Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zelie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.
But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were targeted and killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.
Now, Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.
Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers—and her growing feelings for the enemy.
The cliffhanger ending may leave some readers reeling but, rest assured, this is first in a trilogy.
Black Girl Magic indeed! It's no surprise that this epic trilogy opener has already been optioned for film. Full of cinematic action sequences (the most memorable of them set underwater and employing an army of the dead) and creatures worthy of Star Wars (horse-sized 'lionaires' have saber teeth and horns), it storms the boundaries of imagination. Yet it also confronts the conscience. Adeyemi's brutally depicted war between the noble, lighter-skinned kosidans, and the enslaved, darker-skinned majis poses thought-provoking questions about race, class, and authority that hold up a warning mirror to our sharply divided society.
- The New York Times
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