Stormdancer (Lotus War Series #1)
  • Alternative view 1 of Stormdancer (Lotus War Series #1)
  • Alternative view 2 of Stormdancer (Lotus War Series #1)

Stormdancer (Lotus War Series #1)

4.5 75
by Jay Kristoff
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

The first in an epic new fantasy series, introducing an unforgettable new heroine and a stunningly original dystopian steampunk world with a flavor of feudal Japan.

A DYING LAND
The Shima Imperium verges on the brink of environmental collapse; an island nation once rich in tradition and myth, now decimated by clockwork industrialization and the

Overview

The first in an epic new fantasy series, introducing an unforgettable new heroine and a stunningly original dystopian steampunk world with a flavor of feudal Japan.

A DYING LAND
The Shima Imperium verges on the brink of environmental collapse; an island nation once rich in tradition and myth, now decimated by clockwork industrialization and the machine-worshipers of the Lotus Guild. The skies are red as blood, the land is choked with toxic pollution, and the great spirit animals that once roamed its wilds have departed forever.

AN IMPOSSIBLE QUEST
The hunters of Shima's imperial court are charged by their Shogun to capture a thunder tiger – a legendary creature, half-eagle, half-tiger. But any fool knows the beasts have been extinct for more than a century, and the price of failing the Shogun is death.

A HIDDEN GIFT
Yukiko is a child of the Fox clan, possessed of a talent that if discovered, would see her executed by the Lotus Guild. Accompanying her father on the Shogun's hunt, she finds herself stranded: a young woman alone in Shima's last wilderness, with only a furious, crippled thunder tiger for company. Even though she can hear his thoughts, even though she saved his life, all she knows for certain is he'd rather see her dead than help her.

But together, the pair will form an indomitable friendship, and rise to challenge the might of an empire.

Editorial Reviews

Early readers agree that Jay Kristoff's Stormdancer is the most eye-opening genre debut seen in years: "With airships, demons, and lashings of revolutionary swordplay," writes fellow author Scott Westerfeld, "this chi-fueled vision of a steampunk feudal Japan will blow your split-toed socks off." Even those strong words don't capture the full vigor and originality of this dystopian epic fantasy. Its tale of a young woman who is commanded to capture a griffin pits an unlikely pair against oppressive rulers and betrayers on several sides. Chainsaw swords, thunder tigers, and steampunk like you've never imagined it before. Now in trade paperback and NOOK Book.

School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—Set in feudal Japan, Stormdancer is a steampunk fantasy with richly drawn mythical creatures and a tough female protagonist. Yukiko and her father are sent to the hinterlands to capture a Thunder Tiger, which is rumored to exist there. Dogged by disaster from the start, Yukiko fights to take a stand against corrupt political systems and personal betrayal. Along the way, she discovers the truth behind her family history and dreams of redemption for herself, her homeland, and the crippled Griffin, with whom she makes an alliance. While this first book in the series paints a descriptive backdrop, casual readers may find themselves overwhelmed by the sheer volume of original terms and concepts they'll need to digest. The plot is similarly dense, packed full of surprising twists and turns, nonstop action, and intense dialogue. Committed readers will enjoy the original and genre-bending world that the author creates, but it will take time and effort.—Sunnie Sette, New Haven Public Library, CT
Publishers Weekly
Kristoff’s imaginative debut, the first in a series, presents the feudal, dystopian Shima Empire, a menacing Japanese-inspired setting in which “the lotus must bloom” even though it turns all it touches into a toxic wasteland. Blood lotus seeds produce the fuel that powers sky ships, but the plant’s roots render the soil barren, and the fuel’s noxious exhaust fumes slowly poison those too poor to afford mechanized breathing masks. Power lies in the hands of the corrupt, fanatical Lotus Guild and Yoritomo-no-miya, the mad, one-dimensionally evil shogun. During an impossible quest ordered by Yoritomo, 16-year-old Kitsune Yukiko is stranded in the country’s last wilderness with Buruu, a furious griffin maimed by Yukiko’s father. The two band together to survive, facing demons from the underworld and, in an exhilarating climax, the might of the empire itself. The innovative setting, fast-moving plot, vivid descriptions, and thrilling action scenes make this a refreshing addition to the steampunk canon. Agent: Matt Bialer, Sanford J. Greenburger Associates. (Sept.)
From the Publisher

