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    So immersive that I forgot it wasn't real!

    This is fantasy that reads like historical fiction. The world is so real that I kept forgetting that it wasn’t our world and the events feel so familiar and possible that it was hard to distinguish fantasy from history. It is such an immersive setting that I couldn’t help becoming caught up in it and completely invested in what happened. I did feel there was a little touch of Game of Thrones style peril for the characters as it became apparent that anyone could die at any time and being a “main” character was not protection from death. There was one death in particular that absolutely shocked me and brought home the true danger of this world. Up until that point I was sure that this character was going to have an important life full of adventure and to watch this person snuffed out so quickly and futilely was an unhappy surprise. As the story is told by Danio in old age it was clear that he would survive the tumultuous events he was caught up in and so I never worried about him. Everyone else was fair game though and this was a brutal and dangerous world. Not everyone gets what they deserve and not everyone dies a hero. There were several character arcs that I loved to watch as they developed in complex and unexpected ways. It was very satisfying to hear through the aged Danio what became of all the survivors, although he glossed over his own life. To the end he remained the humble archivist of this little bit of history and didn’t include himself among the ranks of the illustrious people who transformed history so greatly. Even though he influenced those important people significantly he considered himself more of a witness to these grand events. After reading this chronicle of his life there is no doubt that he was much more noteworthy than he gives himself credit for. He was a regular man swept up in extraordinary events. This book has made me rediscover my love for Guy Gavriel Kay and now I want to re-read all of his earlier work. I would highly recommend this to any fans of intricate, immersive world building, historical fiction (even though it is a made up world) or anyone just wanting to lose themselves in a great story. Thank you to Penguin Random House Canada and Viking for providing an Electronic Advance Reader Copy via NetGalley for review.
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    Brightly woven!!

    Guy Gavriel Kay writes more beautifully than any other author in my memory. He weaves another brilliant tale with imagery that places the reader in the scene as it unfolds. And, as always happens when I finish reading a GGK novel, it’s time to re-read “The Summer Tree” again...
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    A Brightness Long Ago

    Beautifully rendered characters, thoughtful, evocative writing.

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