Daughters of the Storm

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 07 May 2018

Member Reviews

This book has an intriguing premise and unique, complex characters. It's set itself up to be an epic fantasy but was a little long-winded in parts that didn't need the extra boost. I found myself skipping ahead to more interesting parts.
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Wilkins does an excellent job of laying out clear and subtle motivations for her characters. She is also adept at generating scenes demonstrating the complexities of sisterly relationships, which become very much the prime movers of the interpersonal action. Daughters of the Storm is an exceptional epic fantasy adventure kicking off what promises to be a superb series.
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Daughters of the Storm has interesting worldbuilding, with a clash of religions, several kinds of magic, and ferocious warriors. It has an interesting central premise, all about the familial relationships that are tested when a central figure falls ill. It has a wide variety of compelling characters, most of whom are women. What it lacks, to its detriment and what made me take 6 months to read it, is likeable characters. 

Compelling characters can sometimes carry a book for me, in the absence of likeability, but every single one of the royal sisters in this novel is self-centered and awful, and while they certainly had motivation of their own, I dreaded reading about them being awful to each other when the world has been such shit for so long. 

I'd recommend this book to people who like low-key grimdark, those who prefer their sibling relationships to be less wholesome, and folks looking for a lower magic setting.
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I’ve seen people on line referring to this as a start to a YA series. Honestly, I don’t see it. Not the series part, of course, I mean the YA part.  Sure you have some young characters, but certainly no more than many fantasy series.
Five sisters have struggle to cope with the mysterious illness that has afflicted their father, the King.  It’s the sort of story where they have to keep the details a secret, and have to act in mysterious ways. Meanwhile their enemies are circling…
It’s not that there was really anything wrong with this book. But it just was not for me.  Some of the sisters were annoying, but that was intentional.
The real thing that put me off this book was a subplot that put a child in peril repeatedly.  I realize that’s more on me than on the book, but there you have it.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a review copy.
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Full review forthcoming...............................................................................................................................................................................
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I love this author so I had high expectations going into this one. I enjoyed it, pure entertainment. However I feel as though I have read this story before, and it felt more like a young adult fantasy rather than an adult one. I didn’t care for the characters and I need to like a few to get into a story properly.
If you like a light fantasy with lots of characters then I would give this one a try. I still enjoyed it!
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Daughters of the Storm is the first book of Kim Wilkins’s Blood and Gold trilogy. Here, she tells the story of five vastly different sisters that must come together to search for a powerful witch to help their ailing father. Bluebell, the oldest, is a strong warrior who wants to father in her father’s footsteps to be king (not queen) of the kingdom; Rose is married to the king of a neighboring kingdom but who has a terrible secret; Ash, the middle daughter, is discovering her aptitude for magic; the twins, Ivy and Willow, are the youngest: Ivy is vain and selfish while Willow is devout.

I’m not sure how to feel about this book. On one hand, I enjoyed the world-building and the story, not to mention the premise of a story that centered around five sisters rallying to save their father. On the other hand, I didn’t like any of the sisters (except perhaps Bluebell and possibly Ash). 

But what should have been a story of female solidarity and resilience and even sisterly love felt at times to morph into a story of women and characters bemoaning their “difficult” lives. Any time something didn’t go someone’s way, it was always the same complaint of “It’s not fair” – it wasn’t fair when Wylm wasn’t able to be king, even though he was the king’s stepson and didn’t have any royal blood to speak of; it wasn’t fair when Rose wasn’t allowed to love who she wanted because she was married to a king; it wasn’t fair when Ivy wasn’t married to a king, even though she was the youngest and barely fifteen. Instead of trying to make the best of their lives and dealing with the situations they found themselves in, they decided that the best course of action was to complain. No wonder Bluebell was always frustrated with her younger sisters (and stepbrother).

I also felt cheated as the characters of the sisters were told more than shown. While this applied to each of the sisters as well as other secondary characters (for example, Wylm and his mother, Gudrun), it especially applied to Bluebell. We are told constantly that she is cruel and merciless and tough, and while we see that aspect of her character at times, that’s not all that she’s about. I hesitate to call Bluebell complex, though, because any complexity felt superficial and lacking in the depth I felt it deserved. This made it hard to connect to the characters on any meaningful level and left me ultimately unsatisfied.

