this world has mages and scribes and warriors, and I just found everything about it so brilliant. I loved every part it of, from mountain with evil in its depths to the city where Evadne has to go to serve part of her sentence. It fit the story really, really well and it shined through.I also really loved the characters. Halcyon and Evadne were so different. Halcyon is a warrior and she wants to fight. Evadne is softer, but no less fierce. She craves magic, but does not have any. So, she finds other ways to help and her own ways to fight. The sisters love each other so much and they are willing to do anything for each other. Their bond was so strong and I loved seeing how much they loved each other. It felt really special.The familial relationships were also something really amazing. I love seeing parents who adore their children. Evadne and Halcyon have a big family, and they all live in the grove together. I loved all of them and I loved seeing them interact. They all cared so deeply for each other.Even the characters who weren't related by blood, but shared that familial connected was something I really loved. There was pain ingrained in these relationships (I have to be vague because of spoilers!), and situations that had no right answer to them. But there is still love underneath everything. I really, really liked seeing those relationships play out and how they developed. It wasn't something I've seen in a lot of books before, but I really liked see it. It was complicated and it was painful, but it was also full of love.There is also a male main character that I seriously adored. He was so kind. He wasn't kind to make people happy or anything like that, he was kind because that's the kind of person he was. I dunno, but it felt really special to me. He was a really solid guy, because that's who he was at his core. He was kind and I know that seems like a small word, but it felt really big to me. Plus, it created the sweetest romance and some of the things he said made my heart want to explode out of my chest.I also loved how magic and the gods were integrated into this book. They weaved themselves into the plot. I don't quite know how to describe them other than they were fascinating.Alright, maybe I should take about the actual plot haha. IT WAS VERY VERY GOOD. It's cloaked in secrets and filled with that complicated pain. And there are so many plot twists. There was one near the beginning and even then I was shocked. I loved how information was withheld from the reader to build suspense. It didn't feel frustrating, it felt like a very calculated move and it created a feeling that I couldn't turn the pages fast enough. It was really smart.The plot was big and was something that felt world ending. But, this book is a standalone. I feel like it could have been more than one book, but I also like that it wasn't. It's packed full of so much, but not in a way that feels overwhelming. Everything that happens has it's place. Plus, I liked that everything was wrapped up in the end!Ah, I can't say enough good things about this book. There were magical relics, hidden alliances, complicated pain, familial relationships, an amazing male character, amazing female characters, magic, scribes, mountains with evil within them, and so much more. I really, really loved this book. It was so good!
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  • The Nerd Daily
    January 1, 1970
    Originally published on The Nerd Daily | Review by Tasha LeighThe worldbuilding and imagery associated with Sisters of Sword and Song was very good and draws the reader into the world that Ross has created. It has a beautiful but simple cover that draws the eye and intrigues the mind. The map is relatively plain but provides a reference to which one can refer when attempting to understand where everyone is throughout the narrative. While the majority of the characters were a little on the dull s Originally published on The Nerd Daily | Review by Tasha LeighThe worldbuilding and imagery associated with Sisters of Sword and Song was very good and draws the reader into the world that Ross has created. It has a beautiful but simple cover that draws the eye and intrigues the mind. The map is relatively plain but provides a reference to which one can refer when attempting to understand where everyone is throughout the narrative. While the majority of the characters were a little on the dull side, there is a cute romantic interest to tide the reader over until the hit the final third where all the big things go down.Read the FULL REVIEW on The Nerd Daily
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  • Deekay
    January 1, 1970
    A tale of two sisters and their journey to save the kingdom from evil forces. It was full of magic, dangerous adventures, tough challenges, and sweet moments.This book exceeded my expectation. I knew that this book would be excellent because I’ve read one of Rebecca’s book before called The Queen’s Rising, and it was an excellent book. I had no doubt this one would be the same too, and turns out I was right. She’s back at it again writing a wonderful story, and delivering it in a fabulous way. I A tale of two sisters and their journey to save the kingdom from evil forces. It was full of magic, dangerous adventures, tough challenges, and sweet moments.This book exceeded my expectation. I knew that this book would be excellent because I’ve read one of Rebecca’s book before called The Queen’s Rising, and it was an excellent book. I had no doubt this one would be the same too, and turns out I was right. She’s back at it again writing a wonderful story, and delivering it in a fabulous way. I would buy any books written by her, she is my only auto-buy author so far.Sisters of Sword and Song is a very wonderful book. A lot of things happening in the book was truly amazing. It was an incredibly well-plotted story and the storyline was really remarkable. It wasn’t an easily predictable story, and the story held so many surprises in it. I was truly amazed by it and the twists too. The twists made me put the book down a lot of times, just so I can take in everything that was revealed. I was like, “IS THIS REAL???,” “WHAT???,” “I CANNOT BELIEVE IT.” I was caught off guard a lot of times but I enjoyed the surprises. It was really impressive.The story is about two sisters named Halcyon and Evadne, and their journey to save the kingdom from people with evil intentions. Halcyon was supposed to serve her sentence for 15 years due to the accident that happened between her and her shield brother, Xander. But Evadne came forward to take 5 years of her sister’s sentence and discover a lot of things she didn’t know before. Damon (Xander’s younger brother) and Evadne paired up to complete a dangerous mission to save the kingdom, while Halcyon was working to save the kingdom differently from them.There are a lot happening in the story. It mainly focused on the relics which all came from different god and goddesses. I liked the concept of the story actually. How the gods and goddesses is important and why their relics played a huge part in everything that happened in this book. Each gods and goddesses had a relic that can give someone different abilities, and I find it so mesmerizing. Also, the references to Greek mythology made me feel so giddy. As a person who has been a long-time fan of mythologies, I will never get tired of seeing the references of it in books. I can definitely see how the ancient Greece inspired some of the things in this book. No wonder this story is wonderful and so excellent from the start to the end.Now I’m going to move to the subject of the actions and the magic system which I’ve been dying to talk about. This book doesn’t just have a wonderful story and an unpredictable plot, but it also have amazing actions—especially the lyrically beautiful duel between mages. I’ll