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Huntress by Malinda Lo
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Huntress (edition 2011)

by Malinda Lo

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3613230,087 (3.76)19
Member:BookishBrunette
Title:Huntress
Authors:Malinda Lo
Info:Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (2011), Hardcover, 384 pages
Collections:Your library, To read
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Huntress by Malinda Lo

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» See also 19 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 32 (next | show all)
I really enjoyed this book. It has a lot of great elements for a romantic adventure. The plot moves along at a fast pace, I really cared about the characters, and everything seemed to fit together. Highly recommended. ( )
  nnschiller | Sep 18, 2014 |
Ash had a very smoky original fairy tale feel to it, Huntress has a different sort of clarity to it that is surprisingly accessible. I really enjoyed the read. ( )
  raselyem7 | Aug 30, 2014 |
Huntress excels at demonstrating how a lesbian affair doesn't have to be tawdry and how everything can work out well. What it doesn't excel at, however, is pacing. The first part was very well done...and then she rushed through the end. The climax, in particular, was lacking. Sad to say, after I finished reading it, I had no concern for what happened to the characters after the book was done.

Malinda Lo might not have been able to relinquish Kaede and Taisin...but I was. ( )
  liveshipvivacia | Apr 26, 2014 |
It was an amazingly written book. Much better paced than her first book, Ash. It flowed from the page and pulled me into the story, despite the fact that I'm not generally a fan of Fantasy.

The novel is the story of a human kingdom that has not seen summer, even as the midsummer day approaches. The Fairy Queen that lives to the North of the human kingdom in the woods sorta summons the humans to her kingdom, everyone assumes it's so that the problem with the seasons can be fixed. And so the human King's son as well as two girls from the Sage Academy and some guards set out on the journey to the Queen to hopefully save the world.

It's your basic coming of age story and journey story as well. But what makes the book impressive is the character interactions. They're very real, and at times hilarious.

All in all, it was a typical Fantasy YA book, although maybe it wasn't totally typical since there wasn't a vampire in sight (phew!) A must read, even for adults. ( )
  DanieXJ | Mar 24, 2014 |
At first, I was all set to say Huntress was all-around a better book than Ash. It didn't take half the book for all the main characters to show up, and the various monsters the group encountered added a nice creepiness factor. I thought the bit with the “baby” was particularly horrific. Lo was also not shy about killing people off. I was pretty sure certain characters were probably not going to survive the whole book, but I wasn't absolutely sure, and that was enough to keep me on the edge of my seat, waiting to see their fates.

Although there are definitely many good things to say about this book, I took a brief break when I was maybe two thirds of the way through it, and that break got me to thinking about a few things. One of those things was Kaede and Taisin's relationship. While I liked that, this time, Lo allowed readers to see things from both characters' points of view (in Ash, everything was from Ash's perspective), Kaede and Taisin spent a huge portion of the book not really talking to each other. Neither of them knew each other very well, and Taisin wanted, as much as possible, to avoid becoming closer to Kaede, because she knew that falling in love with Kaede would put her dream of becoming a sage in danger.

There were nice moments when Kaede caught Taisin blushing and started to wonder (correctly) if Taisin was blushing over her, and Taisin's strong feelings made sense to me because I figured they were at least partly inspired by the emotions she experienced during her vision of Kaede leaving the group. Still, I would have liked to see the two of them talking to each other more often. I think Kaede might have talked more with Shae, one of the guards in the group, than she did with Taisin. To my mind, it doesn't really count that Taisin was in the same room, because she wasn't participating in the conversations.

Another thing I didn't quite like about this book was its pacing. The group spends a long time on its journey to the Fairy Queen. Things happen while they're on this journey, but those things usually just boil down to “dangerous monsters appear, and sometimes characters die.” About two thirds of the way through the book, the group finally meets the Fairy Queen, who explains what they must do and why. Then what's left of the group goes on a shorter journey to deal with what appears to be the book's villain – this happened so near the end of the book that the addition of yet another task that needed to be completed for everything to go back to normal took me by surprise.

