Book Review: THE LAST NAMSARA by Kristen Ciccarelli

Genre: Fantasy
Age range: YA
Star rating: 3.5/5
Series: first in trilogy - second slated for September 2018


namsaraAsha is a dragon-slayer, atoning for the crime of telling the Old Stories that brought dragon-fire down on her people and herself. Though she hunts the dragons down, her people still fear and revile her.

As part of her atonement, she’s set to marry the commandant – the repulsive Jarek who want to possess her. Just before her wedding, her father the King offers her another option – kill the oldest and fiercest of the dragons, the one responsible for the destruction wrought the city.

As Asha sets out to kill the dragon, her path crosses with a slave boy who turns her life upside down.

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As a lover of stories, the ideas that stories are bad, poisoning the tellers and bringing down dragon fire, is very cool – and more than a little worrying! This was what drew me to this story because I wanted to know why stories were killing people.

It was certainly action packed, but was balanced by enough slower – but important and often tense – moments to catch your breath. The ending left the book in a nice place for the second to pick up on.

Jarek is a great antagonist – he’s just such a horrible creep that I was rooting for Asha to succeed just to spite him. He’s not a plain evil man trying to destroy the world, but he doesn’t have this big sob story of a background. He’s simply an unpleasant man with too much power that has gone to his head. This has left his bad side unchecked and it’s festered. I really appreciated this, as it felt far more nuanced than your typical villain/antagonist.

My biggest criticism is that some of the twists were rather predictable. I could tell that something about the ‘known’ facts was wrong and certain people were responsible for the misinformation – and guess what the truth was. Honestly, I find this with most books. I think it’s just that, in such a packed genre, it’s hard to be utterly original.

The slave boy doesn’t get named until 2/3 of the way threw. This is rather important for her journey, but it made it hard to relate or like him as he wasn’t a ‘real’ character until he got a name, so I didn’t feel anything for them as a couple until then. Afterwards, it was a bit hard to get into them as it was almost like a new character.

Overall, a nice book and the ending sets up an interesting scenario for the next book.

Read my reviews of other books by Kristen Ciccarelli:

Iskari (this series):

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