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A Daughter of No Nation by A.M. Dellamonica
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A Daughter of No Nation

by A.M. Dellamonica

Other authors: Cynthia Sheppard (Cover artist)

Series: Hidden Sea Tales (2)

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I enjoyed this installment very much! Just the right amount of science, intrigue, romance, politics, psychology, ethical dilemmas...a whole lot pumped into one story. Much like life...only in a totally unique setting. Looking forward to the ending later this year! ( )
  lissabeth21 | Oct 3, 2017 |
Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy.
allthingsuf.com

Bringing swashbuckling, fantasy, and police procedurals together into a perfect adventure on the high seas, A DAUGHTER OF NO NATION is even better than it's predecessor. For anyone who enjoys a touch of real world risk in their magic, this is an adventure you won't want to miss.

Sophie's exploration of Stormwrack is the perfect balance of science, magic, and adventure. She is a scientist dropped into magical circumstances, and while she's well educated and dogged, her story is accessible in a way few "born special" urban fantasy heroines can be. From the first chapter where we see Sophie training and preparing, everyone in this story feels believably flawed and human. Sophie has to rely on her wits and "mundane" skills, making this magical setting feel utterly real and really dangerous.

It was a delight watching Sophie balance her skepticism about alchemy and primitive sciences against the very real evidence of magic in Stormwrack. Her own perspective means the reader can be surprised as well, finding unexpected truths hidden amongst the superstitions and traditions. A DAUGHTER OF NO NATION was a joyful adventure and I can't wait to set sail with Sophie again.

Sexual Content: Kissing, discussions about sex and rape. ( )
  Capnrandm | Jul 2, 2016 |
I won an ARC from Tor and this is an honest review.
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I will try not to be spoilery, and this really is an honest review, because when I won the ARC, I had no idea who A.M. Dellamonica was, was shocked I'd actually won anything at all, (because I never win things), and had entered because I thought the book looked interesting. I had _heard_ of A.M. Dellamonica before, so her name was familiar. Since this was the second book, after I won this book, I got a copy of the first book, and by the time I'd finished "Child of the Hidden Sea," this was the most wanted book I'd won that I hadn't known I wanted. Maybe that's the trick to winning books, to not know how much you really want them in the first place.

I don't know if I can adequately express how much in love with Stormwrack, the alternate universe Dellamonica has created, I am. Or how much I adore the characters, and the sibling relationships and their interactions, the magnificence of the worldbuilding, the wonderful dialogue... I love Sophie as the main character because she is so smart, yet she is just as fallible to making human mistakes as anyone, and blurts out inappropriate things and puts her foot in her mouth--she is just so _irrepressible_. Sometimes to her own detriment, and those around her.

This continuation of her adventures in Stormwrack as a result of what happens in "Child of the Hidden Sea" are just as enthralling as the first. The situation is more confusing for Sophie as she tries to sort out her feelings for her father as she visits his home country and finds out things that have been deliberately kept from her--things that would have changed her mind about visiting, thus voiding the contract she agreed on to help free her mother.

The layers of family are handled so well--her family on Erstwhile vs. her family on Stormwrack, and how she feels so intertwined with both. The differences between what separates a child from an adult, contrasted with the age at which heavy responsibilities are taken on, is fascinating.

The continuing dance between Sophie and Parrish is so much fun. And how Varena handles things.

I admire so much the way Dellamonica writes, the way she comes up with the subplots that weave together into such an amazing story. Turtles, automatons, throttle vines, warring island nations, pirates, all interconnected in such a brilliant way. And the cat. I love the cat. And Tonio. Parrish's mother. There are just so many things--_Nightjar_, the belief in predestination and all the "sciences" that Sophie finds shocking and amazing and somewhat horrifying, the discoveries she and Bram start to make. It just leaves me breathless. I felt like crying when the book was over, because I just didn't want it to end.

I feel like winning this book is so much more than just winning a book. I've found about a new author, a new world that I can't stop thinking about, and it's made my fictional book life a happier, better place. And I didn't even know it would be. I am recommending these books to everyone. They are such an accomplishment; they are, to me, what a really good fantasy is--they feel like living, breathing things, a remarkable new world where I'm just as delighted as Sophie to find out what's the same and what's different. And just a little bit afraid as she and Bram posit their ideas about what those similarities and differences mean. But what a ride! ( )
  waclements7 | Jan 10, 2016 |
Book one was quite good. Well, as good as a book I gave 4 stars to, I don't mean to imply it was the best thing I'd ever read. Book two . . . not as good.

