by Malinda Lo


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Huntress by Malinda Lo

Nature is out of balance in the human world. The sun hasn't shone in years, and crops are failing. Worse yet, strange and hostile creatures have begun to appear. The people's survival hangs in the balance.

To solve the crisis, the oracle stones are cast, and Kaede and Taisin, two seventeen-year-old girls, are picked to go on a dangerous and unheard-of journey to Tanlili, the city of the Fairy Queen. Taisin is a sage, thrumming with magic, and Kaede is of the earth, without a speck of the otherworldly. And yet the two girls' destinies are drawn together during the mission. As members of their party succumb to unearthly attacks and fairy tricks, the two come to rely on each other and even begin to fall in love. But the Kingdom needs only one huntress to save it, and what it takes could tear Kaede and Taisin apart forever.

The exciting adventure prequel to Malinda Lo's highly acclaimed novel Ash is overflowing with lush Chinese influences and details inspired by the I Ching, and is filled with action and romance.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780316040075
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication date: 04/05/2011
Pages: 384
Product dimensions: 5.30(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.40(d)
Lexile: 860L (what's this?)
Age Range: 15 - 18 Years

About the Author

Malinda is the former managing editor of, and an award-winning journalist for her work in LGBT media. Malinda graduated from Wellesley College in 1996 with a BA in Economics and Chinese Studies, and she worked with Joe Blades at Ballantine. She earned MAs from Harvard (Regional Studies—East Asia) and Stanford (Cultural and Social Anthropology) universities. She now lives in San Francisco.

Read an Excerpt


By Lo, Malinda

Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Copyright © 2011 Lo, Malinda
All right reserved.

ISBN: 9780316040075


Huntress is set in the same world as Ash, but it takes place many centuries earlier. There are some significant cultural differences between the time periods.


Clouds and thunder arise: The sage brings order. Those who chase deer without a hunter Lose their way in the Wood.

Book of Changes

Chapter I

She saw a beach made of ice, and she felt her heart breaking.

The ground where she stood was frozen white, but twenty feet away, cold blue ocean lapped at the jagged shore. Someone there was climbing into a rowboat, and she knew that she loved this person. She was certain of it in the same way that one is instantly aware of the taste of sweetness in a drop of honey. But she was afraid for this person’s life, and the fear raised a cold sweat on her skin and caused a sick lurch in her stomach, as though she were on a ship during a violent storm.

She opened her mouth to call the rower back—she couldn’t bear the loss; it would surely cripple her—and at that moment she realized she could hear nothing. All around her was an eerie, unnatural silence. There was no sound from the ocean. She could not even hear herself breathing. She felt her tongue shaping the syllables of the person’s name, but she did not recognize what the name was until the rower turned to face her. Kaede.

The rower was Kaede, and she looked back with dark, troubled eyes. Loose strands of black hair whipped around her pale face; there were spots of red on her wind-roughened cheeks. Her lips parted as though she would speak. But then Kaede reached down into the boat and lifted out a long oar, dipping it into the azure sea to propel the small craft away from the shore. The droplets of water falling from the blade of the oar were tiny stars, extinguished as quickly as they burned into being. The boat cut through the water, leaving the shore behind, and just before the destination came into view, the vision ended.

She was wrenched out of the icy landscape and back into her body, where she was sitting in the empty practice hall, alone on her cushion.

She opened her eyes, blinking against the light of the single candle she had lit on the altar. Her heart was pounding, and there was an acrid taste in her mouth. Her hands, folded in her lap, were trembling and chilled. A trickle of sweat ran from her temple down her cheek.

She drew her knees up and hugged them close, burying her face in the crook of her elbow, and because there was no one to hear her, she let out the sob that reared up in her throat. The sound echoed in the vaulted ceiling of the practice room, and for once she gave in to the overwhelming feelings rushing through her. She felt gutted. She felt powerless.

She had never seen so clearly before, and her teachers would praise her for it. But she felt no satisfaction, for she could not rejoice in the vision of someone she apparently loved departing on a journey to her death.