never get over how beautiful it was written. I’ve never read anything like this before, the concept of the magic in this book is very unique and different than other concept of magic in other books I’d read.In this one, the magic is either by speaking or singing, but mostly it was done by singing which I find it to be so fascinating. The mages in this book are quite smart. They created their own magic and then use it by singing it for most of the time. Hence the reason why I said the magic in this book is unique. Usually, magic can be use by either a wand or just shoot it from the hands, but in this one it doesn’t need any of those two. You sing it, your magic will show itself, and it will protect you and help you defeat your enemies if you continue to sing it. Another thing I liked is how the mages needed their scribe to help back them up during a duel. That is the thing I liked seeing the most. Mages are considered powerful since they have magical abilities, but here they have a weakness and their scribe is the key to help them achieve their success in a duel. This is being added to the list of things that surprises me while I was reading this book.That is one thing, another thing was the swords fighting. I will never ever get over how amazing swords fighting is in every fantasy books. Here, there wasn’t a lot of swords fighting, but the amounts are just enough to keep the readers satisfied. At least, there was another action that doesn’t required magic. I also come to understand the reason why there are two different actions; sword and song (magic). Each represent the ability of each sister, and when I realized it, I wasn’t just shocked but also had my mind blown. Rebecca is so clever, this is one of the many reasons why she is my top favorite author.To me, all of the actions are extremely intense, especially the duel between mages. I find that to be the most extreme action considering how hard it is to create your own enchantments and sing it with all your power and strength. But the outcome of doing it when you’re just an average mage doesn’t look so good. I was impressed by how the actions of both magic and non-magic were written. I can never ever forget it.Aside from all of that, the story also has a lot of surprises in it. Especially the type of surprise that shocked you when you learn the truth about something or someone, and also when you met with a plot twist. What I noticed the most from the story is the fact that each characters have secrets they’d been holding from everyone, and the moment I found out what secrets each of them held, I was shocked—like extremely shocked. Evadne’s family kept a big secret, and so does Damon’s family. I loved how everything is connected and it blew my mind to find out about it. One mission connects all characters. It was just so fascinating to see how the characters in this book are connected to each other—be it directly or indirectly—due to the one mission all of them had to complete on their own. This is one of the most cleverest thing I ever read in a fantasy book.Now moving on to the characters...There are so many characters in this book and most of them are very likable, and some are not (as in, they’re the bad guys). Damon, Evadne, and Halcyon are the lead characters in the story while the others are the side characters.Damon is a young mage, the same age as Evadne. Even though in the book, it was stated a couple times that he is just an average mage, and not as powerful as the other mages. But, Damon is powerful to me. He had the courage to go up against a much more powerful mage and used the magic he created on his own to battle the said mage. His bravery and confidence are the keys to his success, and why he wasn’t afraid to battle someone so powerful than him. He reached his full potential as a mage, and that resulted in him being so powerful in his own league even though he was still considered average, but that doesn’t matter anymore since he managed to handle the battle just fine even with Evadne’s help.Damon is a sweet and charming young man. He has a good heart and has been so kind to Evadne. He was the only one who treated her as if she is his friend while the others treated her a bit harshly. He sees Evadne as his equal and he always have a strong faith in her. The fact that he trusted her the most warms my heart. All the good things he did only proved that he is an overall a good person with a good heart. He’s wise beyond his age, has a strong and good manners, possessed a mature attitude, and has a strong personality. All of this makes his character so enjoyable to read, and to get to know more.Evadne is just as interesting as Damon. I do feel sorry for her the most because she was the innocent in all of this chaos and yet she did the bravest thing ever by stepping up to serve some of his sister’s sentence in order to find out what was going on. I teared up a bit at the part when she stood up and made the decision that forever changed her life. She’s young but wiser than most grown-ups, and she showed her bravery in front of the crowds and that moment alone deserved a standing ovation.She might not have any fighting skills and magic, but her wise mind and smart brain are enough to help her get out of any bad situations. She doesn’t need to train as a warrior for her to be able to fight her enemy, and she definitely didn’t need any power to help her face a greater challenge. I do understand if some people might find her boring because she is the most normal character in this book, but being normal is unique too. And never once did I ever find her boring, to me she is very much interesting just like the others. I never see her as a weak character because she is definitely strong, and strong doesn’t have to be physical strength or how much power a person possess. Being strong can come in many form but in Evadne’s case, it came from her mind. Being the only one without any magical abilities or any fighting skills make her the most stand out character. She’s very clever, always love to help others, so caring, born to be kind, and most importantly, she has a very quick thinking. Her bright personality fits her well.Halcyon which is Evadne’s older sister is part of the Bronze Legion, a group of the queen’s warrior who are loyal to their commander and their queen only. Halcyon’s loyalty to her commander and her queen never faded, it stays strong and still going strong despite how many times she was tortured by the enemies. Her spirit is hard to break, she’s not only physically tough, but also emotionally and mentally tough which is hard for the enemies to get any useful informations from her. The things she did at the start of the story had me confused but it was just a big misunderstanding. Despite all the things she endured, and how weak her state is, she still wanted to fight against the enemies to bring justice. I admired her just as I did Evadne and Damon.Some of the characters that surprised me are Lord Straton, and Thales. I thought Straton will turn out to be the shadiest character and eventually the main bad guy in the story, but I was wrong. He was actually kind but with cold demeanor, this surprised me a lot. As for Thales, he doesn’t appeared much but just enough for me liked his character due to his honesty, kindness, and his strong urge to help the legion in defeating the greater enemy. These two are truly the most surprising characters.About the main villain...I don’t expect it at all, but from the few times she appeared and the way she spoke that one time during her family dinner, I knew right away that something doesn’t sit right with her. It was being revealed a bit early but not too early in the book that she is the main villain. It was fine by me to find out that early because then the rest of the story will have more room to develop her character as the main villain and to have her achieve the evil things