Ghosts and Grudges: a Japanese-inspired Urban Fantasy (The Shaman Queen Saga Book 1) by Jasmine Walt is now the perfect urban fantasy book! For those who read the first book (by Jasmine Walt and J. A. Cipriano) and weren’t too keen on it, I’d highly recommend reading this version instead. The flow and story are better all around. (full review below)
Minimal spoilers below…
Aika is a medical student who has taken to running her mother’s restaurant as her mother is ill. While at work one evening, she learns she is a rare kind of shaman (one that hasn’t been seen in centuries) and all the stories told to her as a young child are indeed true. Enter Raiden and Shota, cousins who are from the Takaoka Shaman Clan. Kai, an ancient shaman who is possessed by the god of chaos, has kidnapped Aika’s mother. While making their way to rescue her, Aika, Raiden, and Shota meet unique creatures (The Sea Dragon King, mermaids, talking crabs) while battling others (The Monkey King). During this time, Aika learns more about her powers and the shaman world. There are plenty of adventures, creatures and folklore (even an occasional joke/snarkasm), but trying to keep spoilers to a minimum.
I had forgotten how much I enjoyed the lore in this book and it’s even more exceptional with this edition. I will be purchasing future books and can’t wait to see the story unfold. I see another reviewer mentions it would be good as an anime series- I fully agree with this- it would be fantastic!
Parental advisory/trigger warnings: a couple curse words scattered throughout (s-word, dammit, bastard), death, love not ending in a fairy tale ending, warring clans, mermaid breasts, mother sick with cancer, kidnapping, and weapons.
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