Review: The Raven Tower by Ann Leckie


The Raven Tower by Ann Leckie // VBC ReviewThe Raven Tower
Ann Leckie
Published: Feb. 26, 2019 (Orbit)
Purchase at: Amazon or Book Depository
Review Source: Copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review

Reviewed by: Amy 

Rating (out of 5): 4.5 stars

Here is a story I have heard: Upon word of his father’s impending death Mawat rides home for Iraden to take his place as heir to the Raven’s Lease. As Lease, Mawat’s father will be called upon to sacrifice himself in the name of the Raven God of Vastai, to give the God its continuing power so Iraden can continue to reap the benefits of the God’s protection.

When he arrives, Mawat discovers, much to his shock, that his uncle has already taken up the benc—a feat that should be impossible. Mawat enlists the help of his aide Eolo to piece together what, exactly, is going on and find out what happened to his father. However, there are other things at play in Iraden, such as the Raven’s weakening hold on its power. Things that have been in motion for a long time.

Something is definitely rotten in the state of Iraden. There. Will. Be. A. Reckoning.

The Raven Tower has the rare distinction, for me, of being told in second person point of view. Meaning you, the reader, are somewhat represented by the aide Eolo as this omniscient presence narrates the goings on in Irade—speaking directly to Eolo—as if looking down on events from above. The story moves back and forth between this action and the history of how things came to be this way in Vasti—as relayed by said presence. It’s an extremely interesting, and I’d say really well done, choice that Ann Leckie made in telling the story this way. It was also a little difficult, at times, for me to stay with the story. The shift from one story thread to another would often pull me out of the rhythm of the story. As we learn, there is power in words, and I’d find myself having to go back and re-read to make sure I took in every sentence and mention.

Once I was fully engrossed in the story, I really enjoyed seeing how everything (the present happenings and the history) fit together, eventually, very unassumingly, leading us to an ending that packed quite the punch.

I found the relationship between humans and the gods to be very interesting especially in the way that we see the gods vulnerabilities. Such as the power of words. Creating and destroying. There’s a give and take of how power is developed and held, how it’s released and utilized. The humans and gods play off one another (and oftentimes themselves) and, at times, you lose sight of who’s controlling whom. That is, until the pieces all fall into place by the end.

This is the first book I’ve read by Ann Leckie, and coincidentally it’s her first fantasy book as she’s already notable for her science fiction. Ann Leckie certainly has a way with crafting a story presenting things in a way that makes you think outside the box. I highly recommend The Raven Tower. Even if you need to put it down or start over again, it pays off in the end.

Sexual content: None

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Powered by WordPress | Designed by Elegant Themes
Malcare WordPress Security