Descendant Of The Crane
by Joan He
Tyrants cut out hearts. Rulers sacrifice their own
Princess Hesina of Yan has always been eager to shirk the responsibilities of the crown, but when her beloved father is murdered, she’s thrust into power, suddenly the queen of an unstable kingdom. Determined to find her father’s killer, Hesina does something desperate: she engages the aid of a soothsayer – a treasonous act, punishable by death… because in Yan, magic was outlawed centuries ago.
Using the information illicitly provided by the sooth, and uncertain if she can trust even her family, Hesina turns to Akira – a brilliant and alluring investigator who’s also a convicted criminal with secrets of his own. With the future of her kingdom at stake, can Hesina find justice for her father? Or will the cost be too high?
In this shimmering Chinese-inspired fantasy, debut author Joan He introduces a determined and vulnerable young heroine struggling to do right in a world brimming with deception.
Review:Let me preface by saying I wrote this review almost immediately after finishing the novel, and I’m still in as much awe a week later as I was while reading it. Pure magic in the words and the world.
I had the privilege of reading an eARC of this novel. I received a copy on the 1st of Jan (what an awesome New Year present!) and I was done by 2pm on the 4th of Jan.
That should tell you a lot. But if you need further elaboration, I could not put it down. The world building is immense and lush and the details are too numerous and carefully put together to fully elaborate. Every character comes across as three-dimensional and flawed and utterly human. The story sucks you in until you are so immersed, you don’t know heads or tails.
And the twists and turns knock you down but also leave you just enough to pull yourself back up again. The breadcrumbs are there, giving you just enough information to have a sense that something is coming, but every time Hesina is taken aback? So are you.
I am at a loss of words, honestly. I’m still trying to catch my breath after that roller-coaster ride, but I feel as if I have to take my thoughts down NOW or I won’t get them right.
Each character in this story has so much to offer. I don’t want to spoil anything for anyone, so I’m trying to refrain from saying too much, because this is one for the ages. Honestly, the sequel will kill me, if the anticipation does not.