Reviews tagging Animal death

The Unbroken, by C.L. Clark

8 reviews

foreverinastory's review against another edition

Go to review page

adventurous challenging dark tense slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0

This is a sprawling slow paced military fantasy. The Unbroken explores the facets of colonisation/imperialism and all of the consequences in gritty details. The story starts off slow and stays that way for a while, but if you can invest the time in it, it's well worth it.

Touraine was stolen as a child and raised in the Balladairan empire. The only loyalty she has is to her fellow Sands, the other stolen Qazali child soldiers. Now that Touraine has been sent back to her homeland she has reckon with the ties she thought were gone and what rebellion means. Princess Luca needs to get her uncle off the throne. If she can stop the rebellion in Qazal, it will prove she's ready to ascend the throne. But negotiating peace comes at a higher price than she expects.

I am really glad I took my time with this book. I loved getting to know Touraine, the Sands, the Qazali and the whole world. It was immersive and I constantly wanted to know more about this world and the magic. Touraine makes a lot of mistakes and difficult decisions throughout this book. It was quite messy, but seeing the way her loyalties kept her torn between the Balladairan Empire and the Qazali felt realistic and truly illustrates how insidious colonisation is.

I wouldn't really categorize this as a romance, though there are some romantic relationships in this. I don't really know how to feel about the possibility of Luca and Touraine, especially after the end. There is definitely a power imbalance here and while Luca is a nice person, there's lived experiences she'll never understand. Plus throughout this we see Touraine constantly have to sacrifice those close to her, but Luca is constantly insulated from this choice. I guess the jury is still out on this ship for me, but I'm very invested in these characters future journeys, especially Touraine.

Rep: Sapphic BIPOC female solider MC, sapphic disabled female MC who uses a cane periodically, BIPOC supporting cast, wlw side characters, nonbinary side character, queer normative world.

CWs: Animal death, blood, colonisation/imperialism, confinement to prison cell, cursing, death, genocide, grief, gun violence, injury/injury detail, murder, racial slurs, racism, torture, violence, war. Moderate: fire, kidnapping, medical content, attempted/threatened rape, sexual harassment, slavery (forced enlistment of conquered people). Past mentions of child abuse/death by the military.
 

Expand filter menu Content Warnings

paigemandia's review against another edition

Go to review page

adventurous dark tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

3.0

Idk this one just didn’t really do it for me. I loved most of the characters, except the protagonist touraine just annoyed the hell out of me. None of her decisions were thought out and she just made mistake after mistake. We love a flawed character but she was just not doing it for me. I did love how this novel approached colonialism and institutionalism—that was definitely the strong point of this novel. A lot of it just felt rushed and the characters weren’t built up enough for a lot of the deaths to effect me. It was entertaining enough and the magic system is interesting, so I am looking forward to seeing if the next books in the trilogy are better. But happy to have read 1/3 of the sapphic golden trio. gotta get the jasmine throne next 🙏🏻🙏🏻

Expand filter menu Content Warnings

andromeda_1998's review

Go to review page

adventurous dark tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.0

I’m having a hard time deciding how to write this review. Especially since I did like the book but I question some of the choices the author makes…

What is the book about (without spoilers):
Touraine has been a soldier for most parts of her life. She was a child stolen from her family and she was raised to serve the empire. But when her company is sent back to the land she comes from, to stop a rebellion, nog everything goes as planned. 

Luca is the princes of the empire, sent to her rebel filled colony to still the rebellion. She needs a turncoat to reach her goals.

Together they are looking for a way towards peace between the Empire and the colony.

My thoughts about the book:
Like i said before this book is hat to review. There are a lot of things happening in this novel that I do love but that doesn’t solve my mixed feelings about some things in the plot.

The world-building in this book is amazing. It’s rich and details but we haven’t learned everything there is to know about this world and the author leaves the reader with some major questions especially about the magic system. I don’t think this is necessarily a bad thing since it’s the first book of a series and  I cannot wait to read the sequel.

The writingstyle used for this book is impressive. It reads away in a good pace but I sometimes felt like I was thrown in a scene without any explanation of how we came to that point.

The characters aren’t badly written but i also didn’t think that they were done especially well. One is a princes studying from birth to be queen and the other is a luitenant who has command over her own regiment but some how both of them weren’t able to make a well thought out plan….they both should have known better for 80% of the book.

I hated the relationship between the two main characters. When I heard this book was sapphic I couldn’t contain my happiness but this relationships was a burning dumpster fire of toxic waist.

However I did love the plot and the side plots. This book shows us a good explanation of the sentence “Hey Colonizer.”  It also shows how the europions destroyed all the different cultures that they got there hands on.

