The Winged Histories

Sofia Samatar
The Winged Histories Cover

The Winged Histories


This was a surprisingly tricky read at first - probably not helped by the fact I read it before A Stranger in Olondria and came to the world completely cold - there's a lot of background political, religious, genealogical and geographic information to take in at first, so definitely one that rewards careful, slow reading for the first section at least.

Once I got a handle on what was going on and who was doing it, this became a fascinating read. Based around a war of secession and the events leading up to it, it tells the stories of four women who experience the political upheavals in very different ways. The characters all have distinct voices which reflect their lives and upbringings while challenging the assumption, in this world as in our own, that women's lives are worth recording only in the most exceptional cases. And the worldbuilding, while initially overwhelming, is undoubtedly some of the best I've seen.

Clever, heartbreaking and well worth a read.