Emi is the kamigakari. In a few short months, her life as a mortal will end and her new existence as the human host of a goddess will begin. Carefully hidden from those who would destroy her, she has prepared her mind, body, and soul to unite with the goddess—and not once has she doubted her chosen fate.
Shiro is a yokai, a spirit of the earth, an enemy of the goddess Emi will soon host. Mystery shrouds his every move and his ruby eyes shine with cunning she can’t match and dares not trust. But she saved his life, and until his debt is paid, he is hers to command—whether she wants him or not.
On the day they meet, everything Emi believes comes undone, swept away like snow upon the winter wind. For the first time, she wants to change her fate—but how can she erase a destiny already wrought in stone? Against the power of the gods, Shiro is her only hope … and hope is all she has left.
About the Author
Annette lives in the frozen winter wasteland of northern Alberta, Canada (okay, it's not quite that bad). She shares her life with her remarkably patient, comparatively sensible husband and their furry minion of darkness-sorry, cat-Caesar. When not writing, she can be found elbow-deep in one art project or another while blissfully ignoring all adult responsibilities.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Ms Marie has done it again with another outstanding series that had me hooked and begging for more. I loved everything about this book – the pacing, the characters, the world building, and the plot. I was left feeling exhausted after such an emotional rollercoaster ride. To be honest, I still have a book hangover. If you love beautifully crafted fantasy with plenty of action, suspense, plot twists and a touch of romance, than this is the book for you! I can’t wait to see where Ms Marie takes this story and what happens next! And what a beautiful cover and gorgeous illustrations!
The beautiful cover of this book was what had me originally wanting to review it and I'm so glad it captured my attention. I especially loved that the author explained the Japanese words and myths. It made for a much more enjoyable read. This is the first book I've read by this author and definitely not the last. This book has magic, romance, and a lot of action. Though it started out a bit slow once it got moving, I was unable to put it down till I'd read it all. Emi is a strong, single-minded character that while being a bit naive was still very fascinating. I can't wait to see what Marie does with the next two books.
When Emi was eight years old, her fervent prayers to the goddess were answered. Emi spent the following years training to become the purest vessel she can so that the goddess may indwell her. She is the kamigakari, to be the purest union of goddess and human. Many other gods and spirits will do anything to stop the union from happening. And now, weeks from the ceremony to fuse them together, Emi discovers a terrible secret - that she - Emi, the soul - will not survive the goddess's indwelling. Red Winter was pretty good. I love, and have seen too much of, the traditional, European, medieval fantasy. Red Winter is a refreshing break from that trend. Red Winter uses an Asian (Japanese?) pantheon and a modern nation. There was magic, gods and goddesses, nature spirits, spells, and shapshifters. It really was interesting, and since I am not too familiar with that particular pantheon, it was all new and refreshing. But as a side note, I would mention that it was sometimes difficult to keep track of all the new terms and foreign names. I really liked the story. Emi struggled with doing fulfilling her destiny, which included strict rules, and living the life she dreamed of. She had to go on a literal and metaphorical journey to learn and decide what to do. One thing that had been outlawed was love. She was not allowed physical contact with anyone on the best of days, much less to kiss a boyfriend. Yet, Emi had two young men seeking after her. Her affection for them made her decision to follow or flee the goddess much more difficult. The characters were great. I enjoyed the main characters very much, but I think I liked the side characters more. The side characters had the funny quirks and eccentricities that come with being a god or goddess of a particular thing. I loved it. I really enjoyed Red Winter and look forward to reading the next in the series. It is a teen fantasy, and I recommend it as such. I received a complementary copy of this book from NetGalley. All opinions are my own, and I did not receive compensation.