“Baba Yaga, Romanov Prince's, and the Unholy. A fascinating mix of lore.”
From Goodreads: New enemies, new romance, and new horrors,
Billi’s back, and it seems like the Unholy just can’t take a hint.
Still reeling from the death of her best friend, Kay, Billi’s thrust back into action when the Templars are called to investigate werewolf activity. And these werewolves are like nothing Bilil’s seen before.
They call themselves the Polenitsy – Man Killers. The ancient warrior women of Eastern Europe, supposedly wiped out centuries ago. But now they’re out of hiding and on the hunt for a Spring Child — an Oracle powerful enough to blow the volcano at Yellowstone — precipitating a Fimbulwinter that will wipe out humankind for good.
The Templars follow the stolen Spring Child to Russia, and the only people there who can help are the Bogatyrs, a group of knights who may have gone to the dark side. To reclaim the Spring Child and save the world, Billi needs to earn the trust of Ivan Romanov, an arrogant young Bogatyr whose suspicious of people in general, and of Billi in particular.
Let me just get this out of the way: OMG WTF YAY FTW!
Sarwat Chadda’s second book in the Billi SanGreal series is mind-blowingly epic. So epic in fact that I just want to download a list of praising adjectives from a thesaurus and just put all of those in a text and call that my review. Sarwat is a master at mixing lore and handing them to you in a mash up that will literally have you anticipating each sentence. Usually when I am inundated with a mash up of different lore I immediately dislike the book *cough*CharlaineHarris*cough* and am unable to enjoy the work.
In Dark Goddess Billi is faced with life after Kay’s death. She is in a depression and resents being forced into the life of the Templar. On a random patrol she is surprised by a Werewolf and saves a small child from being eaten and that is where the book takes off at a break neck pace to the finish and oh my what a finish.In this book we have Billi starting a flirtation with a Romanov Prince, saving a Spring Child from the epic witch Baba Yaga and learning to become the Templar she wants to be. Sometimes books suffer from what we call the Sophomore Slump but Dark Goddess if anything improved the story of Billi and Chadda’s writing was tight. I am a visual reader and a motion picture plays in my head as I am reading and with Dark Goddess at no point did I have to stop and assign the movie playing in my head characteristics.
These books are so well written and fascinating that I know whenever I start one that I will be incapacitated until I can finish. I only hope there will be more in the Billi SanGreal series. I can’t press upon you enough to read these books. If there is one set I am going to be pushing this year it is this.
Billi SanGreal and her battle are important on so many fronts. Not often do we get a YA character that is not white, that the cover hasn’t been white washed, and more than that Billi is a beacon for feminism: she is strong and needs no one to survive. A true to life self rescuing princess.
Have you read the books or are planning to?
FTC Disclosure: I picked this up in ARC form at a conference.