Sun of Blood and Ruin

Harper Voyager. Feb. 2024. 384p. ISBN 9780063254312. $30. FANTASY
DEBUT For the people whose land is now called New Spain, their only hero against the new government that outlaws their beliefs and magic is Pantera. She fights in the streets against the oppressive soldiers who drag citizens to the gallows in the town square. Yet few would guess that this masked, sword- and magic-wielding heroine is in fact Lady Leonora, the daughter of the Viceroy of New Spain and soon-to-be bride of the heir to the Spanish throne. Leonora intends to fight the Spanish rule of her homeland in any way that she can, including using the traditional magic of her ancestors, even as she plays the political game forced upon her. After she has a run-in with the rebels, her life takes a direction that she can only believe will be the fulfillment of an ancient prophecy. When she learns the truth of her origins, she may have no choice but to embrace her power to protect her homeland and its people.
VERDICT Lares’s debut is an action-filled historical fantasy set in an alternate 16th-century Mexico, featuring Mesoamerican mythology and a unique blend of magic and adventure.
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