Book Review: Daughter of the Sun

A book about Egyptian Gods, cats and magic (and it’s released on my birthday?) … I think Daughter of the Sun was meant for me! I am so thankful to Xpresso Book Tours for the chance to review this debut novel by Zoe Kalo.

28934536Daughter of the Sun
by Zoe Kalo
Release Date: May 2016
Add to Goodreads

Summary from Goodreads:

Sixteen-year-old Trinity was born during a solar eclipse and left at the doorsteps of a convent along with a torn piece of papyrus covered with ancient symbols. Raised by nuns in the English countryside, she leads a quiet life until she’s whisked away to the Island of Cats and a grandmother she never knew.
But before they can get to know each other, her grandmother dies. All that Trinity has left is a mysterious eye-shaped ring. And a thousand grieving cats. As Trinity tries to solve the enigma of the torn papyrus, she discovers a world of bloody sacrifices and evil curses, and a prophecy that points to her and her new feline abilities.
Unwilling to believe that any of the Egyptian gods could still be alive, Trinity turns to eighteen-year-old Seth and is instantly pulled into a vortex of sensations that forces her to confront her true self—and a horrifying destiny.

tumblr_n3vi685uon1tt1y3eo1_500

As a self identifying egyptophile, I get so excited when authors choose Ancient Egyptian mythology / culture / history / religion as a base for a new book. As a practicing Pagan, I’m always a little leery about books involving the Gods of Egypt. Of course there were some artistic license when it came to facts about the Gods (eg, Apep is technically not a God and Ammit did not work for him.) However, Daughter of the Sun was a pleasing read on all accounts.

I’ll admit that it took me a while to get “into” Trinity, our heroine. After around the 30% mark I was completely won over and couldn’t put the book down. I loved her chemistry with Seth, and while there was some teenage crushing and hormones flying, I was happy that this book is insta-love free!

tumblr_mkiwkrcbhm1rc3z3ro1_500

It is also worth noting that Zoe Kalo is presumably a great lover of cats (and if you doubt me feel free to check out all the adorable kitten photos on her twitter). She way she writes cats into the book is astounding. Every little quirk, mew and lick is incredibly authentic. I love it when a writer is skilled at writing about the animals in the character’s story, it makes it more warm and fuzzy, no pun intended.

However, Daughter of the Sun was not without its faults. The plot moved along a bit too quickly for my liking, falling into the “telling not showing” trap that I as a reader and a writer am all to familiar with. I would have like to see things slowed down a bit so I could get to know Trinity better before her life was turned upside down. As the story went on the narration of pacing did improved a lot.

I hope as the series goes on, Trinity stops being afraid of witchcraft and magic and accepts her powers for what they are. It bums me out when magic doers are instantly labeled bad or cast as villains.

Wrapping up, this was a quick read by a new author who shows much promise. The story was wonderfully imaginative and I hope to see more authors taking inspiration from Ancient Egypt. I can’t wait to read the second installment in the trilogy – but sadly there is no indication on the author’s Goodreads page when that will be.

A free copy of this book was provided for an honest review. Thank you Xpresso Book Tours!

*************a Rafflecopter giveaway*************

daughterofthesuntourbanner-1

Advertisements

KO – Thoughts on Wep Ronpet 2014

As  I was saying in my previous post that I needed to split up, I don’t often talk about my religion. Why? Well, its personal. I don’t like biblethumpers or extremist atheists getting all “up in my grill”, so I don’t usually bring up the subject.  But I promised myself I would make this blog more personal and this is just to big a side of me to ignore for the sake of the public’s opinion.

So, for all of you who did not know, Wep Ronpet (or the Kemetic New Year) was on Aug 2 2014. Before Wep Ronpet are the 5 Epagomenal days, representing the days that Djehuty bargained for so Nut could give birth to her five children. (I’m not a Egytpologist, so here’s some info.) The celebrations for each of the Gods were preformed over IRC chat for the members of the temple that could not make it in person at Tawy House. (Tawy House is our temple in Joliet, Illinois – I live in Canada so was unable to make the week long event.)

Day 1 – Wesir (July 29th 2014) 

I was pretty nervous walking into this one. Wesir and I haven’t spoken since a ritual I did years ago that is better left unmentioned. Needless to say, I was terrified that I had disrespected Him and that He hated me forever – yeah, I’m serious. So when I sat at my shrine and lit a candle for him, with the IRC chat going on in the tablet on my lap, I was very pleasantly surprised. I felt totally forgiven, in fact it was more the feeling of “there is nothing to forgive.” I nearly cried. But afterwards, I felt much lighter and free. I didn’t worry about what I had done anymore and I thanked Him and celebrated Wesir with the rest of the temple.

Day 2 – Heru the Elder (July 30 2014)

I did not know what to expect with this one. Heru the Elder (aka NOT the Heru born of Aset and Wesir), is not a God that I know well, in fact I had never approached Him before this ritual, also run over IRC. But He was welcoming and I felt very content after it was all done. A break from the emotions of last night, I was able to simply enjoy the presence of Netjer with my fellows in the temple and pray for the New Year.

Day 3 – Set (July 31 2014)

I am just as guilty as most other people who have preconceived notions that scare them away from Set. I never understood Him, and kept my distance out of fear of being smited with a red sandstorm of wrath. How wrong I was. Of course I was nervous going into it, but so many of the members of the temple speak of Set so fondly and with such reverence, I was really excited to meet Him. He didn’t say anything to me, but His presence was obvious. There was a solemn heaviness in the room, so much so that I felt it weighing down on me. But the weight did not feel threatening, instead it was a protective, warrior-like feeling that made me feel safe knowing I had the Red Lord in my corner if help was needed coming into this New Year.

Day 4 – Aset (August 1 2014) 

My experience with Aset was amazing. I don’t want to get into too much details, besides that it included an incredible amount of hugs and me lagging on the IRC because it was hard to pay attention to my tablet with Her near me.

Day 5 – Nebthet (August 2 2014)

My experience with Nebthet was much different than with any of the other Names, simply because it was done during the day and thus my toddler-aged daughter was awake and she needed attention. I sat at my shrine and lit incense and candles while keeping up with the IRC and sitting with her on my lap. She joined in with the Heka and scribbled on some paper as we all wrote letters to Nebthet and blew out the candles for me when we were done. (Which she loved.) My ritual with Nebthet, though I barely got in any quiet prayer time was one of the best, because She reminded me, what was most important in life and how precious it was.

So there it is, I was going to include some of my resolutions for the next year, but I think they’re better off left unsaid. I woke up to greet the Sun and praise Ra this morning and I also said some words for all 5 children of Nut. (Wesir, Heru, Set, Aset and Nebthet). Here’s to another wonderful year! Nehktet!