she wanted to do so that she will be seen as powerful and unbeatable. I never liked her the moment she opened her mouth and insulted Evadne. She’s the most shadiest character and I do get why she was so terrifying. Rebecca did a great job in developing this one particular character as the villain, and the progress of the said character become the villain was quite scary but I was impressed.Can we please appreciate how beautiful, clean, and sweet romance between Damon and Evadne is. One other thing I like about Rebecca’s writing is how she managed to write a beautifully sweet slow-burn romance between her two characters and still make it realistic. I knew that Damon and Evadne eventually end up together, all the hints are there since the first time they laid eyes on each other. Their relationship started off as two strangers then to two friends who are working together on a secret mission and it eventually ended up with these two becoming lovers. I’m actually all in and been supporting Damon and Evadne’s relationship from the start. This is how a slow-burn romance should be done.I loved that the process of their relationship is slowly evolving into something more. The development was solid and on point. I don’t see a single flaw in it. It was one of the purest relationship I’ve ever seen. Honestly, I was happy they ended up together. Damon and Evadne are each other’s equal in a lot of ways. They’ve spent a lot of times together that it was easy to have them developed a strong romantic feelings to each other. They bonded through their joy of singing the magic, through the deadliest missions they had to complete, and through the many obstacles they both had to face when they were off to a great but very challenging adventure.The last few chapters broke my heart after learning what will happen to Damon and how Evadne will cope with the changes. There was a scene that foreshadowed Damon’s fate and the horror of seeing it become a reality was so traumatizing. But I have no doubt Rebecca would find a way to bring these two back again and the ending really proved that. Damon eventually find his way back to Evadne, and that was the most wonderful thing ever. I thought Rebecca was about to pull a Romeo & Juliet type of ending, I was glad it didn’t go that way.Overall, this book is a very excellent book and I enjoyed it and literally devoured it in one sitting. Any book by Rebecca Ross are bound to be great, I have no doubt about it at all. This book put me on edge the whole time, the story drew me in, the plot intrigued me, the world-building is fantastic, and the characters entertained me. This is definitely one of my top favorite read of 2020 and no one can change my mind. This makes me feel like I’m in the story going on a journey with the characters. The joy of experiencing the story by reading it for the first time will always be the special moment I can never forget.P/S: after I was done reading this book, I finally knew the meaning behind the title and why ‘Sword’ and ‘Song’ are in it. Each is the symbol for each sister and I was in awed when I realized it. Rebecca is a genius for making the title. And also, the cover...it’s so gorgeous and unique, but most importantly the pictures in the cover are basically describing the story in a non-spoilery way but enough for those who have read the book to understand the meaning behind it. Whoever made the cover is so clever in making it. Little things like these made me appreciate it.
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  • Julie
    January 1, 1970
    **Thank you HarperCollins Canada for an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.**Wow. I am so glad that I got to read an advanced copy of this book! I was so excited for this premise, to see a YA book that focuses on familial and sister bonds.My actual rating is probably closer to 3.5 stars, and I will explain more about that below.Okay, I want to go over the things that I loved first because they far outweigh the other aspects.- SISTERS. I was so excited to see that a familial relations **Thank you HarperCollins Canada for an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.**Wow. I am so glad that I got to read an advanced copy of this book! I was so excited for this premise, to see a YA book that focuses on familial and sister bonds.My actual rating is probably closer to 3.5 stars, and I will explain more about that below.Okay, I want to go over the things that I loved first because they far outweigh the other aspects.- SISTERS. I was so excited to see that a familial relationship was the highlight and focus of this novel. And that is is siblings who love each other, and care about each other so much that they would do anything for each other. Their relationship was so amazing. I like that it showed the jealousy and sibling rivalry, but counteracted it with the way that they looked out for each other.- FAMILY. Not only does this book focus on sisters, it focuses on family altogether. I can't even think of a YA fantasy book that has so much of it's plot focused on family. And get this - both of the main families have BOTH PARENTS ALIVE!? I was pleasantly surprised. I was honestly getting a little tired of one or both parents needing to be dead or missing to drive the YA hero or heroine's story. It was so REFRESHING that the parents were present and cared about their children.- The magic system was really intriguing! I found the number of gods and goddesses a little difficult to follow at first. It was a lot of information for a stand alone, but the information is giving to you multiple times in ways that work well into the story to remind you. And the magic that comes with it is really interesting! I loved that the magic was around both magicians and relics. I actually want to know more about the magic and the magic system!- The characters are so fantastic. The women are all BADASS. Even the side characters, and the ones who are not the likeable female characters, are so badass! Both Evadne and Halcyon are so incredibly strong in their own ways, and persevere through the trials that they are given. It really helped having both of their POVs to see how incredible they are in their own person, and from each other's perspectives. I also loved all of the other characters. I don't think there was a single character that I wasn't interested in. I almost wish that we had gotten more!- The journeys! In case you all haven't noticed, I am a big sucker for having a physical journey in the story. It's so great to see the characters put through trials and how they fare!And quickly, I am going to touch on the few things that didn't work for me.- Okay, don't get me wrong. I enjoyed the romance that was in it and the twists and turns that happened with it. And this is more my issue, but I was kind of frustrated that is seemed to be a combination of insta-love, friends to lovers, and a touch of enemies to lovers? I can't pin it.- There were two scenes that were integral to the story. The first is the mission. Pieces of it just didn't work for me, and it felt like it was all for nothing. I was a little confused why it happened? And the second is the battle. It was so short! It felt like the culmination point and it seemed so short for being what everything was leading up to. I was kind of surprised.- The biggest struggle that I had with the book was that a lot of the plot felt disjointed. It felt a little bit like pieces or chunks were written separately and then pieced together, and I couldn't see the connection between the two major plot points. I think there needed to be a bit more connection.This book had so many things that I was very excited about, and the majority of the pacing was fantastic! I loved the characters and the familial focus of the book.It was a good read and I really enjoyed it! I read it fairly quickly because I just didn't want to put it down.
