Book: Six Crimson Cranes (Six Crimson Cranes 1) by Elizabeth Lim
Release Date: July 6th 2021
Tags: Young Adult Fantasy | Fairytale Retelling | Dragons | Cranes | Mythology
Trigger/Content Warnings: Kidnapping | Animal Death | Murder | Self-Harm | Body Horror
Other books in this series I reviewed
Spin the Dawn | Unravel the Dusk
Shiori, the only princess of Kiata, has a secret. Forbidden magic runs through her veins. Normally she conceals it well, but on the morning of her betrothal ceremony, Shiori loses control. At first, her mistake seems like a stroke of luck, forestalling the wedding she never wanted, but it also catches the attention of Raikama, her stepmother.
Raikama has dark magic of her own, and she banishes the young princess, turning her brothers into cranes, and warning Shiori that she must speak of it to no one: for with every word that escapes her lips, one of her brothers will die.
Penniless, voiceless, and alone, Shiori searches for her brothers, and, on her journey, uncovers a conspiracy to overtake the throne—a conspiracy more twisted and deceitful, more cunning and complex, than even Raikama’s betrayal. Only Shiori can set the kingdom to rights, but to do so she must place her trust in the very boy she fought so hard not to marry. And she must embrace the magic she’s been taught all her life to contain—no matter what it costs her.
I enjoyed Elizabeth Lim’s previous duology but I did have some eh’s at the last installment. So I was a bit hesitant to pick up a next book. But Six Crimson Cranes felt a lot better in some ways.
Shiori is barely 16 and it shows in her behaviour. A spoiled princess that has always been able to do what she likes and be impulsive. It is what ends up getting her into the situation of drawing the attention of those she shouldn’t have. But she wasn’t unlikeable. Just young, and naive in a way. When she gets send away with the ‘curse’ of her stepmother and her brothers being turned into cranes, she learns to work and how the other half lives. I hope she’ll remember that. She had to grow up quickly. And while her impulsive nature didn’t completely go away she did think a lot of things more through. A bit more grown-up.
Takkan was a lovely character but his love for Shiori was a bit much in that short of a time I felt. Becase of the curse they couldn’t truly see each other. But I guess its because they are young and they know they are promised to each other.
As for the story I was pleased to see that Shiori started thinking about her stepmother on her own. About her reasons. And of course it was obvious what the ‘twist’ would be but I still liked how it was done.