However, with all that being said, I am interested in continuing the series. Although I couldn’t fully connect with all of the sisters (especially Willow and Ivy, who were literally the worst), I did end up liking most of them enough to look past their mistakes and toward their more redeeming qualities. The ending of Daughters of the Storm had several cliffhangers that I want resolved!

Also, as a side note: maybe it was just me, but I kept drawing parallels between the five sisters in Daughters of the Storm and those in Pride and Prejudice: witty Bluebell and Elizabeth; sweet Rose and Jane; educated Ash and Mary; followers Willow and Kitty; and vain Ivy and Lydia. Obviously, these parallels are not perfect – for example, Willow is a follower of a fanatical religion while Kitty is not – but they’re there (at least in my mind)…

Thank you to NetGalley and Del Rey Books for a copy of this eBook in exchange for an honest review.
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While I can respect the complex plotlines and the writing, Daughters of the Storm failed to really grab my attention. It was a struggle for me to finish the book, and I think part of that stemmed from how little I cared about the conflicts the characters were struggling with. The characters, especially the five sisters, were well-rounded and developed characters, but their conflicts felt like a retread of  cliche plot points. Maybe this is just the struggles of setting up the world for the next two books, but I think I may give this series a miss for the time being.
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I was not able to get into this book as easily I would have liked; unfortunately, it was not my style of book and I was unable to finish.
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Daughters of the Storm by Kim Wilkins is just the sort of book we need while we wait for the next season of Game of Thrones. Five sisters, all with their own gifts, all very, very different, come together when their father falls ill. Bluebell is the warrior woman, lovingly referred to as "Old Iron-Tits" by her sisters; she's the closest to her father, and hell-bent on finding a cure for what ails him, no matter how much blood she needs to shed along the way. Rose is the sister married off for an alliance, but whose heart belongs to another: her husband's nephew. Awkward. Ash has magical gifts she's coming into, but her powers may be even greater than she can handle. Twins Ivy and Willow are... interesting. Ivy has just discovered men, so there's that. She wants to be the center of attention, and can't stand when Bluebell tries to boss her around. And Willow is becoming a religious fanatic, dedicated to the religion Maava. And then, we have Wylm, the stepbrother, son of the king's wife, Gudrun, who is much more than the mustache-twirling, haughty bro villain.

A touch Norse in flavor and epic in scale, Daughters of the Storm is a great start to to a new fantasy series. There's worldbuilding and strong, interesting characters that aren't always likable, but are incredibly readable. They're not perfect; they often act rashly and incur some big consequences that keeps the plot moving. You've got different kingdoms and rulers, delicate alliances and plots upon plots. Relationships are complicated, and if you've ever had a sister that irritated the living Jesus out of you, this is the book for you. The sequel, Sisters in the Fire, is due out next year, and trust me - when you read the last page of this book, you'll be waiting for it. My coworker saw me slap my Nook reader down on the break room sofa and say, "Come ON!" So there's that.

Daughters of the Storm (ISBN: 9780399177477) was published in March 2018 and is available at public libraries and bookstores.
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I wanted to badly to love and enjoy this book and I truly believe that it's only due to my own attention span that I couldn't. Beautiful writing, engaging characters but I simply couldn't finish it.
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I found this book to be beautifully written- however, at times it did seem to drag a little, especially when the sisters were waiting around. Took awhile to get used to there being 5 sisters-yet , each had their own distinct personalities- and especially liked bluebell the best. 

Was a fun story to read-would be great for a lazy summer day.

Will certainly continue on with this series to see where it goes. 

I would like to thank Random House Publishing - Ballantine, Kim Wilkins, and NetGalley for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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In this fantastical, historical adventure 5 daughters are on a quest to save their father, the king from a curse that is draining his life away. Each sister is very different and they are interesting, strong female characters. I will definitely pick up the next in the series. I hope the characters and the plot continue to develop in a satisfying way.
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I wanted to like this one, I really did. But I just didn’t. The story follows 5 very different sisters as they try to figure out why their father, the king, is sick. All while keeping the country and, in general, the entire region as they have ties to other kingdoms as well. The thing that I didn’t enjoy about the book is that the characters all fit into their little boxes and never seem to leave. All 5 sisters seemed to be caricatures of people rather than actual people. The only one that I sort of liked was really the one that you love to hate. I doubt I will pick up the next in the series.
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Daughters of the Storm is an intriguing start to a new fantasy series with Norse mythology elements mixed in. There is betrayal, action, secrets and romance. Following the five sisters and their rather complex relationships, I was hooked to the story. The world building is incredible, as well as the character development. Highly recommended to readers of fantasy.
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Loved this book. Didn’t want it to end.  Highly recommend.  