Favo quote:
“Too many died I a war that wasn’t theirs”
“Your rebellion would be another one”
“You’ll have to fight for one side or the other. Why not fight for the side that gives you freedom?”
“Because I can fight for the side that’s winning.”
Winning isn’t everything. It’s how you win that matters most

Expand filter menu Content Warnings

lune's review

Go to review page

challenging dark reflective tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

2.0

"Every empire demands revolution."

Luca é uma das personagens mais nojentas que já li. Eu nunca vou entender porque a autora achou que seria interessante criar um romance entre essas duas, juro. Era muito improvável que eu fosse aceitar qualquer arco de redenção que fosse dado pra ela mas o melhor é que não existe nenhum!
 Ela é uma princesa colonizadora, ladrona do começo ao fim. Ela tem umas falas e pensamentos nas narrações que são imundos. 

É tão problemático essa relação das duas. E Luca é tão manipuladora, a cena da página 351 me deu tanta raiva. Me dá agonia. Touraine nos primeiros 50% é essa personagem completamente assimilada, ela busca tanta aprovação dessas mulheres brancas que são a representação do império que da vontade de gritar. A autora coloca Luca dando a liberdade dela gente, literalmente tornando ela cidadã e pensando "talvez" eu faça isso com alguns outros, sabe. Isso porque ela pediu porque duvido que em nenhum momento Luca ia pensar nisso. 

Odiei como praticamente tudo foi tratado aqui. Eu deveria ter conhecido mais do batalhão da Touraine, ter entendido muito mais da cultura dessa cidade. Ter visto muito mais da rebelião, muito mais da magia. Mas tudo foi raso. É bem escrito mas não é suficiente. 

E o final? Péssimo. Horrível. 

Expand filter menu Content Warnings

n_asyikin_'s review against another edition

Go to review page

adventurous challenging dark hopeful reflective slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0

A gripping story that will have you at the edge of your seat. It was bold in its exploration of the effects & consequences of colonization. I thought the contrasting depictions of pro- & anti-colonial view were done brilliantly; the actions of the characters evocative, allowing the reader to explore the complexity of humanity. You will find yourself frustrated, especially when the characters were blatantly pro-colonial; but it was inspiring to see the decolonization of the mind
Spoiler Touraine went through albeit only at the latter stages of the story.


I thought The Unbroken was thrilling & emotionally evocative. It was joyfully infuriating by being action-packed driven by compelling characters. What a great start to a series!

Expand filter menu Content Warnings

candidceillie's review

Go to review page

5.0

literally all of the CWs for this one. It's a hard book. 

Expand filter menu Content Warnings

booksthatburn's review against another edition

Go to review page

challenging dark sad tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0

THE UNBROKEN is a tale of colonialization, uprising, and a stolen child returning to her homeland as a conscripted soldier ordered to bring it to heel. Touraine is one of the Sands, the term for Qazāli people stolen as children and raised to be soldiers by the Balladaire. This puts her in the position of being used to enforce restrictions on the people she came from. Events early in the book remove her from the Sands, the people she's lived with, fought alongside, and bled with all her life to instead be in service to princess Luca. The rest of the book explores Touraine's confused attempts to figure out what she wants and what she's willing to die for, as well as Luca's desperate attempts to hold on to power through the slim thread of her uncle's distant regard and her subordinates' loyalty. One of the strengths of THE UNBROKEN is it highlights the way that someone who is marginalized in their own group but has power and privilege over another group often uses that relative power to gain a sense of control by oppressing someone else. Luca's physical disability and precarious political position lead her to make harsher choices in order to not appear weak, something that would probably be less on her mind if she weren't constantly worried about people mistaking her physical impairment for lack of will. 

The tension between Luca and Touraine is very well handled, as throughout the story their dynamic as a pair constantly shifts, but they're never quite on the same page about the nature of their relationship. It showed over and over how no matter how attracted they might be to each other, the gulf of power between Luca's position and Touraine's means that it's impossible to trust any "Yes" from Touraine when Luca can have her tortured or killed for a "No". This affects everything from their mutual attraction to the treatment of the Sands to the handling of the rebels. 

I love the portrayal of the Qazāli rebels, I can't discuss much there without spoilers but they were dynamic as a group and as individuals, each with their own reactions to Touraine and Luca's various intrusions on their lives, as well as the reality of life under Balladaire's oppressive colonial rule. 

I'm looking forward to the sequel, I'm a little worried that it'll only get worse for the characters from here but I want to know what happens next.

Expand filter menu Content Warnings

achingallover's review

Go to review page

adventurous challenging dark emotional hopeful inspiring sad medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.0


Expand filter menu Content Warnings
More...