Gorgeous Maps in A Book that Makes You Thirsty | Song of the Current by Sarah Tolcser

Caroline Oresteia has always been destined for the river. Her father is a wherryman, as was her grandmother. All Caro needs is for the river god to whisper her name, and her fate is sealed. But at seventeen, Caro may be too late.

So when pirates burn ships and her father is arrested, Caro volunteers to transport a dangerous cargo in exchange for his release. Secretly, Caro hopes that by piloting her own wherry, the river god will finally speak her name.

But when the cargo becomes more than Caro expected, she finds herself caught in a web of politics and lies. With much more than her father’s life at stake, Caro must choose between the future she knows, and the one she never could have imagined.

Blurb: Goodreads.com

Worldbuilding: 4 Stars

Setting: 4 Stars

Characters: 3 Stars

Ending: 2 Stars

Thrill: 3.8 Stars

Overall Score: 3.36 Stars

What I liked:

  • First off, the map is gorgeous. I can see how everything about the book has to do with water in someway, as the world is land as much as river and sea.
  • I could feel all the love for everything related to water, especially Cormorant, the MC’s wherry and home. It was spun beautifully; the image of the wide river all around most of the book, 3 characters on a small wherry, the waves slapping the hull, the sails filling with air, Cormorant hovering over the waves like its bird namesake.
  • There is also a lot of ship-related vocabulary which I didn’t always understand, but it was never an obstacle to understanding the book.
  • Her parents are around. FINALLY a YA book that has that ! Most YA books completely ignore the fact that parents exist. Eveybody just can’t go on an epic adventure at 17 and find their love and do things with them and every single parent would be dead or indifferent or uncaring or MIA or something. I loved Caro’s dynamic with her parents. It felt real and genuine. They cared, they helped, they protected and guided when it was necessary. Moreover, they tried to improve as parents and be what Caro needs.

What I didn’t like:

  • Something I didn’t like was how the MC keeps ignoring the fact she’s having oracle-like dreams and keeps saying the river god doesn’t talk to her. Like, IT’S OBVIOUS ??? WHY haven’t you realized that yet ???
  • In all honesty, I hated the ending. First, her hand is sliced open (not a spoiler ), and in the beginning of the book she is shot in the shoulder, and she just says ‘Ow!’ ??? Like, getting injured like that is not a papercut or something ???
  • Also, not 2 chapters ago she felt intimidated and uncomfortable with Victorianos. She explicitly said it wasn’t her home, and now she is struck by its beauty so much that she can hardly breathe ?
  • Also, more finding true love at 17 and thinking of marriage. Like, dude, when I was seventeen all I thought about was when would my next nap be. I might be a bit on the exaggerating side. But still.
  • I was expecting one twisted cliff-hanger, because it’s the first book of a series. But I didn’t get it. I read and read while it dragged in an ending that was more worthy of a standalone, to wrap EVERYTHING up. But it just didn’t deliver.

Conclusion: Song of the Current is a book that relies more on setting and worldbuilding than anything else. The events, though, were not the most impressive they could be. I wish it had me get more attached to the characters.

The ending fell short of what I expected, and the romance felt predictable.

To me the best part about it was the river and water-centered setting, the strong depiction of the love of a sailor to their ship. I’m not sure about reading the second book though.

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