I don't recall Sophie being so . . . overally emotional in the first book, but there just might have been more to distract me, what with a new world to explore and all, that I might have overlooked it. So, yeah, that was off-putting.

For the most part the beginning of the book is good-ish. There are elements along the way of the thing that took over the book for the second half (last third? I forget now when it started). The thing it became? A romance novel. The kind with bare chested men with long flowing hair, and women with adoration in their eyes clinging to him. I suppose I might have felt differently if it had been Sophie and Zita who had been mooning over each other. I mean, Garland Parrish, the ship captain, was 1) really old (or at least much older than Sophie, eww), and much more importantly 2) someone who seemed to have had a romantic entanglement with Sophie's aunt (super-eww -> not the romantic entanglement with the aunt, the moving from aunt to niece).

Of course Zita is female. And Sophie is female. So, there's that issue. Then again, Zita's a lesbian. And the author, apparently, is a lesbian, so . . ..

Ah well, truthfully, I'd have been much more happy if the only romance that had sprung up involved that girl they picked up from the sea and her beloved Rahsad (or however his name was spelled). The romance story-line kind of took over and derailed the book. Both the one between Garland and Sophie, and the one involving Sophie being suspicious of everything her father did, and just accepting the displaced cousins words about arranged marriages (I'm being purposely vague here).

So, more of this fantasy world is seen. Sylvanna, Cly's homeland (Cly being Sophie's father), and Isle Morta (I think it's name is something like that). Plus some more underwater darting around by Sophie. The exploring, and adventuring, and mysteries were good and neat. Heck, even the weird little over-the-top romance between the goat-girl and the prince was diverting (I'm referring to them wrong. I don't recall what word was used, but it wasn't goat-girl, and I don't recall them actually using the word 'prince' to describe the boy). No, it was the romantic entanglement between Sophie and Garland that kind of sucked all of the joy out of the book.

Heck even the part where Sophie acts stupidly while on Sylvanna was interesting enough. So it has to say something, I suppose, about how much I rather disliked the Garland-Sophie romance that I end up at 3 stars for the book, eh? ( )
  Lexxi | Dec 11, 2015 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
A.M. Dellamonicaprimary authorall editionscalculated
Sheppard, CynthiaCover artistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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For Peter Watts and Caitlin Sweet,

who came together in defiance of biological reality.
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The blond woman had chapped fingertips with ragged, oft-gnawed nails, and she was half her attacker's size.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Note that some editions miscredit the cover art to Karla Ortiz, who did the cover art for book 1. It is by Cynthia Sheppard.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 076533450X, Hardcover)

As soon as Sophie Hansa returned to our world, she is anxious to once again go back to Stormwrack. Unable to discuss the wondrous sights she has seen, and unable to tell anyone what happened to her in her time away, Sophie is in a holding pattern, focused entirely on her eventual chance to return.

With the sudden arrival of Garland Parrish, Sophie is once again gone. This time, she has been called back to Stormwrack in order to spend time with her father, a Duelist-Adjudicator, who is an unrivaled combatant and fearsome negotiator. But is he driven by his commitment to seeing justice prevail, or is he a sociopath? Soon, she discovers something repellent about him that makes her reject him, and everything he is offering.
Adrift again, she discovers that her time spent with her father is not without advantages, however, for Sophie has discovered there is nothing to stop her from setting up a forensic institute in Stormwrack, investigating cases that have been bogged down in the courts, sometimes for years. Her fresh look into a long-standing case between two of the islands turns up new information that could get her, and her friends, pulled into something bold and daring, which changes the entire way she approaches this strange new world. . . .

(retrieved from Amazon Tue, 01 Sep 2015 04:59:56 -0400)

"As soon as Sophie Hansa returned to our world, she is anxious to once again go back to Stormwrack. Unable to discuss the wondrous sights she has seen, and unable to tell anyone what happened to her in her time away, Sophie is in a holding pattern, focused entirely on her eventual chance to return. With the sudden arrival of Garland Parrish, Sophie is once again gone. This time, she has been called back to Stormwrack in order to spend time with her father, a Duelist-Adjudicator, who is an unrivaled combatant and fearsome negotiator. But is he driven by his commitment to seeing justice prevail, or is he a sociopath? Soon, she discovers something repellent about him that makes her reject him, and everything he is offering. Adrift again, she discovers that her time spent with her father is not without advantages, however, for Sophie has discovered there is nothing to stop her from setting up a forensic institute in Stormwrack, investigating cases that have been bogged down in the courts, sometimes for years. Her fresh look into a long-standing case between two of the islands turns up new information that could get her, and her friends, pulled into something bold and daring, which changes the entire way she approaches this strange new world"--Jacket.… (more)

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