The emperor's reign has lasted for decades, his mastery of bone shard magic powering the animal-like constructs that maintain law and order. But now his rule is failing, and revolution is sweeping across the Empire's many islands. The Bone Shard Daughter is a novel of magic, mystery, and revolution in which the former heir to the emperor will fight to reclaim her power and her place on the throne.
There are many things to love in The Bone Shard Daughter ... I found myself daydreaming about Stewart’s worldbuilding long after I finished the book. The world of the Drowning Empire trilogy is fascinating ... The Bone Shard Daughter pushes the limits on what “Asian-inspired” means, creating a book I’ve always longed for: something that deeply but abstractly reflects Asian aesthetics and sensibilities, while also being an epic fantasy in the Western tradition with all its familiar archetypes and tropes ... Stewart’s craft is impeccable from the line level to the plot level, and the characters are lively and fascinating. Stewart has proven herself to be a voice to watch out for in epic fantasy. The Bone Shard Daughter is the strongest start to a trilogy I’ve ever read, and I look forward to preordering the next books the instant they go on sale.
The Bone Shard Daughter brings together the best of fantasy, romance and science fiction, melding them into one glorious one-stop shop of speculative fiction. Not even numerous main characters and point-of-view hopping can stop this beautifully constructed story from shining…well, like a shard of bone in the moonlight ... Stewart builds a compelling world with a fascinating magical system and raises thought-provoking questions that readers will use to examine their own world and life. The Bone Shard Daughter is a stellar and insightful read.
The Bone Shard Daughter is a surprisingly complex book, even for the first installment in an epic fantasy series. It’s full of reflective themes and characters, ways in which elements of the novel mirror each other, or gesture to each other. Using uncomplicated prose, ideas both innovative and usefully recycled, high-quality worldbuilding, and carefully tuned enigma, newcomer Andrea Stewart has delivered a strong and intriguing start, both to her career and to this series ... Although The Bone Shard Daughter expends a lot of its energy on setup, it’s still a finely made book, its ideas sewn deftly together to make a beautiful garment ... There’s a lot of depth to the ideas and motivations underlying Stewart’s characters. However, the language in The Bone Shard Daughter isn’t terribly compelling ... [Stewart's] imagination, and the emotional landscapes she is capable of rendering, should continue to make the Drowning Empire series a worthy read. The Bone Shard Daughter is not a knock-your-socks-off book, but it is decidedly in the upper quarter of this year’s reading, and deserves as much attention as it can get.