‘In a village without sound…
For as long as Fei can remember, no one in her village has been able to hear. Rocky terrain and frequent avalanches make it impossible to leave the village, so Fei and her people are at the mercy of a zipline that carries food up the treacherous cliffs from Beiguo, a mysterious faraway kingdom.
When villagers begin to lose their sight, deliveries from the zipline shrink. Many go hungry. Fei and all the people she loves are plunged into crisis, with nothing to look forward to but darkness and starvation.
One girl hears a call to action…
Until one night, Fei is awoken by a searing noise. Sound becomes her weapon.
She sets out to uncover what’s happened to her and to fight the dangers threatening her village. A handsome miner with a revolutionary spirit accompanies Fei on her quest, bringing with him new risks and the possibility of romance. They embark on a majestic journey from the peak of their jagged mountain village to the valley of Beiguo, where a startling truth will change their lives forever…
And unlocks a power that will save her people.’ (Goodreads) (272 pages, November 10th, 2015, Razorbill)
I don’t really know where to begin with this book. I’ll start with what I know. It’s a standalone fantasy novel from one of my favorite authors. It works really well as a standalone. The story doesn’t feel stretched out and it’s just the perfect length without boring us with too much detail. It’s refreshing to read such a short story, but still have a finished story arc.
The only thing I would say and this diminished my experience reading this book, is that while this story is short and it’s quite refreshing to read a fantasy standalone, I feel that the characters weren’t really fleshed out. I couldn’t really relate to them, because we didn’t get to know them that much. I know that’s a given in a longer story, but it’s too bad, because I didn’t know them that well and the decisions they made didn’t stir any feelings with me. The story just didn’t stick with me because of that.
I must say that I was a bit afraid that because the book is so short, we wouldn’t get that much Chinese folklore, but I was really surprised by it. I don’t know much of their stories and their history, but I do have the feeling that Richelle Mead really researched the different stories and she put a lot of effort into it and that is something I adore in books and something I look forward to in fantasy books.
3,5 out of 5 stars!