Tempests and Slaughter

Tempests and Slaughter
The Numair Chronicles Book One
Written by Tamora Pierce
Fantasy, Magic, Coming Of Age
464 Pages
Published February 13th 2018
Thank you to Hachette Australia
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★★★★☆
Arram Draper is a boy on the path to becoming one of the realm’s most powerful mages. The youngest student in his class at the Imperial University of Carthak, he has a Gift with unlimited potential for greatness and for attracting danger. At his side are his two best friends, Varice, a clever girl with an often overlooked talent, and Ozorne, the leftover prince with secret ambitions. Together, these three friends forge a bond that will one day shape kingdoms. And as Ozorne gets closer to the throne and Varice gets closer to Arram’s heart, Arram begins to realize that one day soon he will have to decide where his loyalties truly lie.

In the Numair Chronicles, readers will be rewarded with the never before told story of how Numair SalmalĂ­n came to Tortall. Newcomers will discover an unforgettable fantasy adventure where a kingdom’s future rests on the shoulders of a talented young man with a knack for making vicious enemies.
The Imperial University of Carthak is a prestigious school, educating the brightest adolescent Mages throughout the kingdom, including promising young mage Arram Draper, the ten year old son of a thread merchant. Mages are a revered member of the community, educated in the artistry of healing, spell casting and the combative arts. Arram Draper is an intelligent, gentle young boy and an advanced learning academic of The Imperial University of Carthak.

Prince Ozorne is an interesting character and although charismatic, isolates himself from his peers at university. Beneath the debonair facade is a volatile and passive aggressive young man, his despair exoneration for the threatening and abusive behaviour towards friends and acquaintances.

Varice Kingsford is a wonderful young woman, a culinary artiste despite the displeasure of her family. Established friends Varice and Ozorne welcome Arram to the independent learning program where he will receive private tuition in each discipline.

In a kingdom where slavery is celebrated in the gladiator area, the Sirajit revolutionaries oppose the barbarism of the royal family, Prince Ozorne's father slain during the uprising and his son determined to avenge his father. Encouraged by his mother, Princess Mahira, Varice and Arram are concerned for Ozorne, the Emperor's nephew now second heir to the Emperor throne. Arram is introduced to the gladiator arena when rescued by Musenda, Gladiator and slave. Under the Carthak empire, slaves are imprisoned to serve nobility or destined for the arena where death is inevitable. Musenda is a gentle, compassionate man, financially supporting his widowed sister and her two children on the arena. Arram has seen the despair, the hunger of enslavement and the life threatening wounds throughout his placement as an apprentice medic, believing in freedom against slavery and a prosperous Kingdom.

Carthak is atmospheric and meticulously illustrated. The linear narrative traverses several years throughout Arram's education, as he begins to specialise in healing. Throughout his interactions with each discipline Master, Arram learns humility, compassion and the atrocities of slavery within the Kingdom.

Tamora Pierce is an esteemed and accomplished fantasy author, exploring a world enduring exploitation and injustice, revenge and slavery. Racially and sexually diverse characters epitomise a vibrant origin story of gallantry and valour. Thoroughly enjoyed it.

36 comments

  1. Wow. I didn't realise Pierce wrote for YA for some reason, I always assumed she was an adult writer. I think I am slightly saddened and curious at what happens to these three for that last sentence in the first para is somewhat ominous. Wonderful review, kelly!

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    1. I assumed the same Verushka but her previous novels seem to be young adult or middle grade as well. I believe it's the prequel to her Numair character series which I'll be reading as well while waiting for the next instalment. This surprised and delighted me, a wonderful read!

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  2. I so need to read this one. It sounds phenomenal, and it looks like it handles some complex subjects within a fantasy quite well.
    Glad you enjoyed it, Kelly!

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    1. It does and it's glorious! I love origin stories and can't wait to read the Numair series now too!

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  3. I still haven't read a single Tamora Pierce book yet, and I think ~this~ will finally be my first! I'm so stoked about the promised diversity, and yes, I am in dire need of an atmospheric setting. <3

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    1. This was my first too Aimee and a complete success! Will be checking out her previous releases too, absolutely loved it!

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  4. Sounds like there will be in interesting, and tense, dynamic between the three friends.


    Karen @ For What It's Worth

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    1. There feels as though there's an imbalance of power between the three, most definitely. Ozorne being heir to the throne, with Arram and Varice often paraded to his mother for validation. I didn't like Ozorne as a character but hoping to see more depth from him in the next instalment.

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  5. I've never read any of Tamora's Pierce's books beofre, but I feel like this would be a really awesome place to start. Awesome review, Kelly! <3
    Megan @ http://wanderingsofabookbird.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. It's the perfect introduction Megan! I'd love to see what you think of it.