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  • Jules ✨
    January 1, 1970
    ancient greek world? close bond between sisters? slow burn romance? rebecca ross is serving.
  • Rosaline (Rosaline's Rolls & Scrolls)
    January 1, 1970
    Well, now I have a brand new shelf titled: Something of Something and Something.Seriously, stop! The book world would be a better place if these YA formulas ceased to exist. I'm taking a lonely crusade against these Something of Something and Something titles. It's getting old and I need a new source of entertainment!   Well, now I have a brand new shelf titled: Something of Something and Something.Seriously, stop! The book world would be a better place if these YA formulas ceased to exist. I'm taking a lonely crusade against these Something of Something and Something titles. It's getting old and I need a new source of entertainment!  
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  • Isabel Ibañez
    January 1, 1970
    Incredibly lovely.
  • Uma | Books.Bags.Burgers
    January 1, 1970
    (A huge thank you to the FFBC tours and the publisher for the eARC of the book)The Queen's Rising by Rebecca Ross is one of those books that took me by surprise. I hadn't expected it to love it so much but I did and I think the author's latest book makes me feel so too. It definitely exceeded expectations and I read it in almost one sitting. ~5 REASONS TO READ THIS BOOK ASAP~ ~Underdog protagonists who will make you feel and root for them~ Something I've loved in the author's previous duol (A huge thank you to the FFBC tours and the publisher for the eARC of the book)The Queen's Rising by Rebecca Ross is one of those books that took me by surprise. I hadn't expected it to love it so much but I did and I think the author's latest book makes me feel so too. It definitely exceeded expectations and I read it in almost one sitting. ~5 REASONS TO READ THIS BOOK ASAP~ ~Underdog protagonists who will make you feel and root for them~ Something I've loved in the author's previous duology is how her main characters aren't all powerful, supremely strong characters who can do anything at all. They're normal people who grow to be something more with sheer hard work and willpower.Sisters of Sword and Song does this too. Gives you protagonists who are flawed and real, protagonists who make it easy for us readers to root for them. Evadne suffered a dog attack leaving her ankle permanently sore, making her limp badly on cold days. She's a girl who dreams of magic but has accepted there's none within herself. She envies her older sister but loves her fiercely all the same. she isn't the most strongest or cleverest person around but she's fierce and loyal and always tries her best. Also personal note - When Evadne asked if she could please have a chiton with POCKETS, I totally whooped. YOU TELL THEM GIRL!There is steel within me.I will not bend.I will not break. Halcyon envies her younger sister for having the most of her parents' affections. She's strong and brave and a fighter to the core but she's made mistakes and will do anything to amend them.And now she was finally being held by the father of her soul, the man who had loved her in his own quiet, steel-sharpened way. Damon has the magic than Evadne envies but he thinks himself average. Not great, not bad but just somewhere in the middle. He is gentle and kind and also wants to prove himself to his father even though he feels he'll fall short of the person his brother had been.And I rooted for all three of them throughout the book. ~All the family wholesomeness~ This is something I also loved in The Queen's Rising. The wholesome and supportive family and familial love. Evadne's family is the best. I loved that while they don't have as much page time as the sisters did, they still make their mark. I'm so here for loving parents, annoying cousins and all that comes with being a family. I loved the descriptions of their home and the little stories from their lives. ~Sibling love that makes me cry happily~ Seriously this should be a more popular trope. Amazing siblings who love each other and hold each other up. Evadne and Hal are so different from each other but they are each other's strengths and they keep each other marching forward. I liked that the book also shows the envy they have for each other and the times where they argued about things. Evadne threaded their fingers together. It was the hand Halcyon had killed with, the hand Evadne had written spells with. Two very different hands and two very different women, and yet they had sharpened the other, upheld the other. Defended and protected and healed one another. Seriously, I want to start a petition for loving, realistic sibling love in books! ~The mythology and World Building~ The story is set in an alternate Ancient Greek world. The pantheon is made up of 9 divines who no longer walk among humans. Instead they left behind relics the humans could use. They hoped commoners would find them rather than people who already wielded magic. Mages are descended from the divines themselves and each has a different amount of magic within themselves. I loved seeing the politics of uneven power play out. I would totally read more books set in this world because it's fascinating. I want to read more myths about the divines and see how the humans play out their politics. ~The romance is not all-encompassing~ The romance is gentle and sweet and something of a slow-burn. It is a predictable ship but lovely all the same. And I liked that while there was a bit of romance it never took away from the main plot or the story; it simply added to the magic of it all. Sisters of Sword and Song is a beautiful standalone filled with magic, myths, sisterly love a a sweet romance.
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  • Ashleigh
    January 1, 1970
    * I received an arc from the author and the publisher, Harper Teen in exchange for an honest review*I absolutely loved this beautiful book! This is the third book I’ve read by Rebecca Ross, and she definitely has a fan for life in me. Her writing is so alluring and captivating, and I was drawn into the story from the very beginning.This standalone YA Fantasy takes place in an alternate Ancient Greek world. The setting is so lush and vivid. I loved the unique mythology. There were 9 “divines” tha * I received an arc from the author and the publisher, Harper Teen in exchange for an honest review*I absolutely loved this beautiful book! This is the third book I’ve read by Rebecca Ross, and she definitely has a fan for life in me. Her writing is so alluring and captivating, and I was drawn into the story from the very beginning.This standalone YA Fantasy takes place in an alternate Ancient Greek world. The setting is so lush and vivid. I loved the unique mythology. There were 9 “divines” that left behind earthly relics for humankind to find that contained magical properties, and some of them were never recovered. The divine that the two main characters, Halcyon and Evadne were descended from was fallen. Evadne was always fascinated with magic though, and hoped that she would have it somehow. Halcyon is a great fighter, and could beat the boys, and outrun everyone, and so joined the Queen’s army when she was very young. The two sisters were very close, and Evadne missed Halcyon terribly when she left. They are about to finally be reunited after eight long years, when Halcyon arrives earlier than expected, and Evadne surmises that things have gone terribly wrong. Halcyon is being hunted by her commander and the charge is murder. Halcyon’s life winds up being spared at her trial, but the punishment is very heavy. Evadne volunteers to take part of her sentence, and get to the bottom of what happened with her sister. And so begins an epic adventure, and things aren’t all as they seem.I truly enjoyed the relationship between the two sisters and how strong their bond was, even though they had been apart for eight years. They were truly devoted to each other and would do anything to protect the other. I also loved that they came from a big loving family that all lived together in the olive grove in Isaura. You could just feel the love between them all.When Evadne goes to serve her portion of Halcyon’s sentence, she is sent to a city. The city is full of warriors, mages, scribes, and even prisoners. I love how we see Evadne grow and change and come into her own, as she’s separated from her sister and her family. There’s a male character that she meets in the city that I completely adore. He’s so caring and kind, and a romance blossoms that completely made me swoon.If you enjoy stories about kick butt warriors, mages and scribes, strong females, family relationships, pain that is complex, slow burn romance, and more importantly sisterhood, hope, and forgiveness, then this book is for you. Do yourself a favor and add this to your TBR. You won’t regret it!
