Make sure you stop by Songstone's Main Tour Page @Seasons of Humility! There you'll find more information about the book, along with lots of other stops along this tour. There are several giveaways going on!
Songstone by Lena Goldfinch
Kita can meld song into stone. In a world with no written word, storytelling—the ability to meld (or magically impress) song into stone—is greatly honored. The village honors her master as their medicine man, but Kita knows he's secretly a sorcerer who practices black magic using drops of her blood. She fears he’ll use her beautiful gift for a killing spell, so she conceals it from him. Each day, his magic tightens around her neck like a rope. His spells blind the villagers, so they can’t see him for what he really is.
Not that anyone would want to help her. She was found in the forest as a baby and would have died if a village girl hadn't brought her home. But the villagers saw Kita's unusual coloring and decided she belonged to the mysterious tribe who lives in the forests of the volcano, a people feared for their mystical powers. So they fear her too. Now seventeen, she can barely admit her deepest longing: to know who she really is and where she belongs.
Then Pono, a young journeyman, arrives from the other side of the island. He's come to fulfill a pact between their villages: to escort a storyteller back to his village—a storyteller who'll be chosen at the great assembly. Finally, in Pono, Kita sees her one slim chance at freedom and she'll risk her life to take it.
A dark, twisty tale of sorcery, tummy-tingling romance, and adventure, inspired by the folklore of New Zealand's Māori people.
My Rating: 4/5 stars
A couple of months ago, I purchased Lena's book, The Language of Souls. I'd been hearing great things about her writing and I soon discovered why. The Language of Souls is a novella, so despite greatly enjoying it, I was wishing for a chance at seeing Lena's writing in a full length novel. I got my chance with Songstone, and I wasn't disappointed!
Kita is a strong leading lady! Despite having to learn her place, or else suffering cruel punishment from her master, Matiko, she holds onto to her stubborn ways. She's perfected her storytelling(lying) ways, and she enjoys using this "talent" on her master. I think it goes without saying that I'm not supportive of lying, but I snickered a few times as Kita made up things to convince Matiko of. I've somewhat recently finished reading Matilda, and it kind of reminded me of Matilda's ways of punishing her horrible parents. Kita stays strong despite her fear, though, and I enjoyed watching her grow throughout the story.
As the description says, this IS a dark story. There is dark magic involved. There is both "good" and evil magic involved. Just to give you an idea, some of the characters wear a necklace of lizard bones and shake them to enforce something they want, like control of someone. There's herbs and blood mixed together to create a spell. For those of you who don't mind dark magic, I'd definitely recommend giving Songstone a chance! It is a perfectly clean and beautiful story! I thought it was a wonderfully *unique* story. Lena's descriptions painted a gorgeous picture in my mind as I read.
I also enjoyed researching a bit about the Maori people, which this story is based on. Honestly, I'd never heard of them before this book, so my knowledge of the world was expanded a bit more. ;)
I've found Lena's writing to be a breath of fresh air, and I'm greatly looking forward to reading Aire, which is patiently waiting on my kindle.
*I was provided a review copy in exchange for my honest opinion.
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Lena lives in a scenic small town in Massachusetts with her husband, two kids, and a very spoiled Black Lab. She writes fiction for young adults, mostly light fantasy with a healthy dose of "sigh-worthy" romance. You can visit her online at www.lenagoldfinch.blogspot.com.
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