This was a fairyloot book, linked into their beautiful deceptions theme for october, and disappointment from my last book ( the haunting of hill house) I was really looking forward to this. It didnt disappoint.
In a world where magic exists, people with demon features/blood are higher ranking we follow the story of Lei. her mother is gone, taken years ago and she works with her dad in their herb shop.
One day hooves are heard and men enter the shop – they take Lei from her family and shes thrust into the life of a paper girl ( BTW I was teary eyed by the end of chapter two – and thats without really knowing the characters.
Paper Girls belong to the king. they are elegant, poised and service his needs fore a year. Then they are given other palace roles and new girls are chosen. This is the way it has always been.
Lei is girl nine. lacking the training and knowledge of the other girls she is at a disadvantage in pleasing the king. Not that she wants to. Some of the girls are friendlier than others, and some have their own agenda – this is the story of how Lei copes with the life changing events that happen to her, and how she and the other girls deal with the sexual predator that the king is.
I devoured this book, My train home last night was delayed by 40 minutes which usually would annoy me – however it gave me just enough time to finish the tale. Its not finished though, there are threads left to create a second book, and hopefully a third. I enjoyed Lei learning and understanding herself, transitioning into a women, the use of demons with animal trails to identify personalities and skill sets and (potential spoiler alert – stop reading here if you dont want to know) that a book that as the lgbt tick isn’t about a young boy/s or men and their discovery of sexuality. The book comes with a warning that there are scene of sexual violence and assault but it doesnt feel out of place or forced to meet the story-line, or get shock value. Its so right, but obviously wrong.
The book is out now so if you want a read thats intriguing, trechourous and fantastical go get it now.