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  • The Candid Cover (Olivia & Lori)
    January 1, 1970
    I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that the cover was the first thing that had me adding this book to my TBR. It really does have a way of luring you in. I have yet to read any of this author’s novels, but they seem to be quite popular. I look forward to finding out more about this book set in Ancient Greece.
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  • Nicole N. (A Myriad of Books)
    January 1, 1970
    I picked up an early copy from the publisher’s booth while attending the North Texas Teen Book Festival in March 2020.Oh man, this book was surprisingly good. So soft and gentle. Fierce and loyal. I was afraid I wouldn’t like it because I didn’t care for Ross’s previous series. This book was such a pleasant surprise.I have a soft spot for healthy sibling relationships, so Evadne and Halcyon’s was just so sweet and good. Their love for one another hadn’t diminished since Hal has been gone for eig I picked up an early copy from the publisher’s booth while attending the North Texas Teen Book Festival in March 2020.Oh man, this book was surprisingly good. So soft and gentle. Fierce and loyal. I was afraid I wouldn’t like it because I didn’t care for Ross’s previous series. This book was such a pleasant surprise.I have a soft spot for healthy sibling relationships, so Evadne and Halcyon’s was just so sweet and good. Their love for one another hadn’t diminished since Hal has been gone for eight years—it morphed, changed, into something new and different because Eva and Hal are both different. But the journey they take separately and together is beautiful.I really thought I would end up hating Lord Straton and his family. I’m glad that wasn’t the case and I really enjoying seeing the lives of his family meme era intertwine with that of Hal and Eva’s. I expected something brutal and harsh but this book is a bit of a reminder that there are good people in the world who have to make tough choices, and they’ll do what they can to protect the ones they love even if it means still having to punish them.I feel like I can’t say much because most of it would be considered a spoiler...The writing was wonderful as was the plot, though I wish we had gotten to know particular characters just a little bit more. We’re told a lot of stuff but I wanted more to be shown, especially regarding the Queen. Because this is a stand-alone fantasy, we don’t have sequels that will continue to draw out the action and the emotions of the characters. But I found that perfectly okay. The world-building was great, and if you’re a fan of Ancient Greece/Rome, you’ll find a friend in this book.There is a small amount of romance in this book and I also found that to be really sweet. It’s soft and gentle too, and while the chapters leading up to the end broke my heart, the epilogue really heals it.
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  • The Clever Reader
    January 1, 1970
    Evadne is surprised to see her sister Halcyon in her room the day before she's expected. Eva has no idea that in just a few days her sister will be sentenced for murder and Eva will be requesting to take part of her sentence.Halcyon is a warrior accused of murdering the commander's son Xander. Follow her journey as she reveals her crime isn't as simple as it sounds. Her and Xander were tasked with a secret mission to uncover a very powerful relic. Now she's been sentenced to the quarry and surro Evadne is surprised to see her sister Halcyon in her room the day before she's expected. Eva has no idea that in just a few days her sister will be sentenced for murder and Eva will be requesting to take part of her sentence.Halcyon is a warrior accused of murdering the commander's son Xander. Follow her journey as she reveals her crime isn't as simple as it sounds. Her and Xander were tasked with a secret mission to uncover a very powerful relic. Now she's been sentenced to the quarry and surrounded by her enemies. Will she be able to survive?Evadne didn't know what to expect when she took 5 years of Halcyon's sentence to be served in the commander's household. Another surprise to Eva is when Damon offers her a position as his scribe and their partnership leads them on a journey to completing the mission their siblings were unable to finish. They may find a bit of love along the way.I love stories about sisters. I am very close with mine so any time I hear of a book with that kind of relationship in it than I try to pick it up. It's one we don't see as often in books because most people are there for the love interests. This one did not disappoint in showing how much each of these sisters were willing to sacrifice for one another. It's a strong bond and no matter what happened to them along their individual journey's their goal was always to find each other again.I enjoyed this fast-paced YA fantasy and would definitely recommend it if you're looking for betrayal, adventure, and love in your next read!
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  • Sarah
    January 1, 1970
    4.25 ⭐ What a beautiful book !The writing was so beautiful and lyrical, the relationships incredibly deep and touching, and the Ancient Greece setting was e-ve-ry-thing. Filled with fantasy, mythology, slow burning romance, this book has everything honestly. My favorite points about this book were the sisters relationship, which was so touching but also imperfect and that's what made it so pure and real! I wish it was a trilogy, because I'm gonna miss these characters, but it's also great that i 4.25 ⭐ What a beautiful book !The writing was so beautiful and lyrical, the relationships incredibly deep and touching, and the Ancient Greece setting was e-ve-ry-thing. Filled with fantasy, mythology, slow burning romance, this book has everything honestly. My favorite points about this book were the sisters relationship, which was so touching but also imperfect and that's what made it so pure and real! I wish it was a trilogy, because I'm gonna miss these characters, but it's also great that it is a standalone because I could not ask for a better ending.This book had such a nice summer atmosphere with olive groves, characters wearing chitons and a vivid picture of Ancient Greece perfectly described by the author. « Failure is never final unless you choose it to be. Where there is life, hope can be found. » I fell in love with Rebecca Ross's writing when I read her debut novel, The Queen's Rising, back in 2018, and honestly, her books have never disappointed me since.You guys don't want to miss out this book! It will be released on June 23rd and you can also pre-order a signed copy on Good Choice Reading's website !Thank you to the author and Edelweiss for gifting me an e-ARC of this book.
