Sky in the Deep
by Adrienne Young (AKA the best fantasy author ever, this week)
Raised to be a warrior, seventeen-year-old Eelyn fights alongside her Aska clansmen in an ancient rivalry against the Riki clan. Her life is brutal but simple: fight and survive. Until the day she sees the impossible on the battlefield—her brother, fighting with the enemy—the brother she watched die five years ago.
Faced with her brother's betrayal, she must survive the winter in the mountains with the Riki, in a village where every neighbor is an enemy, every battle scar possibly one she delivered. But when the Riki village is raided by a ruthless clan thought to be a legend, Eelyn is even more desperate to get back to her beloved family.
She is given no choice but to trust Fiske, her brother’s friend, who sees her as a threat. They must do the impossible: unite the clans to fight together, or risk being slaughtered one by one. Driven by a love for her clan and her growing love for Fiske, Eelyn must confront her own definition of loyalty and family while daring to put her faith in the people she’s spent her life hating.
Part Wonder Woman, part Vikings—and all heart.
Yes... I do have a trend. Forgive me if I absolutely think historical warrior women are magnificent. Especially Vikings. And gladiators. And assassins. Actually, anything and everything that represents strong butt-kicking characters. It's a whoooleeee thing, trust me.
WARNING! WARNING! WARNING! ABORT IF YOU HAVENT READ IT YET!
My soul just got stolen by this book. Seriously, I ain't even joking. The first few sentences left me utterly flabbergasted. The way the author represented Vikings...wait a sec, let me clean the tears off my eyespheres. AAAAAnd I'm back. The beginning is what I've always expected from a hardcore, warrior, Viking Esque masterpiece. And for that my heart thanks you, dear author. Never have I been so proud to have a hardback copy of a book in my entire life ( she says while forgetting the other 345 books she thought the same about) The cover is magnificent, it truly brings on the "THIS IS SPARTA!" kinda vibe which is totally okay with me. And can we take a second to just breathe in the beautiful enemies to lovers which in my opinion, is 100% better than friends to lovers. I don't know, I think it has something to do with my villain fetish. Maybe, probably. Okay, I admit it. I have a problem. But, is it a problem tho? It hurts nothing but my heart, which at this stage of my bookish existence looks a little like a patchwork of needles. Yep, needles. Moving on from that little mental spasm, let's talk like collected human beings... EELYN IS THE BOMB AND FISKE. OH MY GOD FISKE! HE IS MY HUSBAND. I REFUSE TO BELIEVE HE'S TAKEN. GIRLFRIEND, YOU CAN BACK OFF FROM MY MAN. Last time I checked, you hated his guts, I may have too at the beginning but that was back then. I fell in love with him first, fight me...oh wait, don't, I changed my mind. (She says while remembering how Eelyin tore the eyes out from some guy) Alright *awkward laugh*, getting on with this review...huh, I just noticed that when I REALLY like a book my thought process is all over the place, and I sincerely apologize for it. In a note related to the book's synopsis I would've sincerely wished it would've been less. What I mean by it, is that you could've cut it shorter as to not spoil the whole book's purpose. That's about the only thing that I didn't like when I started it. Now, let's get a piece of my rant against Iri. I get it, girl, he's your brother. You thought he was dead, he thought you left him but let's get one thing clear, I would've been mad at him for a while and by 'a while' I mean, weeks. Especially if he KNEW I was alive and didn't even send a letter with a pigeon or something saying, I don't know, 'Hey, I'm alive, just so you know, and there's no need to mourn me or anything. Okay bye." Was that seriously so much to ask for? Oh, and don't get even get me started DON NOT GET ME STARTED, on his dumb excuses. I craved a conflict between them, I craved her to be as savage as she was on the battlefield, I would've adored her if she would've skinned him with her words. And she kinda did, I guess. But then, BUT THEN, just as they were getting ready for an all-out war she was all like " I forgive you brother, even though you broke my heart, made me a slave, were rude to me and made me believe you were dead for years. I forgive you". Let me breathe for a sec. I was furious. Actually, furious does not even begin to describe how I felt at that moment. Seriously I get that you love him, regardless of him being a GradeA douchnugget who does not have a single ounce of shame. But, baby, you should've at least have made him sweat for what he did. Oh! and I just remembered, he denied ANY connection to his people. My goodness, my blood pressure is rising. His father was almost destroyed by his supposed 'death' and he didn't even care, scratch that, he cared. Just not enough. Alright, getting on with the next topic at hand...Fiske. I had no doubts that I absolutely hated him. In the beginning. Okay, in the first pages of his birth. Maybe a bit longer than that. But I was aware that he was going to be the love interest so I forgave him a bit, after wishing for his legs to be cut off. 3 times. 9 times. Okay, 147 times. Jeesh. Way to ruin the fun. His character development tho? was INSANE. He went from brutal, rude, violent, and annoying piece of trash to brutal, rude, violent...and um, nicer. Yeah. Eelyn's father was such a good person. Well, apart from the whole "I'm a Viking, I shall kill all my enemies and hang their heads from the pyre" He was good. Other things I can mention is the whole world. The created setting was so refreshing in its nature and the way Eelyn thought, was very relatable. Which, I kind of find so admirable because it made me feel soooo much more important and skillful in action than I really am. Thank you, Adrienne, for making have all those conflicted feelings and making me fall in love with all of the characters. Also, the Herja. Holy crap, those dudes were terrifying. Yuck.
The first page.
Fiske being the beautiful specimen he is.
The amazing worldbuilding, although all the names kinda confuzzled me.
Halvard being such a cute kid.
Iri dying. Oh, wait, that ever happened. Heh.
Note to author: Adrienne I need a second installment. I always feel like I'm saying this. WHY?!? HUH, AUTHORS?!? WHY?!?