January 8, 2016 by ceresbooksworld
Sword and Verse by Kathy MacMillan
Publisher : Harper Teen
Publication Date : January 19th, 2016
Source : eArc sent by the publisher via Edelweiss
Rating : 5 hearts
Synopsis (from goodreads)
Raisa was just a child when she was sold to work as a slave in the kingdom of Qilara. Despite her young age, her father was teaching her to read and write, grooming her to take his place as a Learned One. In Qilara, the Arnathim, like Raisa, are the lowest class, and literacy is a capital offense. What’s more, only the king, prince, tutor, and tutor-in-training are allowed to learn the very highest order language, the language of the gods. So when the tutor-in-training is executed for teaching slaves this sacred language, and Raisa is selected to replace her, Raisa knows any slipup on her part could mean death.
Keeping her secret is hard enough, but the romance that’s been growing between her and Prince Mati isn’t helping matters. Then Raisa is approached by the Resistance—an underground army of slave rebels—to help liberate Arnath slaves. She wants to free her people, but that would mean aiding a war against Mati. As Raisa struggles with what to do, she discovers a secret that the Qilarites have been hiding for centuries—one that, if uncovered, could bring the kingdom to its knees.
Raisa was a slave since she’s 6 years old, one day after the Tutor was executes for treason, Raisa is chosen to be the next one, and she began to learn how to write the Gods characters with Prince Mati. Raisa has feelings for Mati and she’s approached by the Resistance. She must choose if she wants to help them or not.
Sword and Verse is written in Raisa’s POV, The Kingdom of Qilara used the Arnath as slave. This book is so great; it’s fantastic with religious beliefs in many Gods. I liked that at the beginning of every chapter the author makes us discover these goddesses and gods. It’s really interesting and it brings a lot to the story.
Raisa is not a badass, she doesn’t want to save the world, she’s a little selfish, the only things she wants is to decipher her Heart Verse, written by her father before he was killed. The only things that she doesn’t want only for her is giving food to Linthi. She’s not a typical heroin and I like that; we aren’t all so strong and independent. She is less selfish at the end of the book but take some bad decisions.
Mati is an important character, he is clever and kind, he doesn’t want to rule and he’s happy for the moment, because his father does the job. I love his faith in Raisa and he loves her so beautifully. They really are a perfect couple.
I was on a roller coaster during the book because even if Mati and Raisa love each other, they have responsibility and sometimes it’s hard.
A word about the resistance and Jonis, his motive are good but the way he act is very bad, he has problem with the way the Qilarites treats Arnath people, but he does exactly the same.
Kathy MacMillan has created a world with a lot of details, the language of the Gods and the symbols are really clear in my head. This book can be read very easily and it’s amazing.
The only things that stopped me to put Evil Love rating is that sometimes I would have wanted a more mature Raisa and I would love that Jonis to be more comprehensive. The Qilarites aren’t all the same.
I would definitely recommend this book to all the people who love fantasy, Young Adult, action, romance and a great world-building. And there isn’t Love Triangle at all.
About the author
Kathy MacMillan is a writer, American Sign Language interpreter, consultant, librarian and signing storyteller. She holds National Interpreter Certification from the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf. Her diverse career includes working as a children’s librarian at public libraries, working a school librarian at the Maryland School for the Deaf, leading the Eldersburg Library Bookcart Drill Team, and performing as Scooby-Doo, Velma, and a host of other characters at a theme park. Kathy presents American Sign Language storytelling programs through her business, Stories By Hand, and also runs the storytime resource website Storytime Stuff. She is a volunteer director and board president of Deaf Camps, Inc., a nonprofit organization that provides camps for deaf children. Kathy holds a Master of Library Science from the University of Maryland, a Bachelor of English from the Catholic University of America, and a Certificate of American Sign Language Interpreting from the Community College of Baltimore County. She lives in Owings Mills, MD with her husband, son, and a cat named Pancake.