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Publishers WeeklyStarred Review.
Chang Ai Li flees her wedding and her enraged bridegroom in Lin's exciting debut, an adventure tale set in turbulent 8th-century China. Ai Li, the only daughter in a family of mighty warriors, is trained by her grandmother to fight with light butterfly swords and defend herself and her family's honor. Ryam is a foreigner trying to get back to his stronghold on the far western edge of the empire. After he helps Ai Li fight off brigands and soldiers, she hires him to help her evade her pursuers and get back to the imperial city. Ryam is uncomfortable when Ai Li calls him honorable, while she is amazed that he listens to what she has to say. Despite being from different cultures and classes, they fall in love. The especially vibrant writing describing the culture, clothes, and countryside saves this from being just another tale of impossible love.
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