Before the massacre at Nariin, Enebish was one of the greatest warriors in the Sky King’s Imperial Army: a rare and dangerous Night Spinner, blessed with the ability to control the threads of darkness. Now, she is known as Enebish the Destroyer―a monster and murderer, banished to a monastery for losing control of her power and annihilating a merchant caravan.
Guilt stricken and scarred, Enebish tries to be grateful for her sanctuary, until her adoptive sister, Imperial Army commander Ghoa, returns from the war front with a tantalizing offer. If Enebish can capture the notorious criminal, Temujin, whose band of rebels has been seizing army supply wagons, not only will her crimes be pardoned, she will be reinstated as a warrior.
Enebish eagerly accepts. But as she hunts Temujin across the tundra, she discovers the tides of war have shifted, and the supplies he’s stealing are the only thing keeping thousands of shepherds from starving. Torn between duty and conscience, Enebish must decide whether to put her trust in the charismatic rebel or her beloved sister. No matter who she chooses, an even greater enemy is advancing, ready to bring the empire to its knees.
by Addie Thorley
Published by: Page Street Kids
Publication Date: February 11, 2020
Formats: Hardcover, kindle/ebook
Genre: YA Fantasy [Retelling]
Gender swapped magical retelling of ‘The Hunchback’ that’s all you really need to know to dive into this amazing book.
Oh, and it’s set on a frozen tundra.
Forgot to add that extra amazing tidbit.
Guys, magic, frozen setting, gender-swapped roles of the Hunchback, GUYS.
THIS IS THE BOOK I’VE BEEN WAITING FOR.
Heartache, new lands, people struggling and needing a voice to watch out for them, deceit, I just could say things like this for the whole review instead of explaining anything. This is how excited I am.
Enebish is a brilliantly written MC and the prose is so smoothly laid out that reading this book takes almost no time at all. Thorley drops you into a beautiful world full of conflict, pain, and magic.
‘En’ is locked up, for the safety of herself but also for the innocent civilians, why? Because once upon a time she was a great Kalima warrior, Enebish the Warrior and then one moment change that and she became known as Enebish Destroyer, someone who slew instead of protecting the people of the kingdom.
One mistake, one slip of control of her magic and that’s all it took. Destined for death, she was instead spared and given a life of exile as luckily for En her adopted older sister saved her from death and now she leads a life quite different from that of a warrior, not just because of her sentencing but because she came out with injuries that changed her body form that of a warrior.
Not to mention in her life of exile she has two bright shining stars still, Serik her best friend, forced into a life as a monk, and the eagles she trains, Orbai in particular.
En has people she loves, not just those close to her but the people their Sky King is supposed to protect and she realizes she cannot hide away if they’re in danger but does that mean working with her Sister’s nemesis to save them?
Not to mention, it seems to be her sister’s fault she’s been put in this position in the first place, used to lure out the said nemesis, but as she’s let out into the world again what Enebish is greeted with is all too horrifying. People going unfed and unprotected, conditions are so bad that there’s no way the Sky King or her sister have realized it because otherwise, they would help. Wouldn’t they?
We watch Enebish as she’s something stripped down from her warrior form, still En, but scared, humble and always willing to bend the knee for her sister, but watching the people in pain, something flares back into life for her. If only the people didn’t hate and fear her, forcing her to hide herself.
But we watch her rise into something amazing, and through all the heartbreak and deceit, Enebish finds herself once more, but is she still the same woman inside from before her fall from grace?
Be prepared to gasp out loud and shriek while reading, some twists are easy to see, others are not. I loved this so much I could go on forever but really I just hope you’ll read this and give it a chance.
I don’t want to give too much away but this book was amazing and sure to be one of my favorite releases of 2020. It comes out on February 11th!
Thank you to the publishers and NetGalley for an eARC in exchange for my honest opinion.