Author: Tamora Pierce
Song of the Lioness Quartet, vol. 4
Alanna, Knight of Tortall, has achieved more than anyone might have believed possible: becoming the first female knight in decades, winning the friendship of the Bahzir tribesmen for her prince, winning the affection of the King of Thieves. Still, feeling unfulfilled, the wanderlust grips her, and Alanna sets off questing with her faithful attendant Coram and her cat Faithful to keep her humble. She can mostly keep herself safe. On her quest to claim the Dominion Jewel for the glory of Tortall, Alanna encounters a legendary Shang warrior (who teaches her and falls in love with her), a country torn apart by war, and a mountain spirit intent on keeping her from her goal. On top of all that, as she nears the prize, she finds herself gripped with a feeling that all isn’t well at home and that she needs to return there immediately!
For those familiar with the first three volumes of the Song of the Lioness Quartet (Alanna: The First Adventure, In the Hand of the Goddess, and The Woman Who Rides Like a Man), Lioness Rampant is a brilliant conclusion to an amazing story. The plot is full of delicious features: sword-fighting, magic, romance, intrigue, martial arts, plots, and more. And of course, the story is bursting with Pierce’s wonderful cast–all of whom are so strongly themselves that they totally make the story happen in the best sense possible. Do be warned, there are a number of sad partings in this volume; however, the humor, satisfying conclusions, and general rightness of where the plot goes make up for it mostly. Lioness Rampant comes with high recommendations for anyone who enjoys a solid fantasy adventure.