Sefia lives her life on the run. After her father is viciously murdered, she flees to the forest with her aunt Nin, the only person left she can trust. They survive in the wilderness together, hunting and stealing what they need, forever looking over their shoulders for new threats. But when Nin is kidnapped, Sefia is suddenly on her own, with no way to know who’s taken Nin or where she is. Her only clue is a strange rectangular object that once belonged to her father left behind, something she comes to realize is a book.
Though reading is unheard of in Sefia’s world, she slowly learns, unearthing the book’s closely guarded secrets, which may be the key to Nin’s disappearance and discovering what really happened the day her father was killed. With no time to lose, and the unexpected help of swashbuckling pirates and an enigmatic stranger, Sefia sets out on a dangerous journey to rescue her aunt, using the book as her guide. In the end, she discovers what the book had been trying to tell her all along: Nothing is as it seems, and the end of her story is only the beginning.
My Rating:4/5 stars
The reader has one of the most interesting fantasy novels I’ve ever read. It’s basically set in a world where very few people read and even know that reading is a thing, In mainstream society, there is no written word and they communicate through images. Our main character Sefia has been on the run her entire life and is possession of a book. She has no idea what it is or what to do it but she knows it’s somehow the connection to her parent’s death.
To me a world without books is unfathomable, and I’m sure it’s the same for a lot of you. I really loved how the author incorporated the concept of reading in such an unique and interesting fashion.It was interesting to see a world that doesn’t rely on the written word, where reading has a kind of mystery surrounding it. While it was a little hard for me to get into at first-but thats just a personal issue because I don’t read that much fantasy-once I did, I was so enraptured. I especially enjoyed the little side stories alongside it, and found it interesting to get other perspectives. I also really loved the pirate aspect which was surprising since I’m not the hugest fan of pirates but I really liked the way it was incorporated. One thing that I loved so much about the book was the cool things that were added throughout the book,pages that appeared to have fingerprints smudges,blacked out sentences,blood stains, really making it a cool interactive experience making me feel as though I was in the world as well.
One of the things I loved about this book is that the main character Sefia is a PoC which is just so wonderful to see in Fantasy and really needs to occur more frequently.Sefia is a really great and strong character and while she does have a very rough exterior and kind of cold at first, she also has a great heart and I just really loved her.I also loved her resourceful and how quickly and easily she was able to grasp the written word.Some of my other favorite characters were Archer and basically all the pirates. Archer is this boy that Sefia rescues and while he doesn’t talk for most of the book, I really loved his character and seeing his backstory and I’m really looking forward to see his personality develop in the later novels. Finally the pirates were so great and I loved all of them and they were just really great characters and I really hope they show up in the next book because I loved to see the friendship between Sefia,Archer and them develop.