“Kristoff's imaginative debut, the first in a series, presents the feudal, dystopian Shima Empire, a menacing Japanese-inspired setting… The innovative setting, fast-moving plot, vivid descriptions, and thrilling action scenes make this a refreshing addition to the steampunk canon.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Soars higher than the arashitora Kristoff writes about; superb.” —Kirkus, starred review

“With its geisha girls in gas masks and canvas blimps spewing black exhaust as they chug across the sky, Stormdancer paints a vivid picture of a decrepit, steampunk Japan. It's startling to witness a country that so reveres nature presented in such an environmentally compromised position, as it is in the kickoff to Jay Kristoff's "The Lotus War" series. But it's this inventive juxtaposition that makes Stormdancer such a thrilling addition to the increasingly tired yet continuously expanding dystopian scene…. [A] fast-paced, fantastical adventure [that] is sharp as a Shogun's sword.” —The LA Times

“What's that? You say you've got a Japanese Steampunk novel with mythic creatures, civil unrest, and a strong female protagonist? I'm afraid I missed everything you said after "Japanese Steampunk." That's all I really needed to hear.” —Patrick Rothfuss, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Name of the Wind and The Wise Man's Fear

“With airships, demons, and lashings of revolutionary swordplay, this chi-fueled vision of a steampunk feudal Japan will blow your split-toed socks off.” —Scott Westerfeld, New York Times bestselling author of Leviathan

“Jay Kristoff pushes the steampunk genre exactly where it needs to go, away from Victorian London's over-trodden lanes and into the great wide world. With its rocketing action, eccentric and convincing characters, and deep immersion in heroic Japanese culture, Stormdancer slammed my head into an updated vision of the great chanbara films of Kurosawa and Kobayashi. I'll be waiting for more from Mr. Kristoff.” —K.W. Jeter, author of The Kingdom of Shadows

“Set in a complex and richly imagined world, Stormdancer draws on inspirations as widespread as epic fantasy, steampunk, and Japanese mythology, effortlessly piecing them together into an alternate history that is as vibrant as it is disturbing. Yukiko is an admirable heroine, made of compassion and courage, but it's the remarkable friendship forged between Yukiko and the majestic thunder tiger, Buruu, that readers will find truly unforgettable. In this breathtaking debut fantasy, Kristoff has given us an adventure teeming with impossible quests and betrayals, rebellion and murder, jealousy and harbored secrets. I eagerly look forward to seeing where his imagination takes us next.” —Marissa Meyer, New York Times bestselling author of Cinder

“Jay Kristoff's Yukiko and her indomitable thunder tiger's entertaining adventures have just sent steampunk gloriously Asian.” —Stephen Hunt, internationally bestselling author of The Kingdom Beyond the Sea

“Kristoff's debut is a lyrical triumph of chainsaw swords and thunder tigers that steampunk fans and mythology buffs will devour.” —Kevin Hearne, author of The Iron Druid Chronicles

Stormdancer is an intoxicating joyride into steampunklandia with a magical dose of mythology, the supernatural, violence, dystopian themes, and a top-notch brassy heroine who rivals Katniss Everdeen of The Hunger Games. Yes, I did say that!” —Huffington Post

“…the plot takes off when the mythical arashitora (literally ‘stormtiger') forms a strong bond with the heroine, Yukiko. Her relationship with the griffin-like creature is especially poignant in light of the personal losses she reveals as the story unfolds… it's the bonds of family and friendship that feel the truest, with heartwrenching effect.” —Romantic Times

“Japanese Steampunk unafraid to engage with the dark side of the subgenre. The Lotus must bloom!” —SF Signal

“If you enjoy rich detail and sensual writing, you'll dig it…. Bristling with energy and enthusiasm, this is the start of what should be a deservedly popular series.” —Library Journal

