Thursday, July 26, 2018

Review of The Tiger's Daughter by K. Arsenault Rivera

Read for: Tome Topple Readathon/ Buddy Read/ Recent Purchase and Highly Recommended

Synopsis: "Even gods can be slain….

The Hokkaran empire has conquered every land within their bold reach―but failed to notice a lurking darkness festering within the people. Now, their border walls begin to crumble, and villages fall to demons swarming out of the forests.

Away on the silver steppes, the remaining tribes of nomadic Qorin retreat and protect their own, having bartered a treaty with the empire, exchanging inheritance through the dynasties. It is up to two young warriors, raised together across borders since their prophesied birth, to save the world from the encroaching demons.

This is the story of an infamous Qorin warrior, Barsalayaa Shefali, a spoiled divine warrior empress, O-Shizuka, and a power that can reach through time and space to save a land from a truly insidious evil."

My Review: I finally picked this book up after hearing Sam from Thoughts on Tomes on Youtube mention it as one of her favorite books repeatedly. The cover is stunning and the synopsis was really intriguing, I found the setting (and Mongolian inspiration) to be really intriguing. I buddy read this book with someone from Instagram for the Tome Topple challenge and I am glad I had someone to discuss the book with as I read it! The book is written in a really beautiful almost lyrical way, the words just flow together like music. 

Admittedly, I had a few concerns when starting the book, first being the various names each characters is called, and this turned out to be a problem as they gain more names as the story continues and some of them are extremely similar (I highly recommend listening to an audio book to hear the pronunciations while reading, at least for a little while). Then next concern I had was that the beautiful writing would be the focus and we would loose the story or possibly even the character connections due to it; that ended up not being a problem, the beautiful writing only added to the story and heightened the intensity of the relationship between Shizuka and Shefali. In fact, the love between these two characters is so strong that it made my heartache and brought me to tears a few times. 

Even though I was aware that this is a fantasy, I honestly wasn't expecting the magical elements or the demons. While it did add a little to the story and it does become a major plot point, I like that the focus remained on their relationship and own personal character development. 

While the story is supposedly written as letters and present day moments, in truth it is one long letter to the point of being a book with brief moments of present day reactions of the one reading it. I was honestly expecting more of letters back and forth throughout the story but it is just one letter from one character and the other character reading and reacting. With that said I really think that it word well for this story. It is not often that a second person narration works in books and thankfully Rivera really pulled it off in this one. 

This book may not be for every reader, and not even for all fantasy fans. It does start off a little slow but it does pick up pace as it goes, but for an over 500 page book it can be daunting. I am beyond excited for the next book and have already pre-ordered it!

My Rating: I absolutely fell in love with Shizuka and Shefali and especially their love story. There were a few hiccups but all in all this was a beautiful story that really pulled me in and held me throughout.  I give it a rating of Four Paws and a Stump Wag!

There were so many beautiful quotes in this story and I have been trying to get better about noting them so I thought I would share one with you. 

"I wept, Shizuka. I wept for you every night. So what if I'd lost an eye? An eye is not an essential thing. I was born with two; I can live with one.
But a person can have only one soul, and you are mine. Without you near me . . .
I cannot put words to the pain."

While I know this may not be the book for everyone, I hope you will give it a chance because the love they have is just so beautiful!


  1. This sounds like it’s written so weird! I’m glad you liked it. I’d have to be in the mood to try it.

    1. It is definitely a different writing style than I am used to but it worked out beautifully. I would suggest being in the mood for it, maybe a fall day when you can really settle into the story.