Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Tuesday Talk: Tamora Pierce

Tamora Pierce is one of my favorite Teen/YA authors.  She writes strong female characters and her books are full of action, adventure, fantasy and a little romance.  While I love her books, I am not a fan of all her series.  In fact, I don't really like her Emelan books (the different Circle series).  They don't really do anything for me.  Her Tortall books, on the other hand I love (Protector of the Small Quartet is my least favorite).  The first series, The Song of the Lioness Quartet, follows Alanna.  From the very beginning, Alanna and her twin brother agree to switch places, each destined to lead the life meant for the other.  Alanna disguises herself as a boy and heads off to the castle to train to be a knight.  Thom heads off to the convent to train in magic.  The series follows Alanna as she struggles to thrive in a world meant for boys.  The friends, and enemies, she makes along the way are lots of fun.  My favorite is the rogue George Cooper, kind of thieves.  I have read this series at least four times.  The next series, The Immortals Quartet I've also read at least four times.  This series follows Daine, a young orphan girl who has an unusual bond with animals.  She is taken under the tutelage of Numair, one of the most powerful mages in the world, to learn to control and wield her rare wild magic.  Again, fun characters.  An adult Alanna, and her friends from the first series, are minor characters in these books.  The next series, Daughter of the Lioness , encompasses two books.  It follows Alanna's daughter, Aly, who finds herself needing all her father's spy training to survive a mission set forth by the Trickster God.  Set in the Copper Isles, this series introduces a lot of new and different characters, with much different culture and backgrounds from the Tortall knights and players.  Her most recent Tortall series, Beka Cooper, is much different than the others.  It takes place a hundred or so years before the others, following Beka Cooper through various adventures as a member of the Provost Guard.  Her descendant, George Cooper, is the famous king of thieves, on the complete opposite side of the law.  The characters in this series are a lot rougher around the edges.  Instead of royalty and knights, this follows the police force through the streets.  It is a look at the criminal underbelly of the realm that we only get glimpses of in Song of the Lioness quartet.  All the series have such strong, well written female leads.  They are all fast-paced and full of adventure.  I always find myself waiting for the next Tortallan installment.  Hopefully Tamora Pierce will keep writing them.  One of the greatest aspects of her books is that they are clean.  There is no bad language, and relatively no sex (when there is sex, it is more implied than descriptive).  Set in a fantasy realm, these books are out of time and can be enjoyed by girls of all ages (12+).  If you haven't given Tamora Pierce a try, I recommend adding her to your list.  Happy reading!

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