“Think Lassie, if Kurosawa had been the director and Lassie had been three tons of angry mythical demon-shredding sass bent on pushing Timmy down the well… A colorful cast of supporting characters and thoughtful plotting add further to Stormdancer's appeal, but, really, Kristoff has the reader at "girl meets griffin." The captivating backdrop, graceful prose and army of mechanized samurai are all just added bonuses.” —Shelf Awareness

“Compelling characters--particularly Yukiko, the Arashitora Buruu, and the artificer Kin--a strong environmental message, and a thrilling battle setting the stage for the sequel. Offer this to fans of Scott Westerfeld's Leviathan trilogy or Philip Reeve's Hungry City Chronicles.” —Booklist

“A steampunk fantasy with richly drawn mythical creatures and a tough female protagonist…. Packed full of surprising twists and turns, nonstop action, and intense dialogue.” —School Library Journal

#1 New York Times bestselling author of The Name o Patrick Rothfuss

What's that? You say you've got a Japanese Steampunk novel with mythic creatures, civil unrest, and a strong female protagonist? I'm afraid I missed everything you said after "Japanese Steampunk." That's all I really needed to hear.
internationally bestselling author of The Kingdom Stephen Hunt

Jay Kristoff's Yukiko and her indomitable thunder tiger's entertaining adventures have just sent steampunk gloriously Asian.
VOYA - Bethany Martin
Yukiko's father is the Black Fox of Shima, the shogun's master hunter. However, the cultivation of Blood Lotus to fuel the empire's technology has left the land desolate and killed most wildlife. After a drug-induced vision, the shogun orders Yukiko, her father, and the other court hunters to find and a capture a thunder tiger, a griffin-like creature that has been extinct for generations. Failure means certain death. Against all odds, the hunters find and capture a thunder tiger, but when their airship crashes, Yukiko finds herself alone with the injured and angry creature. Trying to locate her father, she stumbles across a group of legendary rebels and must face the truth about the shogun's reign. Political intrigue is the strongest element of this steampunk novel set in feudal Japan. Readers will find many parallels with today, including climate change and the rule of the privileged class. Yukiko is a strong female character, willing to both make and take responsibility for her own decisions. Her relationships, particularly with her father, are well developed and will ring true with teens. Maps and a glossary aid in understanding unfamiliar landscapes and vocabulary. This book is the first in a series and will please readers of steampunk and fantasy; it is a good choice for libraries where these genres are popular. Reviewer: Bethany Martin
Kirkus Reviews
Debut author Kristoff's steampunk adventure whisks readers to a Japanese dystopia where some mythological beings still exist, a few people have fantastical gifts, and all people live under tyranny. Yukiko, 16, has an ability the shogun's guild would punish with death: She can commune with animals. In a unique society woven from Japanese culture and history and the author's ingenuity of mechanical invention and disease, living standards are rough; pollution and drug addiction proliferate under the rule of a corrupt shogun who seeks to win an admittedly nebulous war. When he commissions Yukiko's father to catch an elusive arashitora, a creature part-eagle and part-tiger, Yukiko's quest to survive becomes more challenging. Failure to find the arashitora means the end for Yukiko and her father. Indeed, death looms around every corner in this third-person adventure, as Yukiko meets defectors, rebels and others too scared to oppose the shogun. The book takes off in earnest when Yukiko meets an arashitora. She can communicate with it, and girl and beast grow through the bond they form in surprising and thoroughly convincing ways. Ultimately the fearsome pair takes on the regime, but not before Yukiko forays into the wilds of love. Soars higher than the arashitora Kristoff writes about; superb. (Steampunk. 12 & up)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781250017918
Publisher:
St. Martin's Press
Publication date:
09/18/2012
Series:
Lotus War , #1
Sold by:
Macmillan
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
336
Sales rank:
37,650
File size:
2 MB

