Engaging, exciting, and (possibly) educational? Loved it!

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I love the diversity on the cover! Immediately super intrigued to read this book, and the first few chapters cemented that feeling and then some. I was pretty confused, however, at the book synopsis and the Before and After chapters which give me a feeling like this is a sequel (even though it’s not). The feeling gets a little hard to shake in the first chapter, when spunky and reckless Olsa breaks into a nobleman’s home for a spot of good old fashioned thieving—her trade before being recruited on the quest for the godsgem, and one to which she’s returned after discovered the kingdom’s so called Golden Age doesn’t care much for folk like her. I almost feel like this could be a commentary on the experiences some vets face after coming home—such as ignominy and hardship. The writing style was fun, fast-paced, and very engaging. Each chapter was unputdownable and I love the relationship between Kalanthe and Olsa and how we see that develop in two different timelines.