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  6. This sounds really interesting, as I have only loved her other series (the ...one I am forgetting...whoops). I know I used to love her books as a child though. Glad you enjoyed this Kelly! It sounds like a lot of fun (and a lot of slow world-building it seems?)

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    1. It was amazing and my first introduction to Tamora Pierce. I'll be reading her previous releases shortly as well, there's so many of them and not entirely sure where to begin.

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  7. Yessss I hadn't heard of this before I received it in the mail but it sounds awesome, I love the whole mage gladiator arena thing! Lovely review Kelly!

    Jeann @ Happy Indulgence

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    1. It's such a wonderful read Jeann, I'm so excited to see where Tamora Pierce takes the series!

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  8. Oh wow this sounds brilliant and like it has a strongly build world around it. I love magic schools! The cover is enticing,I can't stop scrolling back up to look at it. The dripping feather, feels like it's alluding to magic and darkness. Awesome review <3 Another one for my TBR list :-)

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    1. You will absolutely love this one Sarah, guaranteed. It's a stunning fusion of fantasy and a touch of mythology with incredible characters.

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  9. oh i think i read Tamora Pierce once or twice, but i would have to revisit to jog my memory! great review

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    1. Thanks Ailyn. This is my first read actually and now cannot wait to explore her previous novels, thoroughly enjoyed it.

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  10. Just the name of the book sounds intriguing!! - www.domesticgeekgirl.com

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    1. It's not nearly as foreboding as it sounds actually, I have a feeling as the characters age, the series might increase in brutality.

      Ohhh I hope so.

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  11. There's something about this book reminds me of Harry Potter but..different. Got to check this out!

    xx
    Vanessa
    http://www.blushinggeek.com

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    1. It's similar in structure to Harry Potter Vanessa, three friends, a boarding school for mages but that's where most of the similarities end actually. It's darker than Harry Potter, even though Arram, Varice and Ozorne are between the ages of ten and fourteen. One aspect I appreciated was that there was typically always an adult present, rather than children being the chosen one and sent to save the world. It was refreshing.

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  12. I love the title of the book, and this one sounds like something I'll enjoy! I've only read Tamora Pierce once back in middle school (a huge whopping book of 500-600 pages I later found out was the first in a spin-off, I think??? It's hard to keep track of all the books she's written methinks) and thought it was okay. Hopefully I'll enjoy Tempests and Slaughter when and if I read it! ^_^

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    1. This one would be a great launching point into the series again Sophia, I haven't read any of her previous work and loved it immensely. I love origin stories.

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  13. You know, I've never read anything by this author but I'm so happy to hear that you enjoyed it. I like that it includes such diverse characters as well, since that's something that I'm always looking for when it comes to books! Thanks for sharing your thoughts!!

    -Lauren
    www.shootingstarsmag.net

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    1. This was my introduction to Tamora Pierce as well Lauren, I assumed she was an adult fantasy author, which I often struggle with. All this time and I could have immersed myself in her magical worlds. Much regret.

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  14. Great review. Thanks for bringing it over
    Cheers

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    1. Thanks Carole, really appreciate it.

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  15. Tamora Pierce is an author I still haven't read but has been on my TBR forever. This book sounds like it was pretty damn enjoyable and I'm kind of questioning why I haven't read one of her books already.

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    1. I felt the same actually, I just assumed she was an adult fantasy author but from what I've seen, they're all young adult with a few that could be considered middle grade. This one is perfect to start with, I'd love to see what you think of it Becky!

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  16. Tamora Pierce was one of my favourite authors when I was younger and I think she sort of helped my transition from middle grade to young adult. This sounds like such an interesting fantasy novel and it's made me want to reread some of the Tamora Pierce books I read back in the day!! Awesome review as usual, Kelly!

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    1. Her books are prefect for that tween period aren't they. They characters are typically middle grade aged but the storyline has heavier young adult themes, especially in this one. I think you would really enjoy this one Lara, I'd love to see what you think of her writing all these years later.

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  17. YES. I'm so happy to see that you enjoyed this! Brilliant review! It's been on my MUST READ NOW list since I saw it, lol. I love it when an author is able to take fantasy and tough topics and weave them together into a beautiful story. It feels like this book is going to be wonderful and also *mean* something, you know?

    Do You Dog-ear?

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    1. It's magnificent Lindsi, I think you'll enjoy this one and would love to know what you think of it too.

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  18. Haven't read a Tamora Pierce book before (not sure why, I have a few on my shelf!), but this one definitely sounds really tempting! I'm really glad you enjoyed it, and the plot sounds really complex, just the way I like it!

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    1. Me either until this one Joy and I now realise what I've been missing out on all these years. I bought her box set now and plan on marathon reading them all. She's incredible.

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