Read an Excerpt


1
YUKIKO
 
 
As the iron war club scythed toward her head, Yukiko couldn’t help wishing she’d listened to her father.
She rolled aside as her cover was smashed to kindling, azalea petals drifting over the oni’s shoulders like perfumed snowflakes. The demon loomed above her, twelve feet high, all iron-tipped tusks and long, jagged fingernails. Stinking of open graves and burning hair, skin of polished midnight blue, eyes like funeral candles bathing the forest with guttering light. The club in its hands was twice as long as Yukiko was tall. One direct hit, and she would never see the samurai with the sea-green eyes again.
“Well, that’s clever,” she chided herself, “thinking about boys at a time like this.”
A spit-soaked roar pushed her hard in the chest, scattering a cloud of sparrows from the temple ruins at her back. Lightning licked the clouds, bathing the whole scene in fleeting, brilliant white: the endless wilds, the stranded sixteen-year-old girl, and the pit demon poised to cave in her skull.
Yukiko turned and ran.
Trees stretched in every direction, a steaming snarl of roots and undergrowth, stinking of green rot. Branches whipped her face and tore her clothes, rain and sweat slicked her skin. She touched the fox tattoo sleeving her right arm, tracing its nine tails in prayer. The demon behind her bellowed as she slipped away, over root and under branch, deeper into the suffocating heat.
She screamed for her father. For Kasumi or Akihito. For anybody.
And nobody came.
The trees erupted and toppled in front of her, cleft to the heartwood by an enormous ten-span sword. Another oni appeared through the shower of falling green, tombstone mask for a face, lips pierced with rusted iron rings. Yukiko dived sideways as the great sword swept overhead, clipping her braid. Strands of long, black hair drifted down to the dead leaves.
She was rolling to her feet when the oni snatched her up, quicker than flies, its awful grip making her cry out. She could read the blasphemous kanji symbols carved on its necklace, feel the heat gleaming from its flesh. The first oni arrived, bellowing in delight. Her captor opened its jaws, a black maggot tongue lolling between its teeth.
She drew her tanto and stabbed the demon’s hand, burying six inches of folded steel to the hilt. Blood sprayed, black and boiling where it touched her skin. The oni roared and hurled her against a nearby cedar. Her skull cracked against the trunk and she crashed earthward, rag-doll limp, the bloody knife skittering from her grip. Darkness reached up to smother her and she desperately clawed it away.
Not like this.
The first demon’s laughter reminded her of screaming children, burning on Guild pyres in the Market Square. Its wounded comrade growled in a dark, backward tongue, stalking forward and raising its sword to end her. Lightning glinted on the blade’s edge, time slowing to a crawl as the blow began to fall. Yukiko thought of her father again, wishing for all the world she’d done what she’d been told for just once in her life.
Thunder cracked overhead. A white shape burst from the undergrowth and landed on the oni’s back; a flurry of razors, broken blue sparks and beating wings. The demon shrieked as the beast tore into its shoulders, ripping mouthfuls of flesh with a blood-slick beak.
The first oni growled, swinging its war club in a broad, hissing arc. Their attacker sprang into the air, tiny whirlwinds of falling leaves and snow-white petals dancing in time to the thrashing of its wings. The demon’s tetsubo slammed across its comrade’s shoulders. Bone splintered under the war club’s impact, the oni’s spine shattering like dark, wet glass. It crumpled to the ground, its last breath spattered in steaming black across Yukiko’s terrified face.
The beast landed off-balance, digging bloodstained claws into the earth.
The oni glanced at its companion’s corpse, shifting the war club from one hand to the other. Howling a challenge, it lifted the weapon and charged. The pair collided, beast and demon, crashing earthward and tumbling about in a flurry of feathers, petals and screams.
Yukiko wiped at the sticky black in her eyes, tried to blink away her concussion. She could make out blurry shapes rolling in the fallen leaves, dark splashes staining the white azalea blossoms. She heard a crunch, a choking gurgle, and then a vast, empty silence.
She blinked into the gloom, pulse throbbing behind her eyes.
The beast emerged from the shadows, feathers stained black with blood. It stalked toward her and lowered its head, growl building in its throat. Yukiko groped toward her tanto, pawing through the muck and sodden leaves for the blade as her eyesight dimmed. The darkness beckoned, arms open wide, promising an end to all of her fear. To be with her brother again. To leave this dying island and its poisoned sky behind. To lie down and finally sleep after a decade of hiding who and what she was.
She closed her eyes and wished she were safe and warm at home, nestled in her blankets, the air tinged blue-black with the smoke from her father’s pipe. The beast opened its beak and roared, a hurricane scream swallowing the light and memories.
Darkness fell completely.

