Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Let's Talk: "The Demon Race" by Alexandria Warwick

Title: The Demon Race
Author: Alexandria Warwick
Genre: YA Fantasy
Page Length: 372 pages
Publication Date: September 18, 2018
Date Started: September 14, 2018
Date Finished: September 17, 2018
Rating: 3.75/5 stars

*I was provided a free advance copy of this book in exchange for an honest review*

Okay so this book was pretty great. I thoroughly enjoyed my time in this story. I thought that, especially for a debut, the writing style was incredible. Alexandria really knows how to create art out of words. Her imagery is fantastic and her writing poetic.

As for the actual story, it was interesting and fast-paced. I was never particularly bored and I thought that there were a lot of great high-action scenes. The slower scenes in between any fighting or fleeing were interesting in their own way as they provided backstory, character development, and other fantastic aspects to this novel. It was also pretty graphic at some parts in terms of the gore and the darker parts of the story. I think this added it's own level of depth to it that made it that much more interesting for me.

I will say that for me this felt like a largely character-driven story, which is a good thing because I'm constantly annoyed when books focus more on plot than on character. I really enjoyed reading about Namali and Sameen's journey--which is what I saw this book as. For as long as the race was, it didn't really feel like a race except for the beginning and the end. It felt more like a journey. But it was a great journey to see the two characters grow independently and as friends. I was more invested in their story than I though and I found myself blinking back tears numerous times throughout the book.

I would have liked to see a little more of the outside world, though. The most we get is few setting details when the characters are in a city. I'd love to have learned more about the world, culture, etc outside of the setting and whatever myths are told about The Demon King. I can only imagine how beautiful and also cruel this world would be if we'd been told more about it.

The one thing that is very well described in this entire book, though, is the oppression against women in this world. It's hard to read about but I also love how this book tackled it in the instance of Sameen and Namali. There's one scene where Sameen is insistent that he isn't an oppressor, but Namali explains to him how there are different ways of oppression and that he is, in fact, part of the systematic oppression that keeps so many women and girls silent. Instead of getting angry or lashing out, Sameen asks how he can do better. I wish more people in our world would act like that instead of getting anger and defensive.

Overall, I thought this was a good book and I'm happy to have read it. I'm so grateful to Alexandria for letting me experience this story and these characters. I'm so excited for the rest of you to experience them too!

Thanks for reading! Links to purchase or more information can be found at the top of the page under the link to Alexandria Warwick's guest post :)

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