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  • Steph
    January 1, 1970
    This book 😍 I loved everything about this book! The mythology, the characters, the settings, the relics and the storyline!
  • Shelby Day
    January 1, 1970
    I love Rebecca Ross’s writing style. Her ability to build characters, and worlds, and cultures is a beautiful thing. This story features not one, but two strong female leads. It is a classic good vs evil story, but goes even deeper by adding in the love between two sisters and another arc of a sister coming into her own talents and believing in herself. It is well worth your time to read. It is a stand alone novel and everything is nicely tied up at the end, but I wouldn’t mind hearing from some I love Rebecca Ross’s writing style. Her ability to build characters, and worlds, and cultures is a beautiful thing. This story features not one, but two strong female leads. It is a classic good vs evil story, but goes even deeper by adding in the love between two sisters and another arc of a sister coming into her own talents and believing in herself. It is well worth your time to read. It is a stand alone novel and everything is nicely tied up at the end, but I wouldn’t mind hearing from some of these characters in the future. I got a bit attached. ;) Ross is definitely on my must-read list. Can’t wait to see what she comes up with next. ***I received a free arc from the publisher, but this is a completely honest review.***
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  • Kat
    January 1, 1970
    #SistersofSwordandSong#MustReadYA2020#EpicReadWow! I was so excited when I saw that Rebecca Ross has a new novel coming out! She does not disappoint with Sisters of Sword and Song. It is a lovely blend of family, romance, and mythology. Young adult authors have been burning up my Goodreads page this year. I think this is one of my favorite books this year. It is an epic read of finding your own destiny. Plus, I love the cover of this book!
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  • Mary Seaman
    January 1, 1970
    ARC provided by Edelweiss:Loved this! I was sucked in from the first chapter and never let go. I loved the development of the sisters and their moments of strength but also of weakness. There was romance but I liked that it focused more on the sisters relationship (frozen vibes). There is violence but it’s not too graphic. Definitely recommend! Content warnings: violence
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  • Vee_Bookish // stan shea couleé
    January 1, 1970
    i already want a full series
  • Anandi Puritipati
    January 1, 1970
    4.5/5Somedays I'm like - oofé too many ARCsOther days I'm like - THANK THE HEAVENS I GOT AN ARC OF THIS.This was definitely one of the latter ones. I adored Rebecca Ross' debut duology and this book was also JUST PERFECT! ❤️Review will be up soon!Update (18/06/2020)- I received this copy from The Fantastic Flying Book Club as part of their blog tour. All the following opinions are my own. When Rebecca Ross’ debut duology came out, I wasn’t truly interested in it. I only ended up listening to the 4.5/5Somedays I'm like - oofé too many ARCsOther days I'm like - THANK THE HEAVENS I GOT AN ARC OF THIS.This was definitely one of the latter ones. I adored Rebecca Ross' debut duology and this book was also JUST PERFECT! ❤️Review will be up soon!Update (18/06/2020)- I received this copy from The Fantastic Flying Book Club as part of their blog tour. All the following opinions are my own. When Rebecca Ross’ debut duology came out, I wasn’t truly interested in it. I only ended up listening to the audiobooks because they were available on storytel and I was kinda bored. And I ended up falling in love with the story completely! Ross’ worldbuilding, writing and character work drew me in, so when the blog tour spots opened up for Sisters of Sword and Song, I knew I just *had* to get in! Sisters of Sword and Song is a fantasy novel set in a world inspired by the kingdoms of Ancient Greece and Rome. It has its own mythologies and systems of governance and everything, but you can find a touch of the Greeks and the Egyptians and the Romans in there. The story follows two sisters- Halcyon and Evadne- as they get wrapped up in a plot that is far bigger than either of them. I don’t want to give anything away, but rest assured, the story is filled to the brim with the best kind of heart-wrenching adventure that you could ask for in a novel. The book is a slow-burn adventure, though, which is very on-brand for Rebecca Ross, tbh. Ross takes a lot of time establishing the world, the characters, the relationships and their dynamics before plunging you into full-blown action. This definitely aids in making your reading experience more pleasurable because this is a standalone high fantasy novel that brings you face to face with an entire world you are unfamiliar with. And as much as I love the adrenaline high of a fast paced novel, I really appreciated the care lent to making this world seem as real as my own here. And it’s definitely one of the best aspects of the book!The main cast here is basically the two sisters. We have Halcyon, a warrior, a loyal servant of her kingdom and above all, most honorable. And then we have Evadne, quiet and kind and fierce in her kindness, always the one in the shadow of her elder sister, but the one with a heart so big, you could fit the world in it. Of the two, I related most with Evadne. She was simply one of the most beautiful people I’d ever read about and I couldn’t help falling in love with the way she was written. The character arcs for these two women are so so so well done! Halcyon goes from someone who is strong and who takes that strength for granted, to being someone who realizes that there is more to bravery than strength. And Evadne who is cocooned in a shell, unsure of who she is and what she is meant to be, finds her place in the world and occupies it with pride. I also adored the relationship between the sisters so damn much!!! That fierce, unconditional love made me feel so warm inside! Damon has an interesting arc too, but I honestly didn’t care about him as much as I did about the two sisters. Speaking of Damon, that romance between him and Evadne was the most beautiful, toe-curling, screaming-into-your-pillow, slowburn ever and I LOVED IT SO MUCH!!!!I don’t really have much to say about the writing because it’s beautiful and that’s all I can say, really. It definitely reads like an epic fantasy that alludes to so many unknowns in the world, with its lyrical prose and mysteriously beautiful tone, and that’s about it. If you’re someone who enjoys purple prose, you will definitely enjoy the writing in this book! And the plot is also very well done, while we’re on the matter. Like I said, there is so much you learn about the mundane in the beginning that when the plot starts unravelling, you find yourself at least a little surprised even if you did suspect those twists. It builds up real slow, but the payoff is so worth it! AND THAT ENDING!!! IT WAS SO BEAUTIFUL!!!!There are a lot of interesting themes explored in this book as well. The main character Evadne has....well, it isn’t exactly a disability, but her ankle isn’t right and she has trouble walking and running and all that stuff because of it. And of the main side characters, Thales, has a mangled hand. These are both things that hinder the two of them in their everyday life, and they still go about it anyway and they’re both addressed and talked about and included in the novel very naturally and I really appreciated that. The main plot of the novel deals a lot with people thinking themselves superior because of a certain thing that happened to them which is completely something that happens by chance and idk I feel like that stuff is pretty topical no? *looks at camera*Again, this novel isn’t without its flaws. There were definitely bits where I felt like things could have been elaborated on more, and there was also this portion in the end where I found myself questioning why a certain thing had to happen but these issues I had were very minor and didn’t really affect my enjoyment of the book!All in all, this was definitely one of the most enjoyable books for me this year! I think it’s beautifully done and I definitely would recommend you all to check it out when it hits the shelves this 23rd! Full review on IG : https://www.instagram.com/p/CBlQ9jNgH...
