Heart of the Sun Warrior
by Sue Lynn Tan
Publication Date November 15, 2022
Published by HarperCollins
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Genres: Fiction / Cultural Heritage, Fiction / Fantasy / Epic
***I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.***
The stunning sequel to Daughter of the Moon Goddess delves deeper into beloved Chinese mythology, concluding the epic story of Xingyin—the daughter of Chang’e and the mortal archer, Houyi—as she battles a grave new threat to the realm, in this powerful tale of love, sacrifice, and hope.
After winning her mother’s freedom from the Celestial Emperor, Xingyin thrives in the enchanting tranquility of her home. But her fragile peace is threatened by the discovery of a strange magic on the moon and the unsettling changes in the Celestial Kingdom as the emperor tightens his grip on power. While Xingyin is determined to keep clear of the rising danger, the discovery of a shocking truth spurs her into a perilous confrontation.
Forced to flee her home once more, Xingyin and her companions venture to unexplored lands of the Immortal Realm, encountering legendary creatures and shrewd monarchs, beloved friends and bitter adversaries. With alliances shifting quicker than the tides, Xingyin has to overcome past grudges and enmities to forge a new path forward, seeking aid where she never imagined she would. As an unspeakable terror sweeps across the realm, Xingyin must uncover the truth of her heart and claw her way through devastation—to rise against this evil before it destroys everything she holds dear, and the worlds she has grown to love . . . even if doing so demands the greatest price of all.
Heart of the Sun Warrior by Sue Lynn Tan is the second book in her amazing new duology, The Celestial Kingdom Duology, and should be read in order. This Chinese mythology-inspired fantasy had me enthralled from the very first page.
The story starts as Xingyin is living again with her mother on the moon after she won her mother’s freedom from the Celestial kingdom. Life is back the way she lived it before, except now she gets frequent visits from her friend, Prince Liwei who helped her save her mother.
However, all is not well in the Celestial Kingdom as the power has shifted and Xingyin’s enemy, General Wu is rising to power, and even her friends back in the Celestial Kingdom are worried about the changes.
I didn’t know what to expect with this second novel as the first one ended without a cliffhanger. Xingyin was at home with her mother and all was well. But, as soon as I started this book a sense of unease was immediate and I knew something terrible was about to happen, and it did.
The love triangle in this continues as both Liwei and Wenzhi fight for her heart. Xingyin has refused to see Wenzhi after his betrayal in the first book, but he continues to beg for her forgiveness and will do almost anything to win her heart. Liwei is by her side, but ultimately must decide between her and his family, and the throne.
This book is beautifully written with lovely descriptions and world-building. I also loved that the book comes with a map! I was able to follow the story as it flowed from one realm to another. The battle scenes were exciting and well-choreographed. The intensity of the battle and the extremely high stakes were interspersed with emotional moments of connection and friendships, making this a well-balanced fantasy novel.
I highly recommend Heart of the Sun Warrior to anyone who enjoys fantasy.
I received a complimentary copy of this book. The opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Uk Book Cover:
This is a tough call for me as I think both covers are beautiful.
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