Book review by Aarene Storms: Swordheart

Saturday, February 22, 2020

Swordheart by T. Kingfisher

Halla is a sensible, middle-aged widow who has kept house for an elderly uncle since the death of her (unloved) husband. Now, her husband's (unloved) family is after Halla and her (desirable) inheritance. Choosing suicide over a forced marriage to a clammy-handed cousin, Halla draws the sword left in her inheritance...and meets the handsome soldier held captive within the blade.

Then, things go terribly wrong.

Outstanding world-building (in the realm of the "Clocktaur" stories, but this stands alone), and most of all, totally hilarious. I giggled through the entire book, and I want more stories about Halla!

Extra points for gender-fluid characters, outstanding non-humans, really cool and complicated magic, problem-solving that doesn't depend only on fireballs and swordplay, and a romance protagonist who isn't 17 years old.

Recommended for fantasy readers with brains, ages 12 to adult. Some on-page sexual situations, some cussing, some nekkidness, a little bit of blood, quite a lot of magic.

The events may not have happened; still, the story is true. --R. Silvern

Aarene Storms, youth services librarian
Richmond Beach and Lake Forest Park Libraries, KCLS


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