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  • Radiant

  • A Novel
  • By: Karina Sumner-Smith
  • Narrated by: Jeena Yi
  • Length: 11 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 32
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 29
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 29

When a rich City man comes to her with a young woman's ghost tethered to his chest, Xhea has no idea that this ghost will change everything. The ghost, Shai, is a Radiant, a rare person who generates so much power that the Towers use it to fuel their magic, heedless of the pain such use causes. Shai's home Tower is desperate to get the ghost back and force her into a body, any body, so that it can regain its position, while the Tower's rivals seek the ghost to use her magic for their own ends.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Enjoyable, but I feel some ideas may have been stolen.

  • By Justin on 07-08-19

Fabulous new trilogy from a promising young author

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-17-15

If you could sum up Radiant in three words, what would they be?

immersive, provocative, exciting

What was one of the most memorable moments of Radiant?

The moment in which the protagonist swears her protection and devotion to another. This not only marks a watershed in her life, but forever cements what is one of the more profound relationships I've ever come across in genre fiction.

What about Jeena Yi’s performance did you like?

The tone of her voice is perfect for the protagonist. Most of the time I thought she was bang on in her interpretation of the dialogue and narrative, but occasionally I felt her to be a little too monotone.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Like Game of Thrones, Radiant foregrounds systems of power and control that privilege some at the expense of others. The exploitation of Radiants was truly horrifying. Try as I might, I could not dismiss this as only fiction - it resonates too powerfully with human history.

Any additional comments?

Part way through, I realized that this was the first genre novel I have come across where the main protagonists are both female, and the key relationship is one of friendship, not romance - a refreshing, and deeply insightful variation. Radiant defies generic categories, mixing elements of magic, zombie-culture, post apocalyptic literature, quest-based story-telling and science fiction in a truly engaging tale. You won't be able to put it down once you start, and it will stay with you afterwards. I can't wait for the next two!