Bethan’s Book Of The Month
Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
Recommended to me by a friend and fellow literature student, I bought both Children of Blood and Bone and the sequel Children of Virtue and Vengeance not entirely sure what to expect. The Legacy of Orïsha series is a YA story of magic and power with a healthy sprinkling of romance and adventure. At first glance this description doesn’t seem overly exciting or revolutionary, but Adeyemi’s beautiful storytelling and writing brings the world of Orïsha to life. And what really grabbed me was the story of race and racism. Many YA dystopian stories are allegories for race, such as The Hunger Games trilogy. However, Adeyemi doesn’t shy away from her intentions in her language, character descriptions, and even her poignant author’s note.
*Spoilers Start Here*
The story follows the main character Zélie, a young dîviner (a maji without her powers) as she travels to find a way to bring magic back to Orïsha. Her companions are her older brother Tzain and Princess of Orïsha, Amari, and at times Prince of Orïsha, Inan. Zélie must overcome her struggles with impulsivity, mistrust, and friendship.
Zélie is truly one of the most powerful female characters I have read in a YA story, and although she has her faults, and makes many mistakes throughout the story, ultimately she is always learning and as readers we still know she has her heart in the right place. Amari is an equally amazing character who develops from being a meek princess to a powerful Lionaire. Her story surrounds how she learns to reject her family’s morals and upbringing to fight for what is right.
Even if this isn’t particularly your style of book, I would still recommend giving this a read as the actual writing and world building is truly art. The way she describes the towns, market places and even the demolished temples that they visit is so amazing and I truly want to visit!
The only part of the story I didn’t enjoy so much was the romance between Inan and Zélie, partially I think because I was unsure of the ages of each character. Although I can be a sucker for the ‘enemies-to-lovers’ trope, this was a little too ‘potential-killer to lover’ for me to be totally onboard. However, this did not- in any way- ruin my reading experience and I definitely still enjoyed the characterisation throughout the book.
Overall Star Rating – 5/5