The Raven Tower is a slow burn of a story, building progressively deeper until you’re entranced by the many layers of history and plot, all converging on an epic reveal worthy of this nation of gods. Leckie is a master storyteller, painting an intricate portrait of a god and a young man who has caught the god’s eye. There are enough twists and turns, mysterious doors, and conspiracies to keep the thrills coming. You’ll revel in the history of this city, in the secrets held deep within its walls and, in the end, you’ll ask how nobody figured it all out.
I was most impressed with Leckie’s use of a second person narrative. It’s unusual to find in any type of literature, and it gave the narrative an omnipotent feel. We find out soon enough that we’re hearing a story told by a god who has spent centuries sitting on a hill, watching the world pass by. The story switches between the god’s experiences and those of Eolo, a young man who is aid to the Lease’s Heir in a large, prosperous city on a harbor. What seems to be a typical tale of family drama turns into something more as we learn more about this world of gods and promises. Wars were fought, gods were betrayed, and the stories make a brilliant base beneath the unfolding plot unfolding. It’s not until the final page that you realize just what this story is, and what the future holds.
The Raven Tower is the first Ann Leckie book I’ve read, and I was floored by her abilities as a writer. There were times when I questioned why we needed the details we were getting. As I continued reading, I slowly realized that every word was necessary to understand what was truly happening. There are short and long games at play and they fit into a perfect puzzle that was so fun to piece together. Enjoy the story of this mysterious god — it’s one that defines the word epic.
NOTE: I was provided a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for my honest, unbiased review.
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