DAMN, what a book! The Unbroken by C L Clark is a huge triumph in my opinion. It is a really interesting military fantasy, which delves into the world of colonisation and its overall effect on the people. Set in a North African inspired, queernorm world where the colonised Qazāl is running rife with rebels.
It has dual perspectives which I loved:
Touraine, a soldier who dreams of becoming a respected leader within the military like her General Cantic. She is loyal to her fellow conscripts to a tee. That is until she is kidnapped by the rebels and learns more about her past, her people and even her family. Her loyalties become severely torn, and she struggles with her decisions from then on.
Luca, a princess of Balladaire is sent to Qazāl by her uncle to end the rebellion. She is on a personal mission to find the lost magic within the city and take it back with her, in the hopes of securing her throne. She dreams of peace but is young and unsure how to gain it within a highly charged situation. She enlists Touraine to help her.
The political intrigue is on point, it is hard-hitting and definitely packs a massive punch. The novel itself is beautifully diverse, with POC and LGBTQ+. Luca is physically disabled having been trampled by a horse and as a result, lives with chronic pain. I haven’t read many fantasies where the MC struggles with chronic pain, as a sufferer myself I praise the author for being so inclusive with her characters.
If you’re looking for a book to speed read, this isn’t it. You really need to read The Unbroken slowly, to savour it and soak up all of the information.
Title: The Unbroken
Author: C.L Clark
Rating: Four Stars