Humans created Automae to make their lives easier. Then the Automae, subjugated by the royals, rose up and turned the tables.
Now, after the War of Kinds have put the Automae on the thrones they once served, there are deep seated feelings of hate, revenge, and more, none more so than in Ayla, a human servant rising through the ranks of the Sovereign’s household, wishing to avenge her family’s deaths.
Crier, daughter and heir of the Sovereign, was Made to be Perfect. All was well, before she discovered things that brought into question those closest to her and her own being.
With the growing threats across the land, and the own turmoil within the Sovereign’s house, how can these two different young women save each other, much less find love or save the world?
Thank you to The Fantastic Flying Book Club for including me on the Crier’s War blog tour.
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Published: 1 October 2019
Genre(s): Fantasy/Young Adult/LGBT+
After the War of Kinds ravaged the kingdom of Rabu, the Automae, designed to be the playthings of royals, usurped their owners’ estates and bent the human race to their will.
Now Ayla, a human servant rising in the ranks at the House of the Sovereign, dreams of avenging her family’s death…by killing the sovereign’s daughter, Lady Crier.
Crier was Made to be beautiful, flawless, and to carry on her father’s legacy. But that was before her betrothal to the enigmatic Scyre Kinok, before she discovered her father isn’t the benevolent king she once admired, and most importantly, before she met Ayla.
Now, with growing human unrest across the land, pressures from a foreign queen, and an evil new leader on the rise, Crier and Ayla find there may be only one path to love: war.
Representation: Lesbian POC MC, Bi POC MC, POC cast throughout, SC relationships include m/m & f/f
- Crier’s falling for Ayla. She got it bad, from the moment she met Ayla, and there were a lot of forehead smacking moments because of this instant attraction/interest, but it was also kind of sweet?
- The many forms that Heartstone comes in. It was a little odd at first, figuring out how the Automae “ate”, but their adaptability became very interesting when the many varieties of Heartstone became evident (candied, etc.).
- The way that Varela utilized the points of view of human and Automae. Thinking about how the Automae were initially created and abused by the humans, only to largely turn on them and take up their customs, as seen in Hesod’s dedication to their cultural ways of life and carrying on the ways they treated the Automae under their charge, is horrifying, but makes one wonder about justification. About how the Automae grew to think about what choice they had. About how wrongs committed in the name of justice, even when committed against those who have wrong you don’t necessary make a right. There are so many layers to the atrocities committed by both sides against one another that Ayla and Crier have inherited and are dealing with that make Crier’s War an intense novel.
- The machinations going on throughout, whether it be the Resistance, Scyre Kinok’s, Ayla’s, et al, there’s always some angle that intrigued me and drew me even further into the story.
- There were a couple scenes that were hard to picture, as the words used to describe the scene didn’t really pan out with what those words & the actions of the characters actually seemed to mean.
There a lot of mind bending going on in Crier’s War. The characters are being pulled in multiple ways, questioning a lot about things that they thought were true, and as the reader we are experiencing all of these points of view at once. It’s fantastic but so stressful! I want more! lol
I’d highly recommend this book if you like the enemies to lovers trope, mysterious politics, interesting moral situations, and robots/artificial intelligence leaning stories.
You couldn’t depend on much in this world, but you could depend on this: love brought nothing but death.
Justice was a god, and Ayla didn’t believe in such childish things. She believed in blood.
Looking at her, Crier felt dizzy. Off-balance. This close to the cliff’s edge, she was in danger of falling all over again—it was as if the rush of sea below them was calling out to her, beckoning.
Were there certain words or ideas that made Ayla’s frown smooth out, that made her eyes brighten? Crier wanted to study her like a map. Draw an easy path between all the specific yet scattered points of her.
Lady Crier had secrets. It wasn’t something Ayla would have ever expected, and a big part of her wanted to learn more.
She’d always thought that the most she would be able to do was kill Hesod’s daughter. But what if she could destroy him even more completely? Kill his daughter and burn his kingdom to the ground?
Nina Varela is a nationally awarded writer of screenplays and short fiction. She was born in New Orleans and raised on a hippie commune in Durham, North Carolina, where she spent most of her childhood playing in the Eno River, building faerie houses from moss and bark, and running barefoot through the woods. These days, Nina lives in Los Angeles with her writing partner and their tiny, ill-behaved dog. She tends to write stories about hard-won love and young people toppling the monarchy/patriarchy/whatever-archy. On a related note, she’s queer. On a less related note, she has strong feelings about hushpuppies and loves a good jambalaya. CRIER’S WAR is her first novel.
You can find Nina at any given coffee shop in the greater Los Angeles area, or at www.ninavarela.com.
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