(I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a review).
(This review may contain spoilers).
I’d probably give this book 3.5 stars out of 5. I found myself quite confused by the start… and I wasn’t sure exactly when and where this book was supposed to be set.
I did find the characters to be interesting, even though I was completely lost by some of cultural aspects. I would have liked a bit more of an explanation about some of the things I was reading about. While I did find the mentions of the old gods and saints to be quite interesting, I was also confused by the differences between them and their relation to the culture.
There was a lot of tension in this book and I did care about the two main characters… but they didn’t really seem to grow up very much during the course of the book. Even though there was the glossing over of seven years, I felt that the only change was in how far away the memories were. Odiana did come across as a bit manipulative at times, but I’m not sure she realised she was doing so.
I did find Nacaño to be an interesting character. I could believe in his goal to protect Odiana because his mother asked him to. But although there was violence in this book, a lot of that seemed surreal. The descriptions were fleeting and made me feel like I was in a dream state.
It was interesting to see how salt water was described as being poisoned, but there were times I found myself confused about how they’d found the good water and the food. I couldn’t get a proper image of the surroundings in my head… or of the characters, either.
Although it was interesting to see the bits of Spanish used in the book, I did think that it was unnecessary, since Spanish was presumably the language they were speaking anyway. It’s like having random Japanese in a book set in Japan; presumably, that’s the language they are speaking.
I think this book could have stood to be longer and I would have liked to see more of a friendship between the two characters. I’m not sure I’d read more books by this author in the future… it would depend on the plot of the book, I think.