Released on February 26, 2019, Warrior of the Wild is Tricia Levenseller’s most recent fantasy novel, and it is sure to satisfy fans of her previous works – not to mention fans of the YA Fantasy genre in general.
How do you kill a god? As her father’s chosen heir, eighteen-year-old Rasmira has trained her whole life to become a warrior and lead her village. But when her coming-of-age trial is sabotaged and she fails the test, her father banishes her to the monster-filled wilderness with an impossible quest: To win back her honor, she must kill the oppressive god who claims tribute from the villages each year or die trying.
I think it is safe to say that Warrior of the Wild was one of my most anticipated reads of 2019, and Levenseller did not disappoint. No, Tricia Levenseller knocks it out of the part for again with this one. I just can’t help but adore her writing and her strong, intelligent female characters, and Warrior of the Wild delivered more of her stellar storytelling, fantastic character development, and atmospheric world-building.
“A man who finds his masculinity threatened by a powerful woman is no man at all.” – Tricia Levenseller, Warrior of the Wild
Rasmira will enrapture readers right form the get-go with her powerful personality and fierce determination. With no male heir, Rasmira’s father chose her as the future leader of their people. She’s the only female warrior in their tribe, and she has to fight harder than the others to prove herself not only to her father, but to the people she is going to someday lead – people who see her sex as a weakness. Therefore, it should be no surprise to learnt hat Rasmira is a feisty, headstrong protagonist. She runs headfirst into danger at every chance she gets and refuses help – even when she needs it. Soren and Iris are equally engaging as characters, adding much needed levity and romance to the story. Soren is a very sweet and loyal boy that purposely lost his trial so he could go help his friend (and adoptive brother) Iric. He’s caring and steadfastly loyal, and his friendship (and eventual romance) with Rasmira will have readers head-over-heels in love with his character. Then there’s Iric, who reader’s will find undeniably charming, despite his sour demeanor. His wit and sarcasm were top notch, and he also adds an interesting element of diversity to the world Levenseller has built by being an openly gay character – a fact that seems to be accepted and respected in Levenseller’s world. Really, Rasmira, Soren, and Iric are all wonderful characters, powerful and unique in their own ways.
The world Levenseller built is equally stunning, and its development fits seamlessly with the plot of the novel, allowing Levenseller to show, rather than tell, as the story builds to its inevitable conclusion. This is critical, and Warrior of the Wild is a standalone novel, meaning Levenseller had her work cut out for her when it came to cramming in character development, world-building, and a stunning plot. Yet she did it flawlessly – the novel gallops at breakneck speed toward its epic conclusion, immersing the reader in the world as it goes, and even managing to include a soft twist of romance. The plot is also very well-paced, moving forward with well organized story that keeps the readers abreast to developments, even as it races to a conclusion. That being said, it is evident that fans of Viking-esque settings, action, and romance will love this one.
Overall, Warrior of the Wild is brutal and immersive, with an interesting fantasy element, relatable characters, great writing, and a satisfying ending. Rasmira, Soren, and Iric will capture readers’ hearts, and the fact-paced plot will keep them hooked until the very last page (5/5).