Teo wants nothing more but to punish those who disrespect her powerful father, using her hidden magic to turn them into inanimate objects. When a letter arrives for her father and ends up poisoning him near to death, Teo needs to go into the city to find a cure. But nobody will speak to a girl, so she must master her wild magic enough to turn herself into a boy, a spectacular skill she observed a stranger perform. What Teo does not know is that her magic, life and family are all in danger now and her choices may seal their fate.
I found this to be a very interesting approach to gender, and the way the characters describe themselves made so much sense, broaden gender boundaries in a positive way. I like how fluid Cielo was, able to have both male and female characteristics but it was so harmonious, part of them as a whole. Oh and the tension between the main character Teo and the gender fluid Cielo ramped up so taut throughout the story I was afraid I was going to snap right along with them. Every stolen glance or brush of the hand was so intense! Amy does a fabulous job of showing that gender does not matter when it comes to attraction and feelings.
I will say though that Teo spent a lot of time thinking about sex while she was suppose to be finding a cure for her father, battling her brother and some serious loss and spying on the ruler- it seems like she had way too much on her plate for desire, but what would I know.
There was magic but also heartbreak in this story. It was kind of like a yin and yang- learn to create this impressive, powerful magic yet at the same time destruction and death will follow- one might even say that magic leads to death. The entire concept of the Brilliant Death was terrifying. Never has a title been the best fit ever so a book than this.
This was a very interesting, different book from anything I have ever read. I highly recommend an adventure into this dark, dangerous, fantasy world full of passion, lies and discovery.
Review can be found at https://smadasbooksmack.blogspot.com/