Friday 3 October 2014

The Golden Lynx by C.P. Lesley

Reviewer: Liza Perrat, author of Spirit of Lost Angels and Wolfsangel.

What we thought: The Golden Lynx is set in 16th century Russia, with Nasan, an Islamic Tatar as protagonist. Nasan witnesses the murder of her brother by a Russian, triggering a battle, and the young Tatar princess becomes the peace offering. Nasan is sent by her parents, far away from her homeland to marry Daniil, who is related to her brother’s killer. Before long, Nasan finds herself caught up in events that will decide the future of Russia.

This was a period of history about which I knew next to nothing, and I enjoyed learning about it through this story, which is always a sign of good historical fiction for me. I loved the author’s excellent descriptions, and her intriguing exploration and contrast of the two cultures.

Nasan, in her refusal to play the expected role of women in this society, comes across as strong independent, but I would have liked to witness more of her nightly escapades.

I loved the idea of the Golden Lynx playing “detective” in parallel to Daniil, and, all in all, found this a compelling 16th century adventure. I look forward to reading the next book from this author, The Winged Horse.

You’ll enjoy this if you like: Russian history

Avoid if you don’t like: 16th century Tatar adventure tales

Ideal accompaniments: bowl of borscht, plate of pelmeni 

Genre: Historical

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