Excerpted from Huntress by Lo, Malinda Copyright © 2011 by Lo, Malinda. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Huntress 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 43 reviews.
pagese More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed Lo's debut book Ash. So, when I saw this one, I knew I had to read it. I knew it was a prequel, and I was excited to step back in the world that had been created. The time frame is a bit odd. I don't think I was able to every pinpoint exactly when this story was taking place in regards to events in Ash. It was just safe to assume, it was a number of years (if not centuries) before. The world felt the same though. Only we learn that they fey don't have much of a presence in the human world. They're a legend told that no one is really sure to believe. Until an invitation comes from the Fairy Queen that the human King can not ignore. Enter in Kaede and Taisin. What's funny, is these to girls actually reminded me a lot of Ash and Kaisa. I wish we actually learned more of Taisin. She seems like a very powerful girl who is just learning how to harness her powers. Because of this, I think we as the readers are never fully able to understand what she can do. She's quiet, but the Fey especially never underestimate her. I also liked Kaede. I don't think she fully understand herself. All she knows, is that she refuses to be a pawn in her father's political schemes. She doesn't want to accept the role presented to her. Which was another point of the story I found interesting. Typical female/male roles aren't really seen. The guards sent on the mission aren't all male, the cook is male instead of female, the prince is in love with the guard. And most important, marriages aren't always arranged between males and females. It's just the way of the world. I actually found the story to be slow moving but beautifully constructed. We spend half the book journeying to the Fairy Queen's castle. The descriptions of the journey, the woods, and the Fairy city itself was great. But, I had a really hard time changing pace when we reached this point. All of a sudden we're off on an assassination mission to the ice island. Which is the source of all that is off in both the human and the fairy worlds. And then we're back in the fairy city, but things have gone from bad to worse and we need to go hunt down a unicorn. It was way to fast after the slow build up. But, I really enjoyed how Kaede's involvement is what lead to the creation of the Fairy Queen's Huntress. She was the first. I'm curious to see if the story can continue from here. I would like to see what happens to Kaede and she becomes the hunterss. It seems she's had to give up a lot to get there. Which brings us to the last point. Lo is know for the LGBT tone in her novels, and this is no exception. It doesn't feel out of place at all, but almost like a point she's trying to make. That the herione of the story doesn't need to fall in the love with the prince to make a picture perfect ending. And, I'm totally ok with that!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read madeline lo's first book ash and instantly fell in love with her work. This book did mot dissappoint it really kept me really into the story. I love how descriptive the settings were i really felt like i was traveling in the forest. Great book will recommend it to anyone!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
malinda's writing is engaging and very beautiful. the romance isn't hasty, (a pet peeve of mine) but rather set at a gradual, believable pace. i preferred her debut ASH (set in the same world at a different time) but HUNTRESS was a great read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am obsesed with this book. Everytime my parents say to stop, I always have trouble. Every page is so fruitful. Therfore I gave it a 5 star
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed the world that Lo created in this book. This is the first I have read of hers and it was definitely a light read, meaning.. not heavy on nonsense to fill the pages; however, I was left with a feeling of peices missing to a puzzle. I loved the soft romance between the two girls and Lo kept it to a PG rating but I again was left with the feeling that there should have been a tad bit more. She came up with fantastic ideas but only seemed to touch them at arms reach with a feather. The ending was the most dissappointing to me. It felt like the author was rushed or frustrated and just wanted to wrap things up and pump the book out. It saddened me because it was truely a fantastic journey... it all just needed a little bit more potatoes with the meat if you kniw what I mean ;). With everything said, I would recommend you give the sample a go and see how you feel about it. It will more than likely suck you in to its captivating world.
Katie_breathofbooks More than 1 year ago
This book has a different POV than any I've ever really read before. A lot of what I read is 1st person, but I have read other 3rd person books and this is in 3rd person. The ones that I've read before, though, have usually shown one character's POV in the whole book or in different sections, while this book changed POVs from paragraph to paragraph. This was interesting because I got to be in the heads of lots of characters. Also, the sexual tension between Kaede and Taisin was very strong throughout the book. It quickly became clear that the feelings they had were mutual, but neither would admit it for a long time, and I was just waiting for them to finally kiss. I shipped this ship a lot.
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wordforteens More than 1 year ago
