Let’s Cut to the Chase About Tempests and Slaughter

*Received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*

tempests and slaughterOkay, so as I could have predicted for this month, my ARC review is coming a little late- but on the plus side, right now I should be travelling back to London (and to more blogging activity!)

One of the reasons I took so long with this one was because, as you may or may not know, I am a MASSIVE Tamora Pierce fan. Even if I hadn’t been ridiculously excited to receive this as an ARC (which, OMG, I was!!) I would have wanted to do this justice- but I also had more mixed feelings about this one that made me hesitant to put pen to paper.

This didn’t stand out to me as the best Tamora Pierce book- though even “not the best Tamora Pierce book” is still a good shout. What Pierce is famous for, and delivers here, is good, traditional fantasy fare. There’s plenty of adventure to be had and it was above all a lot of FUN- which is exactly what you want from a Middle Grade series opener!

In some ways, it was what I’d come to expect from Pierce- and yet there were also some innovative elements to the world building, which made it stand out from some of her other works. The setting alone added complexity to the story and transformed the tale into a more unique saga. In particular, I loved aspects like the crocodile god and hints at an intricate religious system.

While I did enjoy most of the narrative, I did feel much of it felt more like set up than plot. On the positive side, it made me feel like I’d love later books more- but this particular book felt a little overlong.

One other question mark I had was over the more educational aspect of the book, where Pierce attempted to show male puberty. I felt like this was adequately done, but I will admit the choice of the word “member” was somewhat off-putting and I wondered at the target audience’s response.

Overall though, I liked the characters and bully antagonists. The relationships between characters were well done and the romance, though not swoonworthy, was sweet. I definitely want to pick up the later books in the series and see where it goes!

Rating: 3½/5 bananas

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Have you read this or Pierce’s other works? Do you plan to? Let me know in the comments!

44 thoughts on “Let’s Cut to the Chase About Tempests and Slaughter

  1. I’m ashamed to say that I’ve never read one of Tamora Pierce’s books, even though I’ve repeatedly checked her books out at the library. I grew up with fairy tale & middle grade fantasy books by authors like Gail Carson Levine, Shannon Hale, and E. D. Baker — but not Tamora Pierce! I have a feeling I would love her writing, though, so I’m looking forward to reading a book of hers soon.

    Anyways, great review! Thanks for reminding me to get around to reading Pierce’s books 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ah no worries! Now you mention all those authors I feel like I’ve missed out (though I did read some Hale, I’m not familiar with the others) I really do recommend her books though! I’ve always enjoyed them 😀

      Thank you so much for your comment!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Gail Carson Levine wrote Ella Enchanted, which is hands down my favorite fairy tale/medieval themed book of my childhood. It’s actually a book that I would recommend to people of all ages, just because it’s so timeless & the themes are so wonderful! 😊

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Ah, so glad to see someone else who liked it! I’ve seen so many reviews say it was slow and boring, and I actually thought it was quite interesting! I supposed there’s less fighting than in the other books, but I liked the look inside magical education.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I am NOT a Pierce fan, but Mrs B is. She pretty much owns all her books and I suspect once this series is finished, she’ll snatch them up and devour them.

    Glad to hear you enjoyed this and that you’re headed back. I’m curious what your absence has been all about 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I haven’t read anything by this author, but your review has made me curious in finding out more about this author! It’s great to hear that you are heading back again, and am very much looking forward to your return to the blogging verse 😊😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. YES!! I’m excited to be back!! 😀

      hmm I’m not sure- some of her books are slightly more YA- the main selling point is that most of her books were ahead of the curve in terms of being women-led fantasy books- if that interests you, then I’d definitely say go for the song of the lioness series 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yay! Was there balloons 🎈 and decorations 🎊 and party poppers 🎉 welcoming you home? Did someone make you a cake 🎂? Was there a random taxi driver at an airport with a piece of cardboard that said “Aran Gutan Lye – Barian”?

        Oooh, you know my issues with YA, even though I like the female fronted bit. If the library has it I might take a look 😊

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I’ve read Pierce’s books about Alanna, but that’s all (and it’s been a while). I want to start the Circle of Magic series too, but haven’t gotten to that one yet. Glad to hear you enjoyed this one!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m looking forward to this one too, but I’m trying to keep an open mind to avoid disappointments. Still, I might have a similar reaction to you when I read it. Am currently working my way through Pierce’s books on a rereading quest.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. How have I never read Tamora Pierce before? She sounds amazing! I mean, even “not her best book” is awesome :O
    I’m glad you enjoyed it despite a few things. It does sound really fun and interesting but I probably should try her previous work first? Not sure! But I’ll keep this one in my all the same 🙂
    Wonderful review! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh I definitely recommend her!!
      I do think it’s probably better to start with some of her previous work, just because I think it’s so good! The best place to start is with the Song of the Lioness quartet!
      Thank you so much!


  8. Looking forward to having you back! I’ve never read any Tamora Pierce but I was sent this one recently so I’m interested to try it 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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