 
Copyright © 2012 by Jay Kristoff

Meet the Author

JAY KRISTOFF grew up in the most isolated capital city on earth and fled at his earliest convenience, although he's been known to trek back for weddings of the particularly nice and funerals of the particularly wealthy. Being the holder of an Arts degree, he has no education to speak of. He is the award-winning author of THE ILLUMINAE FILES and THE GODSGRAVE CHRONICLES, among other tiles.

He is 6'7 and has approximately 13,870 days to live. He lives in Melbourne with his wife, and the world's laziest Jack Russell Terrier.


JAY KRISTOFF is the author of Stormdancer. He grew up in the most isolated capital city on earth and fled at his earliest convenience, although he's been known to trek back for weddings of the particularly nice and funerals of the particularly wealthy. Being the holder of an arts degree, he has no education to speak of. He is six feet seven inches and has approximately 13,520 days to live. He lives in Melbourne with his wife and the world's laziest Jack Russell Terrier.
JAY KRISTOFF is the author of Stormdancer. He grew up in the most isolated capital city on earth and fled at his earliest convenience, although he’s been known to trek back for weddings of the particularly nice and funerals of the particularly wealthy. Being the holder of an arts degree, he has no education to speak of. He is six feet seven inches and has approximately 13,520 days to live. He lives in Melbourne with his wife and the world’s laziest Jack Russell Terrier.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >

