Don't judge this book by the ridiculous cover image! A rough and ready heroine, down to Earth, skilled at protecting her matriarchal community in a post apocalyptic society (where males are rare due to a virulent disease) goes on a dangerous journey to seek information about another group which would join with hers. With her enormous dogs as companions and helpers she is helped by women of many ethnicities and races as she rides her horse northward towards a wilderness ruled by crazed anarchists and a bloody dictator. Love, loyalty, intelligence, and a passion for justice involve her in situations she little anticipated. Could not stop reading. Well written by Laurie R. King before she tuned to mysteries.
I enjoyed reading this. Future world where almost no one remembers what it was like "Before" and a quest taken on by Dian, a strong, independent and somewhat solitary woman. It was character driven, and I liked the characters a lot. It was also rich in details and I enjoyed the day-to-day before the journey and the blow-by-blow of the journey itself. And then, quite suddenly, it was over.
The wrap-up was so fast and superficial I felt cheated out of something that should have taken another hundred pages. One short chapter and we're done. Unfortunately, the end of a story, whether it's a book or a movie, can spoil what had been pleasurable up to that point. I felt cheated out of the richness that the author had bestowed on every other aspect of the book. The Homecoming! It should have been glorious and equally rich in detail, despite the book's hefty length. It's almost as if Ms. Richards/Ms. King got tired of telling the story and rushed to happily ever after before I was ready for it.
Still, I can't bring myself to mark the book down more than one star for it.
I am constantly impressed with the scope and depth of King's writing. In all the various genres, her combination of character, emotional and physical detail, and sense of history, depth and scope make her stories come alive. I always come away having learned something new. This isn't "candy" reading, it is a gourmet meal that you can't stop eating. This foray into the post-apocalyptic fantasy genre is another win. It is rooted in her strengths as a writer - exploring the emotional and physical depth of leading female characters. The strength of this story is her creativity in exploring a world where gender roles are flipped on their head in creative and powerful ways, but these women are fully women, not taking on some artificial "maleness". I can't wait to find the next surprising new adventure from my favorite author.
I, do not know where to begin. I guess right after I read my first Laurie King novel. It was a Kate Martinelli murder mystery, her first in that series I believe. Besides actually meeting Ms. King at a book signing at a library in Vacaville CA. I felt I knew her from her writing. You know the kind of author that gets under your skin, and you just KNOW her. I love all her different series, the Sherlock Holmes and wife!yes I said wife , are so, such delightful reading, I would read the first few pages of the next in the series as I was reading the last pages of the one I was about to complete. But this is supposed to be about Califias's Daughter. My favorite style of writing, realistic fantasy that really could happen, and she does it magnificently! And in my hometown of San Francisco! (Kate Martinelli works &lives in San Fran as well). Ok I read it four times, in a row!LOL! I couldn't help myself. A very powerful and moving story, ambitious yet not unbelievable for a possible outcome to our future history. Thank you again for all the sleep I lost, reading instead of meeting friends with a fake sniffles excuse!
So far, I've really enjoyed everything that Laurie R king has written, and the same goes for this. We have a striking setting, engaging characters and a meaty backstory in a very good take of the distopian genre. Like all good science fiction, it takes a convention, turns it over on it's head and lets us see what crawls out from under. Here, men are rare, protected and restricted. Women are the leaders, fighters, farmers, and hunters in a kind of western frontier.. Enjoy!
If you are a lover of Laurie Kings writings about English mystery , Sherlock Holmes and her other books you will be surprised to know she wrote this under another name. It is science fiction of the really good kind. Destroyed world areas, few men, areas controlled by Women a love interest and more. A women searching for some people who want to move to the territory she controls with some other women but she wants to know more about them since they have not got a great rep. She gets involved with a strange group of women who control another area and are very cruel and use men as slaves.This is well written and a great read.
Loved the story and the evolution of women. I did not like that she saved the man but then there had to be some kind of romantic tension to carry the story forward. I did not understand the problems with the northern village other than it smacked of patriarchy. I would love to read more about this dystopian future.
King really does not know how to write a bad novel. Such is the depth of her imaginative penetration of her characters' minds and hearts that the reader finishes her books knowing the characters better than most of their real acquaintances. King specializes in strong women confronted by serious challenges, some of which exist in the worlds they live in, and some of which are internal. This science fiction novel imagines a post-catastrophic world in which women are the adventurers as a matter of necessity, men having been sharply reduced as a percentage of the population. Among the pleasures of the novel are the heroine, Dian, an action hero who must accomplish a great feat of liberation while (unexpectedly) pregnant, and two male characters who inspire Dian to heroics without being action heroes themselves. To say nothing of the dog. If you're interested in character tested by ordeals and the best qualities of dogs and humans, you will be thrilled by this book.