A sapphic story featuring a girl with a musical weapon? Count me in! Combine that with Julia Ember being the author and I was sold before I even started. I am a huge fan of Ember and so I knew I had to pick up Ruinsong. Keep reading this book review to see what I loved about it!
In Julia Ember’s dark and lush LGBTQ+ romantic fantasy Ruinsong, two young women from rival factions must work together to reunite their country, as they wrestle with their feelings for each other.
Her voice was her prison…
Now it’s her weapon.
In a world where magic is sung, a powerful mage named Cadence has been forced to torture her country’s disgraced nobility at her ruthless queen’s bidding.
But when she is reunited with her childhood friend, a noblewoman with ties to the underground rebellion, she must finally make a choice: Take a stand to free their country from oppression, or follow in the queen’s footsteps and become a monster herself.
(Disclaimer: I received this book from Netgalley. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)
Ruinsong is a story about choices. About taking a stand, discovering the truth about our own power, and figuring out how to use it. To reject people’s choices about who you are, and to let your voice be heard. Cadence knows loss. She knows poverty and what it sounds like when that voice in the back of your head is ignored. Remi feels the boiling beneath the surface and the rage to fight. On the surface, they seem like they couldn’t be more different, but could their friendship be a spark?
When we are confronted with our own survival versus doing what is right, what would you choose? Where Ruinsong truly shines are the characters. The world is one of disparity and injustice, cruelty and spectacle. In a world where sacrifice always follows compromise, how can we continue to fight for a better world? For a sense of justice or security? Especially when our loved ones are in danger, when we know what the mud feels like beneath our feet, when do we take a stand?
I truly loved seeing both Cadence and Remi as they figure out their abilities. Do we let our fears control us? How much can we fight back? Throughout Ruinsong we witness their evolution, especially Cadence. At the end, I felt the ending was wrapped up a little abruptly, but I could have also read about them forever.