Had the initial journey to the Fairy Queen not taken up so much of the book, maybe there would have been time for a few other things. The book ends on a relatively upbeat note (unless you read this for the romance between Kaede and Taisin – then the ending may upset you), but I would have liked the story to go on just a bit longer, so I could see how each of the characters would fare on their chosen paths.

Considering that most of my review noted the things I didn't like about Huntress, you may not believe me when I say I really did like it overall. So far, Lo is turning out to be one of those authors I simultaneously enjoy and am frustrated by. I like the world she has created, and I mostly like her characters, so I plan on reading her next book. I'm crossing my fingers that it will be set in the same world as Ash and Huntress and will take place not long after Huntress.

I have a feeling that the journey helped Kaede mature some, and it would be wonderful to see her face her father now, particularly since I suspect that Kaede will be the first King's Huntress. I can see all kinds of fun political growing pains in a story like that. I also admit to hoping that Kaede ends up in a political marriage that works out happily (in Huntress it's stated that same-sex political marriages are rare, but that doesn't mean they're impossible). I think it would be interesting to read about Kaede figuring out what the position of King's Huntress should be like, while at the same time feeling her way around a marriage with someone she doesn't know at first but eventually learns to love.

(Original review, with read-alikes, posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.) ( )
  Familiar_Diversions | Sep 24, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 32 (next | show all)
Two teenage girls—Taisin, a sage who has visions, and Kaede, a brave fighter from a powerful family—must travel to see the Fairy Queen to try and save their land. A persistent winter has settled over their kingdom for two years, halting not only trade and harvests but the natural course of life itself, and threatening the survival of Taisin and Kaede's fellow citizens. The journey to the city of Taninli, home of the Fairy Queen, is treacherous, and along the way Taisin, Kaede, and their travel companions face many dangers and tests of their abilities, not least of which are Taisin and Kaede's growing feelings for each other. Lo's storytelling and prose are masterful, and her protagonists will fascinate, particularly Taisin and her relationship to death and its accompanying rituals, her visions, and the way she can occupy another's mind. As with Ash, Lo's characters are emotionally reserved, which makes the unfolding of romance between Kaede and Taisin all the more satisfying. Fans of Garth Nix's Abhorsen trilogy will love this. Ages 15–up. (Apr.)
 
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To Amy Lovell
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"Clouds and thunder arise: / The sage brings order. / Those who chase deer without a hunter / Lose their way in the Wood." / -Book of Changes

She saw a beach made of ice, and she felt her heart breaking.
The ground where she stood was frozen white, but twenty feet away, cold blue ocean lapped at the jagged shore. Someone there was climbing into a rowboat, and she knew that she loved this person. She was certain of it in the same way that one is instantly aware of the taste of sweetness in a drop of honey. But she was afraid for this person's life, and the fear raised a cold sweat on her skin and caused a sick lurch in her stomach, as though she were on a ship during a violent storm.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 031604007X, Hardcover)

Nature is out of balance in the human world. The sun hasn't shone in years, and crops are failing. Worse yet, strange and hostile creatures have begun to appear. The people's survival hangs in the balance.

To solve the crisis, the oracle stones are cast, and Kaede and Taisin, two seventeen-year-old girls, are picked to go on a dangerous and unheard-of journey to Tanlili, the city of the Fairy Queen. Taisin is a sage, thrumming with magic, and Kaede is of the earth, without a speck of the otherworldly. And yet the two girls' destinies are drawn together during the mission. As members of their party succumb to unearthly attacks and fairy tricks, the two come to rely on each other and even begin to fall in love. But the Kingdom needs only one huntress to save it, and what it takes could tear Kaede and Taisin apart forever.

The exciting adventure prequel to Malinda Lo's highly acclaimed novel Ash is overflowing with lush Chinese influences and details inspired by the I Ching, and is filled with action and romance.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 14:04:59 -0400)

Seventeen-year-olds Kaede and Taisin are called to go on a dangerous and unprecedented journey to Tanlili, the city of the Fairy Queen, in an effort to restore the balance of nature in the human world.

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