Rummanah Aasi
 Many thanks to First Second Books and Netgalley for an advanced reader's copy of The Stone Heart by Faith Erin Hicks. The Stone Heart will be released on April 4, 2017 in bookstores and libraries near you.

Description: Kaidu and Rat have only just recovered from the assassination attempt on the General of All Blades when more chaos breaks loose in the Nameless City: deep conflicts within the Dao nation are making it impossible to find a political solution for the disputed territory of the City itself.
  To complicate things further, Kaidu is fairly certain he's stumbled on a formula for the lost weapon of the mysterious founders of the City. But sharing it with the Dao military would be a complete betrayal of his friendship with Rat. Can Kai find the right solution before the Dao find themselves at war?

Review: The Stone Heart builds upon the fabulous and intricate world building of the first volume, The Nameless City, and provides an action-packed sequel that focuses on intrigue and politics. Unlike the first volume that discussed prejudices and history with a more upbeat tone, this second volume is darker with lots of bloodshed.
  After thwarting an assassination, Kai and Rat's friendship has inspired the General of All Blades to change his politics. Instead of reinforcing the strong discrepancies and inequalities of the many citizens in the Nameless City, the General of All Blades moves forward with Kai’s father’s unprecedented plan for a council to give all that city’s peoples, natives and conquerors alike, a say in its governance and future. Many Dao conservatives, especially Erzi who feels ruling the Nameless City as his birthright, strongly objects to the creation of this council and takes drastic actions to prevent it from happening.  With the Dao Empire suddenly thrown into chaos and with their lives in danger, Kai, Rat, and Kai’s injured father seek refuge among the monks of the Stone Heart, but Erzi finds them soon enough as we learn that he is indirectly being steered by the enigmatic, stealth Mura’s quest for vengeance against the monks. The monks hold a powerful weapon and whoever welds it will seal the fate of the Nameless City. 
  Those who enjoyed the first volume of this series will not be disappointed with this sequel. The plenty of action sequences and plot twists had me turning the pages quickly. There are some lighter moments in the book that balance the darker tones. I appreciated the addition of new characters and I can't wait to learn more about them in the final volume of this graphic novel series. An author's note clears up the confusion regarding the author's inspiration is welcomed and a great addition to the volume.

Rating: 4 stars

Words of Caution: There is some violence in the book, however, most of it take place off the page. Recommended for Grades 6 and up.

If you like this book try: Fullmetal Alchemist series by Hiromu Arakawa and Avatar: The Last Airbender by Gene Luen Yang
2 Responses
  1. Aylee Says:

    I could see myself really liking these books! I enjoyed another book by her (Friends With Boys? I think that was it) and so I think I would enjoy this one even more for its more impactful plot.

  2. I like the sound of this one. I swear I do need to make my cousin pay attention to your reviews. His boys would get a kick out of so many you have brought to my attention!

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