Before reading Huntress, I hadn't read Ash. I've wanted to - I still do - but since this was a prequel, I knew I didn't have to, so I dove right into it without any idea of the world or the story or the writing style. For some strange reason, I wasn't expecting much out of Huntress - yes, it sounded good, but I expected it to be one of those books I read and then forget about a week later. It's not the most fantastic read, but the characters are going to cling to my brain a lot longer than I anticipated. I'll be the first to admit that, as pretty as Malinda Lo's writing is, I'm not a huge fan. Do I love the description? Yes. Did I think she can plot well and really get inside a character's head? Of course. But I'm one of those people who needs their narrator to stick to one type of narration. I don't mind being in two characters heads - I loved learning about both Kaede and Taisin; like I said, the characters are going to stick with me for a while. But every now and then we'd get a few lines in some other characters head, or we'd get to see something they didn't see, and as interesting as it was, it irked me a little bit. I didn't need to see those things, and for a few lines I was sucked out of the story. That's my biggest complaint with the story, though. It moved rather quickly - no lingering on tons of camping scenes or on extraneous details - and I loved the way the plot was set up. I'm very picky with people who can see the future, but I thought it was handled extraordinary well in this particular story. And the characters! I loved them. Each was well rounded - there were no perfect characters, and even the villains had their reasons for doing what they did. I thought the romance between Kaede and Taisin was adorable and very well handled; I liked their romance as much, maybe more, than some of the other stories I've read lately. (And no, I don't mind that I'm a straight girl reading about two girls falling in love. It worked for this story. Love is love.)
lois_must_die More than 1 year ago
I read Ash from Malinda Lo and this book came as a recommendation after. What a great recommendation!!! I love Lo's style of writing. I love the idea of setting gay relationships in another era. These two books are completely different from most lesbian books and the writing is much better. I honestly recommend them to anyone even slightly interested in lesbian books or even fantasy books. I'm excited to read both books again.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you have read Ash, the first book by this author, I would definitely read Huntress. In my opinion, her writing style grew so much. You get to see into all the characters. I love her choice of descriptive words. They really moved me. The story gets right into the problem and throws you right in.
FireStarBooks More than 1 year ago
First of all, 3rd POV! WOOT! LOVE LOVE LOVE! The cover reminded me of a Japanese Mulan. Also I ADORED how every chapter, the first letter is intricately decorated. The map is beautifully drawn with great details but was also the simplest map I have seen. All the other maps I've seen always confuses me but this one actually made sense! :) WOOT! This book started out great because of how the parts were separated by a quote from The Book of Change. This totally reminded me of The Relic Masters series (and I LOVED that series) so Huntress had a fantastic start. If you love The Seven Realm series and the Grey Wolf Throne series, you will love this. I love the writing style of Malinda. The words just form in such poetic way. It is so magical and captivating. The story is magical and mystical. The words seem to hypnotize me and dragging me deeper into the book. The world building is just amazing. I love how this book ultimately is a fantasy adventure book but there just a hint of romance. I think these types of book are my all-time favorites. It totally reminded me why I love the fantasy genre. The chapters are divided into little chunks that I adore. When I read, I read in small chunks. The mystery of the whole thing keeps you within the book. The creatures are like the Spiderwick Chronicles. The weirdness like the experiments from Fullmetal Alchemists. I love the Chinese and Japanese traditions in the book. I love the development of the characters. Taisin, and Kaede's relationship grows at a sweet gentle pace. I wish all romances in books can develop so nicely. Most books just rush at the romance but leave everything else hanging. This book is just perfection. Taisin and Kaede's personalities are different but they cohere together very well. They are like a pair of duel blades, together in harmony, one without the other. Shae, Con, Tali, and Pol were well developed. Shae and Con were strong and intelligent, and I ship them! They looked so cute together, a prince and a king's guard. <3333 OTP! I get the feelings while reading this book. Yes, those! It is similar to the ones when I watch FMA/ FMA:B. *shivers* The one thing that stopped me from giving this a 5 out of 5 is because there were parts that I didn't like reading some parts. It was weird because moments ago I loved the story then I was bored. Those parts reminded me of the Iron King by Julie Kagawa (which I only thought was an okay book).
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Malinda Lo has become an even better writer than before. Beautifully written and wonderfully romantic. Ash was fantastic, The Huntress blows it away.
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Decided to pick this up after someone suggested it and im very glad i did. I couldnt put it down once i started reading.
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