The magical adventure begun in The Bear and the Nightingale as brave Vasya, now a young woman, is forced to choose between marriage or life in a convent and instead flees her home—but soon finds herself called upon to help defend the city of Moscow when it comes under siege.
Orphaned and cast out as a witch by her village, Vasya’s options are few: resign herself to life in a convent, or allow her older sister to make her a match with a Muscovite prince. Both doom her to life in a tower, cut off from the vast world she longs to explore. So instead she chooses adventure, disguising herself as a boy and riding her horse into the woods. When a battle with some bandits who have been terrorizing the countryside earns her the admiration of the Grand Prince of Moscow, she must carefully guard the secret of her gender to remain in his good graces—even as she realizes his kingdom is under threat from mysterious forces only she will be able to stop.
I was hoping the sequel to The Bear and The Nightingale would be as spectacular as the first book in the series. I was not disappointed.
Russian fairy tales are a favorite of mine and this one has so many aspects of all of them. Vasya is back with the Frost King and some new enemies. Not accepting of the options she has, marriage or a convent, she sets out on her own with her faithful and unusual horse, Solovey.
Dressed as a boy she rides off and finds adventure waits just around the corner. Some mysterious force is burning villages and killing people. Who is to be trusted? Unfortunately not even the priests.
I am not going to give away much of this plot. If you read the first one you will want to savor every beautiful word. The world Ms. Arden paints for us is so easy to fall into much like the snow on the ground in Russia.
I can honestly say she is one of the finest writers I have ever had the pleasure to read.
Del Ray/ New York Book Release is Dec. 05,2017.