Hello and welcome to my stop for Six Crimson Cranes by Elizabeth Lim book tour! A huge thanks to Tbr and beyond tours for the chance to be part of it!
Shiori, the only princess of Kiata, has a secret. Forbidden magic runs through her veins. Normally she conceals it well, but on the morning of her betrothal ceremony, Shiori loses control. At first, her mistake seems like a stroke of luck, forestalling the wedding she never wanted, but it also catches the attention of Raikama, her stepmother.
Raikama has dark magic of her own, and she banishes the young princess, turning her brothers into cranes, and warning Shiori that she must speak of it to no one: for with every word that escapes her lips, one of her brothers will die.
Penniless, voiceless, and alone, Shiori searches for her brothers, and, on her journey, uncovers a conspiracy to overtake the throne—a conspiracy more twisted and deceitful, more cunning and complex, than even Raikama’s betrayal. Only Shiori can set the kingdom to rights, but to do so she must place her trust in the very boy she fought so hard not to marry. And she must embrace the magic she’s been taught all her life to contain—no matter what it costs her.
Thank you so much, NetGalley, Random House Children’s and Knopf Books For Young Readers, for the chance to read and review this book!
Shiori’anma is the only princess of Kiata and she has a secret. She has magic, forbidden magic. Usually she’s able to conceal it, but on the morning of her betrothal cerimony, she loses control and the wedding, a wedding she never wanted, is forestalled. Her mistake also catches her stepmother’s, Raikama, attention. The woman is a powerful sorceress and she banishes the young princess, turning her six brothers in cranes and warning Shiori that she mustn’t speak, for with every word she says, one of her brother will die.
Alone, penniless, voiceless, Shiori is determined to find her brothers and break the curse and in her journey she discovers a dark conspiracy to seize the throne. In order to prevent it, she places her trust in her magic paper crane, Kiki, a mercurial dragon, in her brothers and in the same young man she didn’t want to marry. That also means facing and embracing her own powers. Six crimson cranes is a spellbinding fairytale, narrated by Shiori’s POV, full of intriguing characters, thrilling story and fascinating worldbuilding, where reality, gods and myths are woven together.
Drawing inspirations from “The wild swans” and East Asian folklore, this fantasy is original and really well written, focusing on Shiori’s journey, both physical and psychological in finding her brothers, breaking the curse and saving her kingdom. Shiori is a very complex main character and the reader follows her growth, from a young and careless princess, protected and loved by her father and brothers, to a strong and able woman, willing to do anything in order to protect her family and those she loves.
Her journey is intense and Shiori finds herself without money, voice and family, but she’s brilliant and resourceful and won’t let anything stop her. If the main character captures the reader’s attention right away, the side characters are also wonderfully written. Shiori’s brothers, Takkan, Seryu, Megari, Raikama, Zairena, Hasege add layers to the story, each of them complex and with their own stories and motives and intricacies.
I really enjoyed reading Shiori’s relationship with her brothers, because it’s wonderfully strong and moving. Also reading how slowly she gets along with, love and trust Seryu, Megari and Takkan, even though very different from one other, was so lovely to read. The worldbuilding is interesting and fascinating, with talking dragons, princes turned into cranes, gods and magic, demons and curses and in this world Shiori faces adventures after adventures, finding, in her quest, also romance and love.
The storytelling is absolutely brilliant and I devoured this book, because I couldn’t stop reading it and it was so compelling. Shiori, Seryu and Takkan are awesome characters and I can’t wait to know more about this world.
Here’s the tour schedule! Go check the others’ amazing posts!