Children of Virtue and Vengeance by Tomi Adeyemi
Dear Books Lovers,
today is a day of great publications because together with the release of Stars 2 by Anna Todd for Sperling & Kupfer there is also Children of Virtue and Vengeance by Tomi Adeyemi for Rizzoli, a sequel to the much-loved Children of Blood and Bones.
The period of this release, even if only in Italy, could not have been more appropriate. I’m sure you’ve heard of the Black Lives Matters movement, and the protests that are taking place all over the world, because yes, as I’ve heard many say, all lives matter and that’s absolutely true, but aren’t black people like us? Don’t they have a life? So their life matters too, but as it always has been, because of the color of their skin, they have always been considered inferior. For the uninitiated, Children of Blood and Bones has as its protagonists people of color, Africans, who fight, albeit in a fantasy world, to save their people and their country. And like this book also many other impactful titles such as Good Luck Girls, which will also be released by Rizzoli on June 16th. We do not judge the color of the skin, but the qualities of a person. Having said that, let’s move on to the review. (You know that every so often I like to use reviews to express my opinion on issues that are close to my heart.)
I want to be honest, when I started reading this book I did it while remembering a lot of the previous volume. I don’t know if you have ever read a book, which you also liked a lot, but still don’t remember many details of the story. This is what happened to me, but it wasn’t a problem for long as the more pages I read of this new volume, the more the story of Children of Blood and Bone came back into my vivid memory as if I had only read it yesterday.
It was nice to finally be able to follow up on Children of Blood and Bones. Children of Virtue and Vengeance is much shorter than the first volume, but equally rich in content. Right from the start, we re-enter the heart of story, or rather of war. The magic is back thanks to Zelie and Amari, but for some this is good while for others it is not.
In this volume I saw a small change in Zelie’s personality, in the first pages her character irritated me a lot as it did not happen in the previous volume, but in the end my feeling towards her returned as it once was.
As always, I like the way in which Adeyemi interprets the different points of view of the characters in the first person with their own chapters, creating a clear distinction between their personalities without ever confusing the reader. Even if you happen to miss the name of the narrator at the beginning of the chapter, you can understand it from his narration.
And I must certainly mention her mastery in intertwining the various stories, and perfectly reconnecting history and characters with the events of the previous volume. And you will never imagine what will happen in this volume, the only way to find out is to read it. I leave you the plot to avoid making spoilers if you haven’t read the first volume, however I’m sure you won’t want to miss the story of Tzain, Zelie, Amari, Roen, Inan and many other characters. (Oops, maybe I shouldn’t have mentioned a certain name, but you will find out anyway by reading!)
Children of Virtue and Vengeance is the breathtaking second title in Tomi Adeyemi’s YA fantasy trilogy, Legacy of Orisha, following her ground-breaking, West African-inspired debut Children of Blood and Bone. After battling the impossible, Zelie and Amari have finally succeeded in bringing magic back to the land of Orisha. But the ritual was more powerful than they imagined, reigniting the powers of not only the maji but also some nobles with magic ancestry. Now, Zelie struggles to unite the maji in an Orisha where the enemy is just as strong and magical as they are. When Amari’s mother forms an army of royals with newly awakened powers, Zelie fights to secure Amari’s right to the throne and protect the new maji from the monarchy’s wrath. But with civil war looming on the horizon, Zelie finds herself at a breaking point: she must find a way to bring the kingdom together or watch as Orisha tears itself apart.