Review of Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon

“We may be small, and we may be young, but we will shake the world for our beliefs.”

Synopsis: The world is divided, a queendom is on the brink of falling, and beneath the sea, a darkness is stirring. While the west fear and slay anything that looks like a dragon, the east revere the true dragons as gods. Sabran the Ninth, Queen of Inys must produce an heir to ensure that an ancient enemy remains sealed away. The story is told from the perspective of 4 characters, Tané , a dragonrider in training in the land known as Seiiki, Niclays, an alchemist who was banished by Queen Sabran, Ead Duryan, a lady in waiting to Queen Sabran and a member of a secret society of mages, and Loth, a nobleman of Inys and best friend of Queen Sabran. The east and west have very different views on politics, religion, and dragons.

Review: Queendoms, and dragons, and magic, oh my! While Priory of the Orange Tree is an amazing story filled with action, adventure, and some romance, it also has a strong message about politics and religion. With a great balance between the story and the worldbuilding, Samantha Shannon has crafted an immersive high fantasy standalone. Did I mention queerness? Because there is queerness in this book. And badass female characters who get the job done.

Read: 6/1/2020-8/23/2020 (I didn’t pick it up in July)
Release date: February 26th 2019
Page count: 848
Rating: ★★★★★
Genre: High Fantasy
Audience: New Adult/Adult

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