Oh boy. This book here hurt so good. This was my first grimdark read, and, let me tell you, I was not ready. Our main character Rin, does not have it easy. Like at all. She escapes one bad situation, only to find herself in another one.
I didn’t want to add the blurb for this one because I feel like it would give too much away. I didn’t read it before going into it, and I’m glad I didn’t. I picked this up because it was the group book for one of the readathons I’m in this month called the IronTomeathon. In this readathon, we were tasked with reading only adult fantasy books that fit the prompts given. As I stated, The Poppy War was the group book. I’ve seen many booktubers talk about this and also seen them give trigger warnings for it as well. I can honestly say I am grateful for those warnings because it at least let me know what I was heading into.
This book is broken into three parts. The first part is Ron’s backstory and then her training that is mentioned on the cover. The war that is mentioned comes into play during second part. The main trigger warnings I mentioned above include: graphic violence, sexual assault, and drug use. With this being my first grimdark fantasy, I was definitely disturbed by descriptions of the violence. That being said, it did help to set that mood of “Damn, their enemy is not pulling punches. They definitely mean business.” It really lets you know just had bad the situation is for everyone.
I can not wait until Dragon Republic comes out because I definitely need to find out where this story is going. I’m glad I don’t have to wait too long. I gave this book 4 stars. I really enjoyed it.