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SCORPICA by GR Macallister

A centuries-long peace is shattered in a matriarchal society when a decade passes without a single girl being born in this sweeping epic fantasy that’s perfect for fans of Robin Hobb and Circe.

Five hundred years of peace between queendoms shatters when girls inexplicably stop being born. As the Drought of Girls stretches across a generation, it sets off a cascade of political and personal consequences across all five queendoms of the known world, throwing long-standing alliances into disarray as each queendom begins to turn on each other—and new threats to each nation rise from within.

Uniting the stories of women from across the queendoms, this propulsive, gripping epic fantasy follows a warrior queen who must rise from childbirth bed to fight for her life and her throne, a healer in hiding desperate to protect the secret of her daughter’s explosive power, a queen whose desperation to retain control leads her to risk using the darkest magic, a near-immortal sorcerer demigod powerful enough to remake the world for her own ends—and the generation of lastborn girls, the ones born just before the Drought, who must bear the hopes and traditions of their nations if the queendoms are to survive.

Title : Scorpica
Author : GR Macallister
Series : The Five Queendoms #1
Format : Paperback
Page Count : 464
Genre : Adult Fantasy
Publisher : Titan Books
Release Date : February 22, 2022

Reviewer : Micky
Rating : ★ ★

Micky’s 4 star review

An epic worldview
Female-dominated political intrigue
Brutal & engaging

I have so many thoughts on finishing this book. I feel like I’ve been brought into an fantasy world that is something of an epic and I’m very ready to carry on with the series.

This book feasted in the themes of feminism, female leaders, matriachal families and the prominence of female children. Those elements had problematic sides as you can imagine. Equality wasn’t necessarily on the menu but quite honestly, it felt refreshing to read an adult fantasy in the ilk of Game of Thrones from the female view point.

There were a range of stories in tandem being told until the connections started to knot together. I championed lots of the characters, but it wasn’t always wise to get too invested. It was a magical world with some interesting powers and gifts but don’t be misled, this world was also about the brute force of some of the female soldiers and queens; magic had a place, but it wasn’t the only power.

Scorpica was a dense fantasy read and that depth of world building and characterisation really worked for me. It felt like something I could really get my teeth into. Definitely a recommendation for all adult fantasy fans.

Thank you to Titan Books for the review copy.