Mariko has always known that being a woman means she's not in control of her own fate. But Mariko is the daughter of a prominent samurai and a cunning alchemist in her own right, and she refuses to be ignored. When she is ambushed by a group of bandits known as the Black Clan enroute to a political marriage to Minamoto Raiden - the emperor's son - Mariko realises she has two choices: she can wait to be rescued...or she can take matters into her own hands, hunt down the clan and find the person who wants her dead.Disguising herself as a peasant boy, Mariko infiltrates the Black Clan's hideout and befriends their leader, the rebel ronin Ranmaru, and his second-in-command, Okami. Ranmaru and Okami warm to Mariko, impressed by her intellect and ingenuity. But as Mariko gets closer to the Black Clan, she uncovers a dark history of secrets that will force her to question everything she's ever known.
~I was sent a copy from the publishers-all opinions are my own~
I give it-5/5
My review - THIS BOOK WAS EVERYTHING I NEEDED IN LIFE. It was so wonderful and beautiful and it left me needing more.
There will be more, right? I'm so ready for the next one. I miss the characters, my heart is broken and I just can't cope with how wonderful this book was and I need to re-read it again. Everyone needs to read this wonderful fantasy book. It is gripping from the beginning and I didn't put it down once. As soon as I started I felt like I was transported to that world and I was just following along for the story. The plot will have you gripping the pages, wanting to know what happens but also, wanting to take your time with the book.
Renee is a fantastic writer. She writes so beautifully and in a way you just want to carry on reading, even after it's finished. I can't wait to pick up her other books as this is one of my favourite books of the year. So wonderful and mesmerizing and plus, it's a Mulan kind of retelling and if you don't like Mulan just leave.
In this book we meet Mariko. She knows that she has no control and because of that she is to be wed to the emperor's son. On the way, she is ambushed and all the people with her are killed. She hides and comes up with a plan. Taking her own life into her hands she decides to disguise herself as a boy to get her way into the Black Clan and find out why they wanted her dead. There she befriends Ranmaru, the leader and Okami who is second in command. Mariko is really smart and wants to learn how to fight. But, with Okami teaching her, he starts to like Mariko, or who she is pretending to be. But, being with the Black Clan, she starts to learn things, things that she never knew about before and she starts to question everything she's ever known.
With her brother on her tracks, will things end in a battle? Will Mariko choose the right side to fight for?
This book is just so brilliant and I loved every second of it. I love all the characters and how they grow in this book. How they are with each other and I can't wait to read more to see what happens. The ending left me needing more. I miss these characters already and I need everyone to read it so we can discuss what happened.
My favourite book of 2017 so far and you all need to get it when its out and you will love it just as much as I did.