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The Dragon Republic: The award-winning epic fantasy trilogy that combines the history of China with a gripping world of gods and monsters: Book 2 (The Poppy War)

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Rin “gleefully” seeks them out and, “[screeching] with laughter”, berates them for what they’ve done, thinking “how terribly funny it was that she wasn’t the only one with mass murder on her hands”. And while most of the people are complacent to go about their lives, a few are aware that a Third Poppy War is just a spark away .

War has changed her and her companions, and yet they still can’t catch a break; peace remains firmly lodged out of grasp and unforgettable loss continues to happen. Yes, that one, the one I, however disturbingly, love—that is my Kitay going from an uptight, moral cinnamon roll to a viciously practical scholar slaying me with his sass. The Best Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Novels to Read in August (Plus: Short Stories and Sequels! But in all honesty, even as I love Rin’s lethal, unapologetic quickness and zero tolerance, she’s too much of a follower—needing to be disciplined, craving her abusers, picking paths rather than carving her own—to capture my heart yet. The grudges of gods are as deathless as their flesh, and men with everything at stake are dangerous.I mentioned in my review of the first book that that Rin is one of my favorite heroines in fantasy because I found her to be very well-written and her personality traits were really clear. Kuang wrote The Poppy War while teaching debate in China and graduated with a degree in Chinese History from Georgetown University a few days after its release. She is written inconsistently and despite efforts by Kuang to demonstrate or, on occasion, even justify the way she thinks or acts, it is impossible for me to empathise with somebody who is completely apathetic to others. This is a book that is grim and dark and sucks your energy away like a black hole devouring all light. Also, just the entire discussion of xenophobia at the heart of this story, while also always highlighting colonization, is so important and I can’t wait to see all of this discussed even more in The Burning God.

Also, seeing the way that this world has changed him has broken me beyond repair, but his friendship with Rin means everything to me. After more civil war and unrest, the Beiyang government was established as China’s central authority with Yuan Shikai being the first formal President of the Republic of China. People like her waved a hand and millions were crushed within the confines of some elemental disaster, flung off the chessboard of the world like irrelevant pieces.People like her-shamans, all of them-were like children stomping around over entire cities as if they were mud castles, glass houses, fungible entities that could be targeted and demolished. And you think you're on the brink of madness, you think that this moment is going to be when you finally snap, but it's not. The water had only come up to Nezha’s waist and Mingzha’s shoulders, had only been getting shallower the closer they moved to the grotto. Lucy Lockley wrote in Booklist that the author's "descriptive storytelling reveals the grueling psychological and material cost of war.

In Altan's gaping absence, Rin must come face to face not only with who he was, but who she is, what’s she’s done, and decide what kind of person she wants to be. They’d grown up with warnings of dark, dormant evils concealed behind the cave mouths; of monsters that lurked inside, eager for foolish children to stumble into their jaws.She has no impulse control, and she does a lot of stupid things because of her anger and what happened to her. One of my favourite aspects of this novel was the relationships between Rin and a lot of the major characters. Trying to set that aside though, I have thoroughly enjoyed the magic system in this book - it's fresh, fun, and a thrill to read about. By the end of this book, we are poised for the commencement of hostilities between the 2 parties which I would assume will result in Rin gaining control of the mainland and Vaisra, or whoever is left of his government, being forced to retreat to the island of Taiwan or killed.

But my first obligation is not to the unborn people of this country's future, but the people who are suffering now, who pass their days in fear because of the war that you have brought to their doorstep. It was followed by The Dragon Republic, which was published in 2019 and The Burning God, which was published last month. That being said, something you have to know is that Rin is inspired by Mao Zedong, Rin does make questionable decisions. But when the Dragon Warlord, Yin Vaisra, appears to her out of nowhere with a bewitching offer to free their people from this last vestige of their long torment—to crack the uncrackable empire, and capture Su Daji, the gold yolk within—Rin's dream of revenge ignites, and she agrees to joins Vaisra's army.When Rin and Altan are captured by the Mugenese they are subjected to science experiments and made into heroin addicts. I did get the vibe from the first book that something was off, but I couldn't put my finger exactly on it - it was very clear that Nikara was China, and even looked like it on a map - and there were multiple references to Sun Tzu, which seemed odd to reference a real life person in a fantasy book. We bear that legacy of pain on our shoulders—our backs are bent beneath their weights and our heads beaten down. The company has teamed with financing and production banner SA Inc to develop and finance the female-led, fantasy epic, which combines the history of twentieth-century China and a world of gods and monsters.

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