Stormdancer 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 75 reviews.
shayana More than 1 year ago
There have been only a few times that I have been rendered speechless in my life with not even a single coherent thought passing through my head. This is one of those moments. When I finished the last page of the book I was numb – numb from realization that I did not have any more to read of this wonderful, this magnificent piece of book called Stormdancer. I want more. I knew this book would have been amazing… look at the cover, look at the blurb, look at the fact that it is a Japanese Steampunk featuring Thunder Tigers and Chainsaw Katanas – but the enormity of its amazingness blew me away. It was like reading a manga in text – the world was that vivid, the book was that action packed, the mythology was that enthralling, the characters that compelling – I can find no better praise to give a fantasy novel. I am in awe. Literally. This book made me feel so many emotions at once I was like a ferris wheel rotating while running in full speed over a rollercoaster. I laughing hard at the dialogues one moment (Yes, Jay you are one witty man) and then slack-jawed the next. I cried while reading this book… (view spoiler) I loved the narrative with alternating viewpoints. I loved the way the action sequences were described – smoothly and kickass-ly. There were no vague gestures and no underscoring the attacks – they were there in all the gory and not-so-gory details. But the best part of Jay’s writing was the show and tell method – the information about the world, the beasts, the myths, the characters – they were written flawlessly that I did not feel either information overload or the lack of proper explanations. I was really glad that the romance was downplayed (really downplayed) and the heroine had her priorities straight. Saving the world with her great Thunder Tiger first; fantasies of the samurai with the blue-green eyes later. Hands down, Yukiko was an amazing protagonist – beautiful, sarcastic, kickass, brave, kickass, smart, kickass and for extra emphasis kickass again. I can count in my single hand the YA protagonists who didn’t make me feel like my brain cells were dying just by the realization that I was also a teenage girl like them. I didn’t even roll my eyes at Yukiko’s actions even once, I didn’t even want to. The girl got my respect. As did Buuru. Buuru was the soul of this book. I was thinking HOLY FRICKIN’ HELL I WANT A PET GRIFFIN! He was that awesome. The way he slowly warmed up to Yukiko and got ready to fight the battles together was amazing! Heck, everything about Stormdancer was amazing!! The Oni were creepy. The Lotusmen were creepier. Kin was adorable. Hiro was…there. Amaterasu, Izanami, Izanagi, Susano-¿, Tsukiyomi reminded me of Itachi Uchiha (who, in my, opinion is the greatest manga character of all time). The mythical world was fresh and interesting. The legends of the past Stormdancers and the stories of the long ago Gods were captivating. I would love to elaborate more about every frigging part of the book but honestly, I am running out of positive adjectives. I’m still stuck in the fact that it is over... and I don’t have the sequel yet! Stormdancer is not just a book, it is THE book. THE book that breaks all the clichés in YA and gives us a fresh story to read. THE book with the storyline and fantasy that has not been recycled, reused, raped and printed by countless books before it. THE book with a heroine who knows what she’s doing, why she’s doing it and her reasons actually makes sense. THE book with a best friend who is not only a friggin’ Thunder Tiger but also witty, sarcastic and loyal. THE book with Chainsaw Katanas. Seriously? What other reasons you need to read this book? 5 Stars! No doubt about it!!There have been only a few times that I have been rendered speechless in my life with not even a single coherent thought passing through my head. This is one of those moments. When I finished the last page of the book I was numb – numb from realization that I did not have any more to read of this wonderful, this magnificent piece of book called Stormdancer. I want more. I knew this book would have been amazing… look at the cover, look at the blurb, look at the fact that it is a Japanese Steampunk featuring Thunder Tigers and Chainsaw Katanas – but the enormity of its amazingness blew me away. It was like reading a manga in text – the world was that vivid, the book was that action packed, the mythology was that enthralling, the characters that compelling – I can find no better praise to give a fantasy novel. I am in awe. Literally. This book made me feel so many emotions at once I was like a ferris wheel rotating while running in full speed over a rollercoaster. I laughing hard at the dialogues one moment (Yes, Jay you are one witty man) and then slack-jawed the next. I cried while reading this book… I loved the narrative with alternating viewpoints. I loved the way the action sequences were described – smoothly and kickass-ly. There were no vague gestures and no underscoring the attacks – they were there in all the gory and not-so-gory details. But the best part of Jay’s writing was the show and tell method – the information about the world, the beasts, the myths, the characters – they were written flawlessly that I did not feel either information overload or the lack of proper explanations. I was really glad that the romance was downplayed (really downplayed) and the heroine had her priorities straight. Saving the world with her great Thunder Tiger first; fantasies of the samurai with the blue-green eyes later. Hands down, Yukiko was an amazing protagonist – beautiful, sarcastic, kickass, brave, kickass, smart, kickass and for extra emphasis kickass again. I can count in my single hand the YA protagonists who didn’t make me feel like my brain cells were dying just by the realization that I was also a teenage girl