The well-known novelist sets her story for young adults in an undefined ancient time, when the Amazon warriors are rulers of their part of the world, east of the Black Sea. Rain is our narrator—she is the daughter of the current queen, but is shunned by her mother because she is the result of her mother’s capture and assault by fifty dishonorable men when the mother was a thirteen-year-old girl. Despite the nebulous time period, we learn some historical details about peoples living in that area. The Amazon women gain power through their unique association with horses and their use of them in battle. They summer and winter in different places, and they take their colonies of bees with them when they move. Rain’s narration shows that their life is a hard one, frequently relying upon what their priestesses foresee. When Rain begins to question her society’s emphasis on war, some of her mother’s subjects wonder whether she should be allowed to become the next queen. While Rain’s life is very different in many ways from today’s teens, friendship, one’s place in the world, and other timeless themes will help to make connections with today’s teens. Age 12 and up.
Ancient World (Other)
169 (US), 192 (UK)