Love love love.  Incredible book.  Fabulous book club pick too
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I am not a gamer but am aware of the concept of a quest and further understand that the distance between reading and doing started blurring back in the old (antique?) DOS gaming days when adventures occurred one typed line at a time.  Enter the tag "LitRPG."  Are you reading a game or gaming a book?  An ebook?  (This is where I should turn to my nephews for help.)

	Okay, let's go a step further and recognize that games encompass everything from ultratech SciFi to non-tech, medieval-based scenarios with and without magic, supernatural, dragons, witches and more.  So I am speculating that the underlying basis of most quests is the form of honor codified in medieval songs and Arthurian legend:  noble warriors protecting the innocent from evil to the greater good of (God and) all mankind.  Note I have carefully avoided ascribing gender and am using "mankind" in its species neuter format.  And "God" must be perceived as "god(s)" since, whatever your personal beliefs we are talking a work of speculative fiction describing a universe apart from our own with faiths as varied as mankind's.

	All this build-up is by way of appreciation of the densely formatted continents and seas, kingdoms and conflicts presented in Kim Wilkins' tale.  From the title you know women are in the forefront and prove to be leaders, warriors, seers and more with the clear acknowledgement of their ability to be such and yet with underlying sexual tension inherent to biology and probably with an unwitting nod to the "modern" reality in which we live.  A coat is pinned, not buttoned nor zipped (yes, Virginia, pre-velcro) and transport is shank's mare (walking) or horseback.  And the majority, as is regrettably still true today in a modern society which honestly should know better, still do not perceive women as inherently equal human beings despite all the evidence to the contrary.

	By Chapter 3 I was thoroughly engrossed, uncertain whether Bluebell was evil incarnate or the salvation of her people and anxious to learn how the personalities and politics would play out.

	A richly interwoven tapestry; your allegiances will be challenged at various times as the five sisters cope with events around them and each other.  As a saga, the existing action is nicely wrapped up by the end of this massive volume; but the very last sentence leaves myriad possibilities for the future!
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This book took me a while to get into it.  A Norse themed book where you will be introduced to 5 very different daughters of the king.  When the King falls ill and is thought to be on the verge of his death bed it is discovered that magic is behind his sickness.  The sisters go on a quest to find a cure for their father.  Things don’t turn out how they might have hoped and the sisters will find themselves separated and having to deal with different things going on around them.  Will the family be able to hold together or will they fall apart along with the kingdom. The kingdoms fate lies in their hands.

Not a bad start to this series but wish it went a little bit faster in certain sections.  With so many characters to keep track off I think the author did a good job.
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I was fully expecting to fall in love with Daughters of the Storm. However, this one just wasn’t the right fit for me. I wasn’t able to connect with the characters and found the plot to be a bit too slow-moving for my taste. The writing was excellent though and I appreciated Wilkin’s narrative choices. I thought that it was fascinating to have so many points of view, that choice really added another layer to the book. I also enjoyed seeing how the character’s opinions and perceptions of a situation were contrasted because it allowed readers to draw their own conclusions about events in the book.

The focus of the book was truly on the interpersonal dynamics between the characters, particularly the sisters. If it hadn’t been set in a fantasy world, I would classify this novel as literary fiction. As it was, I think that readers looking for a more typical fantasy novel may be disappointed. While I enjoyed the multiple perspectives, it also meant that the story moved rather slow, particularly at the beginning. I actually put the book down multiple times before convincing myself that it would get better and I should continue reading. Daughters of the Storm was not the book for me but I do think that it will appeal to some readers out there, particularly those who prefer books more focused on family dynamics.
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I really liked this book. A group of sisters, as different as snowflakes, join together to embark on a perilous journey to save their father. Bluebell, Rose, Ash, Willow, and Ivy are all motivated by different things, driven by varying personalities and desires, but the thread of familial traits runs deep. 
Each sister has her own reasons for joining the adventure, and they all play their roles to perfection. In this high fantasy romp, dangers lurk around every corner, and enemies are numerous.
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