like them. I didn’t even roll my eyes at Yukiko’s actions even once, I didn’t even want to. The girl got my respect. As did Buuru. Buuru was the soul of this book. I was thinking HOLY FRICKIN’ HELL I WANT A PET GRIFFIN! He was that awesome. The way he slowly warmed up to Yukiko and got ready to fight the battles together was amazing! Heck, everything about Stormdancer was amazing!! The Oni were creepy. The Lotusmen were creepier. Kin was adorable. Hiro was…there. Amaterasu, Izanami, Izanagi, Susano-¿, Tsukiyomi reminded me of Itachi Uchiha (who, in my, opinion is the greatest manga character of all time). The mythical world was fresh and interesting. The legends of the past Stormdancers and the stories of the long ago Gods were captivating. I would love to elaborate more about every frigging part of the book but honestly, I am running out of positive adjectives. I’m still stuck in the fact that it is over... and I don’t have the sequel yet! Stormdancer is not just a book, it is THE book. THE book that breaks all the clichés in YA and gives us a fresh story to read. THE book with the storyline and fantasy that has not been recycled, reused, raped and printed by countless books before it. THE book with a heroine who knows what she’s doing, why she’s doing it and her reasons actually makes sense. THE book with a best friend who is not only a friggin’ Thunder Tiger but also witty, sarcastic and loyal. THE book with Chainsaw Katanas. Seriously? What other reasons you need to read this book? 5 Stars! No doubt about it!!
TouyaSan More than 1 year ago
Shima is a perfect steampunk dynasty. It was so vividly painted that it was more like watching a movie that reading a book. The words left nothing lacking in it’s tapestry. Yukiko is a beautiful girl. Not in physical beauty because the labor of the world has hidden that away, but in ideal. She cares for what others would abandon or turn a blind eye and that is one of her greatest strengths. She’s slightly naïve in the beginning; she understands yet doesn’t really understand the matters at play that move her world. Her growth is one of the best ever written. Buruu is special. He completes Yukiko. His reason, and sometimes lack thereof tempers her weaknesses and at times strengthens her as well. In the beginning Buruu didn’t need her and acted that way, but with all things, there’s a gradual understanding that grows into a beautiful love. The story is quick paced. There’s never a page where something isn’t happening that isn’t important to the story. Every word has meaning and it’s written so well, that the plot doesn’t lead the reader by the nose. It unfolds rather beautifully and smoothly. Overall, this book was superb. This was a perfect blend of history, mythology and steampunk ever experienced. There is certainly nothing like this and there’s no justifiable way to describe the perfection that is this unique story. A recommend read for all fantasy, YA, Steampunk, Japanese, and Mythology readers. In any or no combination. ^_^
Cupcakegirly More than 1 year ago
I was really excited to read this and hoped it would live up to the hype - and IT.DID! Stormdancer begins with a gorgeous cover and continues with fantastic characters who take you on a spellbinding journey of love, sacrifice and hope that left me in tears. (Ugly-cry sobbing is more like it.) This story sucked me in right away and Jay Kristoff is a master worldbuilder. He transports the reader right into a Japan on the brink of war by painting such vivid pictures through sights, sounds and smells. (I kept catching myself covering my face, as if I could actually smell the stench.) The relationship between Yukiko and Buruu is honest and heart-aching in it's tenderness and left me wishing for a Buruu of my own. (Are you listening Santa?) Yukiko is definitely out numbered by men and Kin and Hiro are just two who find themselves rotating in her orbit. One is quiet and determined while the other is a fierce warrior. Both are loyal in their dedication and it's that loyalty that might just be their undoing. Yukiko does every girl proud with her strength, beauty and stubbornness. She doesn't do anything half way, whether it's fighting for what she believes in or loving those around her. She makes a few mistakes and learns some tough lessons about love and friendship but it's not until she suffers a gut wrenching betrayal that she learns the true meaning of sacrifice. The Lotus Wars has only just begun and I can't wait to see what happens next!
ClaireFrith More than 1 year ago
Yukiko is a 16 year old girl, belonging to the Kitsune clan. Her father is the Hunt Master, and they are off on a journey to capture a thunder tiger - a beast of legend, extinct long ago. Extinct, however, it seems not. They capture the tiger before crashing their airship. Now Yukiko is separated by her father and stuck with the thunder tiger, a bond between them forming. Stormdancer is a novel filled with vivid detail and dazzling descriptions. This novel took me longer than I would usually would to read. I was overwhelmed by the amount of detailed description, and took my time reading slowly and carefully, savouring every word. I constantly stopped and imagined Yukiko's world, and when I came across a word I didn't know or something I couldn't imagine, I would look it up before I continued. Yukiko was a strong character, a brave girl admist all the evil. Buruu, the thunder tiger, was my favourite of the characters, smart and witty. There are many other characters in this novel, their personalities suitably fitting each of them. The plot-line of this story really drew me in. I felt like I was right beside the characters all the time. Stormdancer has a little bit of everything - fantasy, romance, action, betrayal, murder and so much more. I am glad there is going to be more than one book, because I am definitely wanting more of this world to come alive.
AmieKaufman More than 1 year ago