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  • Celia McMahon
    January 1, 1970
    Take my money. Take all of it.
  • Monique
    January 1, 1970
    Sisters of Sword and Song by Rebecca Ross is a YA fantasy standalone. And that’s one of the many things I love about it: no waiting for sequels! I really wish there were more fantasy standalones, and Rebecca Ross clearly proves that it can be done to have a whole new world captured in one book. This world is very intricate and well thought out, yet simple enough to understand without info dump. I think it’s based slightly on Roman/Greek mythology, with a pantheon of gods, and descendants of thos Sisters of Sword and Song by Rebecca Ross is a YA fantasy standalone. And that’s one of the many things I love about it: no waiting for sequels! I really wish there were more fantasy standalones, and Rebecca Ross clearly proves that it can be done to have a whole new world captured in one book. This world is very intricate and well thought out, yet simple enough to understand without info dump. I think it’s based slightly on Roman/Greek mythology, with a pantheon of gods, and descendants of those gods can have magical power and they left relics on earth that have magic properties. Evadne and Haldyon, the two sisters who are the main characters of this book, are from a fallen god who chose to be human out of love, so no special powers there! Evadne always thought she would have magic though, and is really fascinated by it. Haldyon has always been a very good fighter and can outrun anyone, and she joins the Queen’s army at a very young age. Years later, she is on the run from her commander and is charged with murder. Evadne offers to take half the sentence, and she ends up serving the commander while Haldyon is thrown in prison. But all is not as it seems, and plot twists and unexpected revelations will follow and throw both sisters into a bigger game... This book is so original! It wasn’t at all what I expected it to be, it was better! I loved the story of both sisters and their bond (even though they haven’t seen each other in years). And their big supportive family, and amazing loving parents. It reminded me a lot of my own family so that was really cool! And something you don’t quite often see in a fantasy... and yes, both Evadne and Haldyon had their own paths to go so they’re not in the book all the time but the scenes with the family were my favorite, you could feel the love and somehow I felt that love followed them on their quest and is part of their identity, especially with Evadne. I really enjoy her story line as it also features a young mage with a big heart. She also has a disability, her foot was hurt in a dog attack, but she doesn’t let herself be defined by this nor let it decrease her worth as a human being. I also really love the quest they went on, the villains were very well thought out and the world is very rich in imagery. I was really invested in the story and couldn’t wait to see how it went but I can’t say much about it because of spoilers. Above all, it was a story about love in all its forms, about bravery and sacrifice and standing up against evil, about flawed human beings and forgiveness. I received an e-arc in exchange for my honest opinion.
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  • Sofia Blackthorn Of The Wild Hunt
    January 1, 1970
    All the freaking stars! 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟A huge thank you to Harper Collins publishers and the author for this ARC. All opinions are my own. Sisters Of Sword And Song is Rebecca Ross’ new book, coming out June 2020.It tells the story of two sisters, Halcyon and Evadne of Isaura when the come together after many years apart, united by the purpose of saving their queen, and everyone they love.I really loved this! The ancient Greece inspired setting, the divines and the relics are perfectly combined with the m All the freaking stars! 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟A huge thank you to Harper Collins publishers and the author for this ARC. All opinions are my own. Sisters Of Sword And Song is Rebecca Ross’ new book, coming out June 2020.It tells the story of two sisters, Halcyon and Evadne of Isaura when the come together after many years apart, united by the purpose of saving their queen, and everyone they love.I really loved this! The ancient Greece inspired setting, the divines and the relics are perfectly combined with the magic system, immersing the reader into the story completely. Ross’ writing style is one I really love, having read The Queens Rising & The Queens Resistance and yet it managed to still surprise me, as I found it a bit different than in her previous books.The characters were well written and fleshed out, and as I neared the ending, I found myself wishing for more of Damon, Evadne and Halcyon. I really wished I could have seen more of the magic system, or maybe of Queen Nerine but none of it made me enjoy the story less.I can’t wait to get my hands to a physical copy and I’m definitely excited to read more of Ms.Ross!
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  • Fanna
    January 1, 1970
    - standalone so no suffering through a series- magical slow-burn romance- compared to Sky in the Deep so of course, that's good- urges me to pick up The Queen's Rising - standalone so no suffering through a series- magical slow-burn romance- compared to Sky in the Deep so of course, that's good- urges me to pick up The Queen's Rising
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  • Katie Smith
    January 1, 1970
    How are all her books so amazing. No review could do it justice, just do yourself a favor and pick this one up.
