Publishing Date: January 11, 2022
After angering a local gangster, seventeen-year-old Sena Korhosen must flee with her prize fighting wolf, Iska, in tow. A team of scientists offer to pay her way off her frozen planet on one condition: she gets them to the finish line of the planet’s infamous sled race. Though Sena always swore she’d never race after it claimed both her mothers’ lives, it’s now her only option.
But the tundra is a treacherous place, and as the race unfolds and their lives are threatened at every turn, Sena starts to question her own abilities. She must discover whether she’s strong enough to survive the wild – whether she and Iska together are strong enough to get them all out alive.
A captivating debut about survival, found family, and the bond between a girl and a wolf that delivers a fresh twist on classic survival stories and frontier myths.
I actually almost dnfed this one because I was having trouble connecting with the main character for the first 15% or so, and I’m SO glad I decided to give it another chance, because I ended up LOVING it.
Sena is hard and closed-off and a difficult character to know at first. She has had to be, living the life she has since her mothers died. She’s alone and determined that that’s the only way to survive on a brutal world like Tundar.
As the story progresses, however, Sena has to slowly grow to like, depend on, and trust others. it’s slow going, and she makes a lot of mistakes trying to do things on her own, but her new friends don’t give up on her and she learns not to give up on them — or herself.
Iska, the wolf she rescues, is a large part of that growth. The bond between them was heartwarming and Sena and her new friends would never have survived without her.
The pace was relentless, and I found myself glued to the story, flipping pages much quicker than I otherwise might have. It was definitely an action-packed, heart-pounding book. In fact, I think it would make an excellent movie and I hope it gets picked up for film. It hits all the right notes of action, friendship, bravery, resilience, danger, and hope.
Tundar is a brutal world, where everyone must fight to scrape a life from the snow and ice. There are so many spine-tingling monsters — and even the trees can kill you. There was a lot of blood and all of the monsters were put to good use. Nothing came easily as Sena and her friends raced across the ice.
I though the end was fitting, and now I want to read more books of Sena and Iska and Remy’s future adventures.
*Thanks to NetGalley and Wednesday Books for providing an e-arc for review.