A book like this only comes along once in a very long while. Incredibly rich worldbuilding, a cast of characters that will stay with you long after you're finished and action on an epic scale come together to create a truly unique book I'll never forget. If you prefer your stories quick and simple, this isn't the book for you. Jay Kristoff weaves a world with layer upon layer of detail, drawing on Japanese history, myth and legend, steampunk elements, political intrigue and a healthy dose of fantasy. The result is spectacular. Yukiko is a gutsy, realistic teenaged protagonist, surrounded by a cast of characters who each deserve their own book. I'm looking forward to seeing some in the sequel, and starting a campaign now for some prequel novellas featuring the adventures of Masaru and co. before the story proper opens. Buruu, the thunder tiger, has some of the best lines of the book, and is a triumph all of his own. The plot is a rich combination of action and politics, and in a book where nobody's safe (warning: I cried more than once), the story picks you up and relentlessly carries you onward. The word 'epic' is overused these days, but Stormdancer is epic in every sense of the word.
VysBlog More than 1 year ago
It only took two pages before I knew that I would be highly enjoying this book. THE WORLD  Stormdancer is described as a "Japanese inspired steampunk fantasy", so I was already mentally preparing myself for the world of Stormdancer. It took me a bit before I fully took it all in, but it was incredible how vivid the setting was. There are people dying along with their land and the growth of the Lotus that is poisoning everyone. There are also creatures such as griffins hiding out in the land. GRIFFINS, PEOPLE. GRIFFINS. THE CHARACTERS Let's start with the super awesome Yukiko. She is skilled in fighting, can communicate with animals, and goes on hunting trips for the Shogun. Yukiko starts off as an angsty 16 year old and transforms into this fierce heroine. Buruu, the griffin, is my favorite character along with Yukiko. He develops from an almost barbaric animal with his thirst for killing into a complex, human-like creature. Buruu slowly builds a sense of sarcasm, and a great personality. OVERALL There were moments when the story was a bit slow, especially when things were being introduced and explained, but the story held my attention the whole time. Stormdancer was constantly entertaining with the writing, characters, and setting. I will most definitely be reading more of mister Kristoff's work.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I hope the author can maintain the exotic originality of the settings and characters. Minor quibble with japanese language use (a *Samisen* is held and played very much like a guitar, plus it only has 3 strings) the instrument that the author describes being played in the royal "living quarters" is most likely a *Koto* a long, thirteen string floor harp. Plus as already mentioned incorrect usage of the honorific "Sama".
Anonymous 4 months ago
It sucks
Anonymous 9 months ago
Excellent read. I loved every page. I'll for sure be buying the sequal.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I haven't read a book so ingrained with such a creative culture borrowed from our times until today. This book is Amazing. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND YOU READ IT.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
LaminaDeLaNocte More than 1 year ago
Japanese, Steampunk, mythical creatures. I loved the uniqueness of this book. I will certainly be moving on to book 2. :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This novel wasn't what I expected. I liked the plot and the main characters but struggled to get into the novel. It was interesting!
shortcircuit More than 1 year ago
so good can,t wait for book 2
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Alright, this book promises to be a lot of things (a Japanese steampunk novel laced with fantasy/mythological roots?!!!), and I am happy to report it delivers on all of them. This book is REALLY slow in the beginning, there's going to be a lot of world building for the 1st half of the book. I'm fairly positive most people are with me when I say the author spends a bit too much time on descriptions. HOWEVER, just stick with it and I promise it will deliver a great adventure story. Once I really got into the main plot I was addicted. It's an amazing and inventive story, I mean it's got a little bit of everything in here (adventure, espionage, romance, friendship, betrayal, ect.). It's one of the story's that has you racing to grab the next book in the series. Definitely worth the time!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Well well little one.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
AWSOME! Thnx :3. P.s snowfrost you have a stepdad in my den, but dont go in there. Once we are fully mates ill bring him out and announce itto the rest of the clan.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Yeah.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
How oute res six
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Name: Mistypaw Gender: Shecat Personality: usually calm, somewhat timid. Age: 7 moons Appearance: small cat with silver fur and blue eyes. Mate/crush/kits: im only a young apprentice, no i dont have any of these If i forgot anything, you can say so, i havent done a bio in quite a while
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Name; moonflower. <br> Gender: she-cat <br> Personality: meet me <br> Appearence: white-gray pelt th a hite underbellt and four white paws and tail tip. Blue eyes. <br> Likes: friends, music, mouse, hunting, etc. <br> Dislikes: annoying rpers unless randomness rp, wifi that dont work. <br> Crush: no <br> Mate: no <br> Kits: no <br> Song: Radioactive by Imagine Dragons
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Moons old 15. Red eyes black fur.