Children of Earth and Sky was at the top of my wish list earlier this year. After getting it, however, I just felt no desire to read it right away. So it took me longer than I expected to read this, and I really wish that I had read it sooner. Despite all of the political machinations, I really love this book. It’s very character driven, which I had a bit of a hard time getting used to. Still, it made for a great read.
What I Liked
The characters: Although it was an overwhelming task to keep up with all the important names, I couldn’t stop reading to see how they all connected. Danica, a girl set on vengeance, was my favorite character. I liked what she set out for, and she happens to be a badass, so that helped in my liking of her. Aside from Danica, we also have a slew of others: Marin, Pero, Leonara, just to name a few. Each of these characters have a purpose. There are spies, lies, sex, and everything in between. Kay did a great job with character development, without overdoing it. He gives you just enough to get a feel for who is narrating and why that person is in the position of this band of misfits.
The world building: This book is not so much fantasy as it is alternate European history. Even with the long descriptive passages, I was able to visualize most of what was presented to me. As a lover of historical movies, it wasn’t hard to do. The author paints vivid pictures of Senjan, Seressa, Obravic and the open sea. If you are keen on world building (which you should be if you enjoy alternative historical novels) then this book will hit all of your buttons.
Action: It takes some time to get to the meat of this story, but I didn’t mind it in the least. After I got passed the first 150 or so pages, I sailed right through. There are battles and killings (some unnecessary IMO), political intrigue, a crazy emperor, rogues, raiders, and heroes. It’s very adventure-y.
What I Didn’t Like
The slow start didn’t really bother me once I got to certain points, but it definitely influenced my rating. I’m usually a fan of third person POV, but I don’t think it helped me here. It wasn’t confusing, but there were moments when my head was spinning a little. I had to keep up with a lot of information.
Yes. I think fans of George R.R. Martin’s Game of Thrones, and even Leigh Bardugo’s Six of Crows will enjoy this book. It’s very character driven, has amazing world building, and there’s some action and adventure thrown in.