I was actually in a pretty good place to enjoy this one because I just read (and enjoyed) another West African-inspired fantasy called DJELIYA, which defined a lot of the West African terms and mythology in the back (like djeli, called "jali" in here, which are kind of like maguses/bards). Also, I was obsessed with that cover, which has to be one of my top five favorite fantasy cover releases this year.
Sadly, though, I just really wasn't into the book. I'm very particular about fantasy and romance, and if a book doesn't fit what I'm into, it just doesn't work. Normally I DNF after 50 pages but I really tried to give SON OF THE STORM a fair shot. I liked the beginning and the world-building, but the characters all fell kind of flat for me. It reminded me of Joe Abercrombie's work in that the characters feel wooden and most of the focus is on grimdark world-building and the characters just kind of propel the story along but there isn't a lot of emotion in the story-telling. Some people really like that narrative style, but I like intensely character-focused stories, like QUEEN OF THE CONQUERED or POISON STUDY or THE GHOST BRIDE.
This is definitely a "your mileage may vary" situation. I didn't personally like this story and found it too dry but the world-building is cool and I think if you enjoy Joe Abercrombie (I don't, particularly), you will like this, too.
Thanks to the publisher for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review!
2 to 2.5 out of 5 stars
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