  • Leah
    January 1, 1970
    Yo, this is my first Rebeca Ross book, and I am sold. This book is something special that I adored from the first page. It has beautifully written characters, deep relationships, and a world that should feel tired but manages to stand out as something wonderful and fresh. Full review/blog tour stop at Write, Read, RepeatThis is a standalone set in a world of magic and political corruption, with two sisters at its core. I really liked the world building, especially since I wasn't expecting it to Yo, this is my first Rebeca Ross book, and I am sold. This book is something special that I adored from the first page. It has beautifully written characters, deep relationships, and a world that should feel tired but manages to stand out as something wonderful and fresh. Full review/blog tour stop at Write, Read, RepeatThis is a standalone set in a world of magic and political corruption, with two sisters at its core. I really liked the world building, especially since I wasn't expecting it to be based on Ancient Greece. It is a story rich in lore and is easy to picture. Once upon a time, nine gods came down to live among the mortals. Gods that are very similar to ones we've heard of like Artemis and Hermes with abilities on a similar scale. Before they fled, they left behind relics that people hunt down to wield the magic within. Some families even have the blood of these gods in their veins, and lean heavily into it for their identities. One god, Kirkos, fell to earth and chose to stay, giving up his wings for love. It is this god that is considered lesser, and who our two main characters are descended from.As one would expect from the title, this book follows two sisters: Evadne and Halcyon. I have no idea how to say either of their names out loud (I'm sorry) but I adore sister relationships when they're as strong and loving as this. Both have a big part to play in this story, and I thought it was both well-done and highlighted each girl's strengths beautifully.🖊 Evadne is the younger of the two. She has always wanted to be something more, like a mage, and has some feelings toward her ancestor, Kirkos. How could he give up what he was for love? When her sister is sentenced to 15 years labour and imprisonment, Evadne volunteers to take on some of of her punishment. This is how she comes to work first as a servant to the family her sister wronged, then scribe to Damon, which I'll describe later. I really enjoyed Evadne's story. It seemed more interesting to me and I found her to be a more intriguing character than her sister. 🗡 Halcyon left home eight years ago to join the legions and become a fierce hoplite. However, when she first appears in this story, she is on the run for murdering her shield mate. When she is caught and handed down her sentence, she begins the first portion of it at a marble quarry. It is there that the story truly begins to unfold with one heck of a backstory and a whole lot of serious implications for why she did what she did. There are some major political complexities and corruption in this story, but as the reader we are always on the fringes of it. Never quite in the thick of it. Essentially the queen is being controlled and passing laws that are out of character and damaging to her subjects, and the point of the story is to stop that from happening. It is not difficult to follow, but in being on the edge of it, some may find that the stakes aren't all that high. I did feel that a little in some parts, but this was such a big adventure with more of a focus on sisterly love and magic that I didn't mind. Of all the magic found in this book, I really enjoyed the concept of mages. Namely how they are identified. See, mages are unable to write with their dominant hands. No matter what they write, the ink simply flies off the page. Thus why they hire on scribes, who can record their spells and letters and such. I thought it to be such a fun touch to this world!I'm a firm believer standalones should have bittersweet endings. Almost all my favourites do, and this was no exception. There is a lot of loss, and a lot of change between characters, and it made that last chapter all the more wonderful and heartwarming.
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  • Olivia
    January 1, 1970
    See my full review here: https://www.yabookscentral.com/yafict...SISTERS OF SWORD AND SONG is an enchanting and lush YA fantasy. The story follows two sisters, Halcyon and Evadne, who have been separated for years by Halcyon's military training. Evadne is eager to have her sister home after her graduation, but she is surprised when Halcyon sneaks through her window and tells her that she has become a fugitive. The events that follow will show the strength of their bond and the trials of the coun See my full review here: https://www.yabookscentral.com/yafict...SISTERS OF SWORD AND SONG is an enchanting and lush YA fantasy. The story follows two sisters, Halcyon and Evadne, who have been separated for years by Halcyon's military training. Evadne is eager to have her sister home after her graduation, but she is surprised when Halcyon sneaks through her window and tells her that she has become a fugitive. The events that follow will show the strength of their bond and the trials of the country in which they reside.Halcyon and Evadne live in a world with magic- for a select few, who are born as mages. This ability manifests when they find they are unable to write, as their words slide off the paper. Mages have magic in their words and songs. Evadne desperately wanted to be a mage, but it was not to be- her older sister Halcyon comforted her with an invented language of their own. Halcyon was strong, bold, and fearless, heading off for the military where she was destined for great things.What I loved: The world-building is lush and compelling; the reader learns about magic, its manifestation in mages, and the artifacts that can be used to certain ends. The true strength of the story is in the sisterly bond between Halcyon and Evadne that shines throughout the book. Their connection is beautiful. While other characters are also fantastically built, the book manages to come back to the theme of sisterhood and its unbreakable bond.The book also touches on other themes such as corruption, morality of power/magic, and punishment- the weight of it and the way that it can change a person. These themes are woven within the overarching story of love, action, and adventure that make it really thought-provoking.What left me wanting more: There are a few things that I wish had more lead-up, such as Evadne's decision in the courtroom, the romance that builds, and Straton's feelings towards Halcyon. While we get glimpses of this, I felt that more internal thoughts/motivations or lead up to the decisions would have been helpful as they sometimes felt a bit blunt/shocking. I also would have loved to hear some of the mythology of the gods who left the relics/artifacts behind, because this world really fascinated me, and more history would have been intriguing.Final verdict: Overall, SISTERS OF SWORD AND SONG was a beautiful tale of sisterhood and the power of that unshakable bond. Highly recommend for fans of YA fantasy.Please note that I received an ARC from the publisher through edelweiss. All opinions are my own.
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