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Alanna: The First Adventure by Tamora Pierce
MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
5,9081561,030 (4.16)282
  1. 80
    Dealing with Dragons by Patricia C. Wrede (jfoster_sf)
    jfoster_sf: This is another fun fantasy with a strong female character who refuses to conform.
  2. 91
    Graceling by Kristin Cashore (francescadefreitas, helgagrace, espertus)
    espertus: Both Graceling and the Lioness quartet are stories of strong but vulnerable young women wanting to use their considerable powers for good and maintain their identity in the face of romance.
  3. 81
    First Test by Tamora Pierce (kochanneo)
  4. 60
    The Hero and the Crown by Robin McKinley (infiniteletters)
  5. 60
    Sabriel by Garth Nix (_Zoe_)
  6. 40
    Eon: Dragoneye Reborn by Alison Goodman (shadrach_anki, Caramellunacy)
    shadrach_anki: There are definite similarities in theme between these two books, but each has its own take on it.
    Caramellunacy: Both of these stories are fantasy stories about a girl disguising herself as a boy in order to be allowed to apprentice & learn to fight. Alanna learns to wield both sword and magic as a knight & mage. Eon(a) is chosen to be a dragoneye and must learn to wield the political and magical power this brings.… (more)
  7. 40
    Green Rider by Kristen Britain (ImmortalAussie)
    ImmortalAussie: A very similar thing to Tamora Pierce but different enough at the same time Still just as fantastic
  8. 30
    Wild Magic by Tamora Pierce (TomWaitsTables)
  9. 30
    Crown Duel (Crown Duel / Court Duel) by Sherwood Smith (Owlnip)
    Owlnip: Similar in terms of the kind of world you get to escape into, with a strong young female protagonist and wonderful cast of characters.
  10. 30
    Arrows of the Queen by Mercedes Lackey (Owlnip)
  11. 20
    Flora Segunda: Being the Magickal Mishaps of a Girl of Spirit, Her Glass-Gazing Sidekick, Two Ominous Butlers (One Blue), a House with Eleven Thousand Rooms, and a Red Dog by Ysabeau S. Wilce (Konran)
  12. 31
    Nobody's Princess by Esther Friesner (Caramellunacy)
    Caramellunacy: Both are stories about a headstrong young woman determined to learn to fight like the boys. Nobody's Princess is an imagining of Helen of Troy's life as a teenager (more tenacity and brains, less vapid beauty) steeped in Greek mythology. Alanna is the first in a fantasy series about a young woman who disguises herself as a boy so that she can be trained as a knight. Both are great girl power reads.… (more)
  13. 10
    The Magicians' Guild by Trudi Canavan (Owlnip)
  14. 21
    Bloody Jack: Being an Account of the Curious Adventures of Mary "Jacky" Faber, Ship's Boy by L. A. Meyer (_Zoe_)
  15. 10
    The Privilege of the Sword by Ellen Kushner (electronicmemory)
    electronicmemory: Two girls deal with society's expectations as they learn swordplay and harsh political realities.
  16. 00
    Frostborn by Lou Anders (FFortuna)
    FFortuna: Similar adventure-y stuff, and Frostborn has a boy and a girl with equal plot attention.
  17. 00
    Wizard's Hall by Jane Yolen (FFortuna)
  18. 00
    Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo (trillianiris)
    trillianiris: This book sort of seemed to me like an in-depth look at what George's side of life (thieving, gangs, assassins, espionage, etc.) may have been like (though a little more violent than it would have been in Alanna's universe), plus has magic and dangerous adventures.… (more)
  19. 00
    Defy by Sara B. Larson (BookLizard)
    BookLizard: Strong female character disguised as a boy.
  20. 00
    The Realms of the Gods by Tamora Pierce (Morteana)

(see all 28 recommendations)


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» See also 282 mentions

English (154)  Danish (1)  German (1)  All languages (156)
Showing 1-5 of 154 (next | show all)
This was a pleasant, enjoyable read.

It was not particularly exciting (for those who like action! adventure! there was an incident near the end, but that's about it), kind of a Tom Brown's Schooldays set in a fantasy kingdom with a cross-dressing hero(ine). The magic wasn't very magical, the supporting cast rather beige and uninteresting--I was expecting more from what is apparently a beloved classic from many readers' youth.

The set-up is that Alanna likes boy things (e.g. fighting) and her brother likes girl things (e.g. not fighting) so they trade places. But that huge decision ultimately matters very little--the plot could basically unfold if Alanna were a short boy and would need only very little alteration. So I don't think the author made the most of her premise, not by a long shot.

It may get richer and deeper and more interesting as one goes further, but I may not ever find out. ( )
  ashleytylerjohn | Sep 19, 2018 |
Good middle grade book ( )
  shan.blackman | Aug 21, 2018 |
My first Tamora Pierce book, finally! I was totally immersed in Tortall, Alanna's world, and her friends. I love how fantasy books, well all books really, can take me to a new world. It felt different with Alanna. It felt just right. I hope to see Alanna grow more as a person and as a knight. I really want to know what makes her and her brother so different. Their mother perhaps? ( )
  AdrianaGarcia | Jul 10, 2018 |
Originally posted on Tales to Tide You Over

I try to read a novel or two by the BayCon writer guest of honor each year, even those known to me. I thought I had read Alanna, but the story in my memory and the story of the book don’t quite match, so this was a happy circumstance.

