Hello lovely people 😀 Today I’m here with a spoiler-free review of The Last Namsara. I’m so glad to have finally ticked this one off my list!
In the beginning, there was the Namsara: the child of sky and spirit, who carried love and laughter wherever he went. But where there is light, there must be darkness—and so there was also the Iskari. The child of blood and moonlight. The destroyer. The death-bringer.
These are the legends that Asha, daughter of the king of Firgaard, has grown up learning in hushed whispers, drawn to the forbidden figures of the past. But it isn’t until she becomes the fiercest, most feared dragon slayer in the land that she takes on the role of the next Iskari—a lonely destiny that leaves her feeling more like a weapon than a girl.
Asha conquers each dragon and brings its head to the king, but no kill can free her from the shackles that await at home: her betrothal to the cruel commandant, a man who holds the truth about her nature in his palm. When she’s offered the chance to gain her freedom in exchange for the life of the most powerful dragon in Firgaard, she finds that there may be more truth to the ancient stories than she ever could have expected. With the help of a secret friend—a slave boy from her betrothed’s household—Asha must shed the layers of her Iskari bondage and open her heart to love, light, and a truth that has been kept from her.
This is going to be a difficult book to review because I didn’t hate it but I didn’t love it either. I think it’s a case of “it’s not you, it’s me” with this book; it’s perfectly decent, it just didn’t do a lot for me.
The Last Namsara starts off fairly strong, with a very fast pace. I thought I was going to be swept away on this fantastical journey. However, things quickly slowed down and I found my attention drifting from the story.
The second half of the book is undoubtedly better than the first half and I felt much more invested in that part of the story. I liked the twist, even if it wasn’t the most original I’ve ever seen. But I think, by that point, it was too little too late.
I do have to say that one thing I loved about this book, and that I thought was its greatest strength, was the world building. Ciccarelli intersperses snippets of Firgaard mythology between her chapters, lending a real believability to the world she has created. The old stories really grounded everything in a sense of reality, while at the same time maintaining a mystical, magical air.
Maybe I’ve read too many stories like this now but I didn’t really feel any connection to the characters. Asha didn’t feel any more special or badass than other YA heroines I’ve read about, and the forbidden romance certainly didn’t do anything for me. The dragons were never anything less than awesome though.
Overall, this was a decent read that entertained me for a while. I’m not sure I’m invested enough to want to read the companion novels but I’m sure there are readers out there who will absolutely adore this series! I just wish I could have loved it more myself.
If any of you have read this one, is it worth continuing with the series? Let me know in the comments! x