My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I really enjoyed this fantasy from the author of the Temeraire series. It's fresh, well-crafted, has great world-building, features a non-Western European setting and best of all, passes the Bechdel test. There are women in it who talk about stuff, and do stuff, that has nothing to do with men (as in relationships with men). That is so refreshing!
Kudos to Novik for striking out in a new direction rather than resting on her deserved laurels for her previous series. I'll be eagerly awaiting her next novel, no matter where it's set.
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