I received a review copy of this book from JC Kang and Caffeine Book Tours as part of my participation in their tour. Thank you so much for including me!
Title: Songs of Insurecction
Series: The Dragon Songs Saga #1
Author: JC Kang
Publication date: 02 March 2016
Cover artist: Binh Hai
Genres/ Age Range: Adult Fantasy
Get the book here: Amazon
- Asian-coded characters
- Racism and racial microaggressions
Princess Kaiya’s voice could charm a dragon.
Had she lived when the power of music could still summon typhoons and rout armies, perhaps Cathay’s imperial court would see her as more than a singing fool. With alliances to build and ambitious lords to placate, they care more about her marriage prospects than her voice.
Only the handsome Prince Hardeep, a foreign martial mystic, recognizes her potential. Convinced Kaiya will rediscover the legendary but perilous art of invoking magic through music, he suggests her voice, not her marriage, might better serve the realm.
When members of the emperor’s elite spy clan– Kaiya’s childhood friend Tian and his half-elf sidekick (or maybe he’s her sidekick?)– discover mere discontent boiling over into full-scale rebellion, Kaiya must choose. Obediently wedding the depraved ringleader means giving up her music. Confronting him with the growing power of her voice could kill her.
Okay, first things first … I LOVE books that include maps (we got two here!! *much excitement*) and the glossary of all the characters is also very much appreciated.
“Hold the dragonfly with care, for even their fleeting lives have value.”
Songs of Insurrection has a really cool premise and I absolutely adore the magic system. Weaving magic through art, music or martial arts is such an intriguing concept. Following Kaiya, the 16 year old princess, who has to meet possible future husbands actually dreams of the old power of the Dragon Singers.
“Duty dictated marriage to the general. Her soul wanted to sing with the song of the world.”
No one really values her voice, her talent until she meets Hardeep. She’s instantly smitten by him. It’s very much attraction at first sight (which I *don’t* have a problem with) but it develops into more a bit too quickly for my personal tastes. Prince Hardeep is an intriguing character though. So that made up for it.
I also really enjoyed the descriptions of Kaiya learning to improve her music, grow her power. About how she needs to listen and the emotions she can pour into her music. Really well written!
I would have loved more detailed and vivid descirption like that of the setting though. Don’t get me wrong, it is described, and probably well done. But I just looove really detailed, vivid descriptions that just jump from the pages and create this certain atmosphere. I was missing that a bit with the setting, but got it with the music.
“My song resonates with your heart and comes back to me”
We follow Tian and Jie for the other storyline and I quite enjoyed these chapters, too. Jie is a badass and it was really interesting to read about her.
What I loved about their story was the slow unraveling of the rebellion and their plans, the political intrigue and all that.
But probably the thing I liked most was Kaiya’s development. She starts of quite unsure of herself and what she might be capable of. She has the heart in the right place though and risks a lot for doing what she believes is right, what the old Dragon Singers would have done and I loved seeing her grow into herself more.
Songs of Insurrection is a really solid and well done introduction to a series. I will definitely check out the sequels!
“How simple those days were! When there was no grey area between Right and Wrong, just like in the songs.”
JC Kang’s unhealthy obsession with Fantasy and Sci-Fi began at an early age when his brother introduced him to The Chronicles of Narnia, Star Trek, and Star Wars. As an adult, he combines his geek roots with his professional experiences as a Chinese Medicine doctor, martial arts instructor, and technical writer to pen epic fantasy stories.
He currently lives in New England, where he works remotely for a social justice theater company.
Facebook — https://www.facebook.com/LegendsOfTivara
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