Alanna starts out precocious and spoiled in a way that could easily have become rotten. I had difficulty connecting with her at first because she does not care about how the consequences would fall on others much more heavily. I’m not alone in seeing her prideful decisiveness as a flaw, though. Maude, the local wise woman, counsels her in much the same even as Alanna pushes her to go beyond her comfort with magic.

What started as an annoyance is critical to the book.

This is an excellent character story with growth and maturity building out of circumstances. Alanna comes across as spoiled in the beginning because she has been. At the same time, we learn she’s also been taught to be self-sufficient and respect the labors of all classes despite being born noble.

Her stubborn nature makes it hard for her to accept her place, but it also gives her the strength and determination to change her future. Even better, it is tempered by an awareness of the people around her that grows with her maturity. This leads to unusual friends in unusual places at all ranks of society. What stands out, though, is her treatment of them as individuals, seeing beyond class and gender restrictions to the person beneath.

The book is an adventure, despite the focus on character growth, with real costs and villains where you least expect them…which isn’t quite true. The main villain is well seeded, as are many other plot twists. I often put the pieces together before they became obvious, especially with Alanna being willfully blind, but my awareness did not lessen my enjoyment. How Alanna ignores her instincts when her friends don’t share them turns out to be a greater character flaw than her stubbornness.

The book takes quite a few odd twists and turns while raising real questions to ponder. I appreciated when the events showed how there are many ways to approach problems and with equal success. The writing itself is a bit older in style, but this story shows how a so-called slippery point of view can be done successfully. I never lost track of who controlled the narrative despite it moving around a lot in the beginning, and then again, once George appears.

I did not mention many characters by name, but that’s because the cast became huge. This reads like a realistic view of a knight’s training, with concerns about homework, chores, and bullies, but it’s so much more than a boarding school tale. Loyalty and the bonds between those brought through training together are a big part of the story. Alanna’s gender drives her and yet offers few barriers beyond the need for her secrecy and how she deals with physical changes. I liked this approach as historically many women passed as men in the military.

The story is strong in both the characters and the tale it tells. There’s trouble on personal and greater levels, but everything is offered in a personal way so we get the ground floor view. Alanna never supports a value by station perspective, and the story reveals the costs of becoming separate from the populace in many small ways.

Ultimately, I’m delighted to have picked this story, whether I’ve read it before long ago or not. ( )
  MarFisk | Jun 18, 2018 |
Shortly after telling a coworker that I'd never read any of Tamora Pierce's work, a coworker brought me in all four copies of the Song of the Lioness quartet — books that she loved when she was younger. I picked one up to fill my lunch hour and haven't been able to put them down since. The story of Alanna, a young woman with magic and a bullheaded decision to become a knight despite all odds makes for a delightful adventure story. She dresses as a boy to enlist in training to be a page, a squire, and then a knight — a difficult, strenuous task, which she pursues with dedication, often continuing training on her own during her rest periods. The skills don't come easy, but are achieved through hard work and discipline, which is admirable. Alanna is wonderful and all the characters around her are wonderful, and I cannot wait to continue with the quartet. ( )
  andreablythe | Apr 6, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 154 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (9 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Tamora Pierceprimary authorall editionscalculated
Alvarado, TriniNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Heyer, MarileeCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Patti, JoyceCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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who made it all finally happen,
who told me to talk to Claire
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"That is my decision."
"Our gods are much too busy in our lives for us to ignore them." -- Myles of Olau, p.143
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
A young woman disguises herself as a boy in order to be trained as a knight. 
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0689878559, Mass Market Paperback)

Call it fate, call it intuition, or just call it common sense, but somehow young Alanna knows she isn't meant to become some proper lady cloistered in a convent. Instead, she wants to be a great warrior maiden--a female knight. But in the land of Tortall, women aren't allowed to train as warriors. So Alanna finds a way to switch places with her twin, Thom, and take his place as a knight in training at the palace of King Roald. Disguising herself as a boy, Alanna begins her training as a page in the royal court. Soon, she is garnering the admiration of all around her, including the crown prince, with her strong work ethic and her thirst for knowledge. But all the while, she is haunted by the recurring vision of a black stone city that emanates evil... somehow she knows it is her fate to purge that place of its wickedness. But how will she find it? And can she fulfill her destiny while keeping her gender a secret?

With Alanna: The First Adventure, veteran fantasy author Tamora Pierce has created a lively, engaging heroine who will charm middle-school readers with her tomboyish bravado and have them eagerly searching for the next book in the Song of the Lioness series. Like Brian Jacques's tales of Redwall, this popular quartet is an entertaining fantasy series for younger teens. (Ages 10 to 13) --Jennifer Hubert

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:07:33 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

Fantasy. De 10-?arige tvillinger Alanna og Thom er b?rn af en lensherre i landet Tortall. De har magiske evner og hvirvles ind i dramatiske begivenheder, da de trodser deres traditionsbestemte opdragelse.

» see all 10 descriptions

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