Sunday, October 19, 2014

Girl Spins A Blade

Girl Spins a Blade is written by Jacques Antoine and is the 4th book in the Emily Kane short story series.  It was originally published under the title: The High Road to the Mountain Gods.  It featured (surprise) Emily Kane, who is looking for spiritual renewal among the Buddhists of Nepal. 

This book was my first introduction to Emily Kane.  I was able to enjoy this book, however I definitely prefer NOT to start in the middle of the series, as there were some passages that talked about previous events that I had no knowledge of .  Otherwise, this book did a great job as stand-alone read.  It started out with great momentum and my biggest confusion was picking up in the middle of the story at the beginning, but it caught me up quickly and I was able to enjoy the rest of the novel. 

This is a short story that I would love to see combined with the other short stories into a complete anthology of Emily Kane.  Jacques definitely has a skill for writing and he does a great job of bringing Emily and the ancillary characters to life.  The scenes are described in detail, when needed, and I especially enjoyed the descriptions of the statues and temples at Katmandu. I did find myself craving more detail about the atmosphere within the Buddhist temple.  I am not sure if this was done intentionally to  leave an air of wonder or if it was left off.  Either way it didn't detract from the scene. 

Being that it is a short story, it definitely moved quickly a covered a lot of ground.  It would be awesome to see such a great story expounded upon into a full on novel.  Once you have written multiple short stories about the same character I would love to see it all put together.

Emily definitely stands up as an empowered female character.  I don't really understand where she got her training or mind control (I assume this was explained in previous books), but it is nice to see her take responsibility for Sonam.  She is supposedly possessing goddess-like qualities, and one may even reside in here.  There was some mention of a grandmother (that I think must have come from one of the previous stories).

I loved the detail that was put into cultural aspects as well as dress of the Nepalese culture.  Although it was hard to gauge the amount of time that was spanned throughout the book, it was great to see Emily taken in by the people and even have one of them want to arrange a marriage for her.  Given the way that her violent spirit seemed to find a shared interest, it would have been nice to get to know this new beau better as a character. 
Overall I give this book 4/5 stars.  IT was well written and an interesting and unique story.  Although you can still enjoy it on it's own, I would highly suggest getting the blanks filled in by reading the previous 3 short stories.  It was only 47 pages long, so it is great for a quality short story read.  I would love to read the previous stories and any that come after this one as the author has created a character I enjoy reading about.  Great for anyone who enjoys reading Asian, Eastern, Nepalese, fiction, woman empowering, fantasy, martial arts, Buddhism, spirituality, etc books. 

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