I was lucky enough to win a giveaway from Mark Lawrence that included a signed copy of The Girl and the Stars. So, thank so much again Mark Lawrence and That Thorn Guy.
When it comes to Mark Lawrence, it’s not a question of whether I will enjoy it or not. It’s more, how much am I going to love this? And I’m glad to say, though not surprised, that The Girl and the Stars is no different.
I cannot praise any of this enough. Every element, from plot, to characters, to prose. All brilliant.
“In the ice, east of the Black Rock, there is a hole into which broken children are thrown.”
The Girl and the Stars is set in the same world as The Book of the Ancestor trilogy, but you do not to read the previous series in order to fully appreciate this. I loved the subtle hints to the previous series, now in a time long gone, but new readers will not lose out, as this is set in an entirely separate environment, with a whole new set of trials and tribulations.
Once again, Lawrence has formed in these pages another set of memorable characters that are already cemented in my mind as brilliant. You quickly learn to either love them, or hate them, or both. There are not many writers who can inspire this variation of emotions within me, but Lawrence is an exception, and he repeatedly does it with ease.
Our main protagonist is the teenager Yaz, a young woman who is ascending into adulthood. She lives in the harsh frozen land of the ice, with the tribe of the Ictha. A dangerous place, where all must live together in a life of hardship in order so somehow survive. But, before she is fully accepted as an adult, all must face a test with a man named, the regulator. Those who fail are pushed into a black hole, and are renamed, The Broken… No one knows what happens to these, but Yaz believes that she is soon to find out.
“Only when it’s darkest you can see the stars”
Now onto the prose. Just, wow! That’s all that need be said really. Lawrence does not waste a word, but somehow manages to incite a fast-pace, along with plenty of time for interesting character development and world building. He has truly mastered how to combine all these aspects into his writing, allowing the reader to finish with a mesmerising experience.
So, Mark Lawrence has shown me again why he is one of my favourite authors of all time, Every book I have read of his has been a 5-star rating, and this is no exception. I LOVED this, and will find it a very difficult time as I await news for the sequel, which Lawrence has already written and is now being edited. Everyone, you need to read this, and if you can, read The Book of the Ancestor trilogy, which is in my top five series of all time.
Blurb: In Mystic Class Nona Grey begins to learn the secrets of the universe. But so often even the deepest truths just make our choices harder. Before she leaves the Convent of Sweet Mercy Nona must choose her path and take the red of a Martial Sister, the grey of a Sister of Discretion, the blue of a Mystic Sister or the simple black of a Bride of the Ancestor and a life of prayer and service.
All that stands between her and these choices are the pride of a thwarted assassin, the ambition of a would-be empress wielding the Inquisition like a blade, and the vengeance of the empire’s richest lord.
As the world narrows around her, and her enemies attack her through the system she has sworn to, Nona must find her own path despite the competing pull of friendship, revenge, ambition, and loyalty.
And in all this only one thing is certain. There will be blood.
One Word Kill is an immersive, unique and fun journey is a constant series of emotions.
"It's always a shock, when you've been hit by a calamity, to see the world go about its business with perfect indifference."
One Word Kill is the first book in the Impossible Times series by Mark Lawrence. It has many similar aspects to Stranger Things, as it is set in the 1980s, and the central characters are teenagers who love D&D.
What a brilliant read!
The prose was incredibly fluid and smooth, just as it was with every other book by Mark Lawrence I have read. The journey from page to page was easy, and time did not come into account as I read from one chapter to the next. It created the perfect tone, with humour embedded perfectly throughout, without distracting from the serious scenes created.
The plot was fantastic and a lot happened considering the small page-count of this book. Each event that took place was clever and developed the plot to another level, and led on to another chapter of unexpected scenes. During this, there was a significant amount of character development that was brilliantly portrayed through decisions in pivotal moments, and their actions rather than thoughts.
"Simon looked at the world differently. He was the sort to notice the number plate of a car hurtling toward him. The rest of us would be busy getting out the way."
It is partly because of this that the characters were my favourite aspect of the novel. The dialogue and interactions expanded them further, and the D&D sessions were just wonderful. Immersive, hilarious and interesting. Each person was established with their own set of realistic characteristics that were consistent and succeeded in either making me love them, or hate them.
"If you've no intention of obeying, then why not agree?"
One Word Kill was an absolute five-star read, no question about it. There was constant enjoyment oozing from every page. I was invested in the lives of these characters and found myself thinking about them during my daily activities. I felt fear, excitement, satisfaction and sorrow, it truly was a flurry of emotions. I look forward to reading Limited Wish, and then Dispel Illusion that comes out later this year.