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Poppy War
Poppy War | R F Kuang
A "Best of May" Science Fiction and Fantasy pick by Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Audible, The Verge, SyFy Wire, and Kirkus"I have no doubt this will end up being the best fantasy debut of the year [...] I have absolutely no doubt that [Kuang's] name will be up there with the likes of Robin Hobb and N.K. Jemisin." -- BooknestA brilliantly imaginative talent makes her exciting debut with this epic historical military fantasy, inspired by the bloody history of China's twentieth century and filled with treachery and magic, in the tradition of Ken Liu's Grace of Kings and N.K. Jemisin's Inheritance Trilogy.When Rin aced the Keju--the Empire-wide test to find the most talented youth to learn at the Academies--it was a shock to everyone: to the test officials, who couldn't believe a war orphan from Rooster Province could pass without cheating; to Rin's guardians, who believed they'd finally be able to marry her off and further their criminal enterprise; and to Rin herself, who realized she was finally free of the servitude and despair that had made up her daily existence. That she got into Sinegard--the most elite military school in Nikan--was even more surprising.But surprises aren't always good.Because being a dark-skinned peasant girl from the south is not an easy thing at Sinegard. Targeted from the outset by rival classmates for her color, poverty, and gender, Rin discovers she possesses a lethal, unearthly power--an aptitude for the nearly-mythical art of shamanism. Exploring the depths of her gift with the help of a seemingly insane teacher and psychoactive substances, Rin learns that gods long thought dead are very much alive--and that mastering control over those powers could mean more than just surviving school.For while the Nikara Empire is at peace, the Federation of Mugen still lurks across a narrow sea. The militarily advanced Federation occupied Nikan for decades after the First Poppy War, and only barely lost the continent in the Second. And while most of the people are complacent to go about their lives, a few are aware that a Third Poppy War is just a spark away . . .Rin's shamanic powers may be the only way to save her people. But as she finds out more about the god that has chosen her, the vengeful Phoenix, she fears that winning the war may cost her humanity . . . and that it may already be too late.
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CBee
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Dearest @Daisey ♥️♥️ Thank you for the #kindlitsy gift! I needed this today 😊 I appreciate it so very much!!

Daisey Glad to hear it made your day a little brighter! 7h
CBee @Daisey it totally did 😊 6h
CBee @Daisey I have a copy of “The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrun” by Tolkien. I‘d love to send it to you if you‘d like it? (edited) 6h
31 likes3 comments
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ScorpioBookDreams
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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I‘m about a third of the way through this and absolutely love it so far!

valeriegeary And I absolutely love this picture. 😘 1w
72 likes1 stack add1 comment
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Geeklet
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Excellent deal today on The Poppy War for Kindle readers. The book is about a young peasant girl who gets into a elite magic warrior school. The premise sounds lamer than it really is. I guess you‘d consider it a YA book but I really enjoyed it and I‘m not much of a YA fan. The sequel The Dragon Republic comes out in August. #ebookdeal #kindle #fantasy

Ashley_Nicoletto I am thinking about rereading this one in anticipation of reading the second one. 2w
Geeklet @Ashley_Nicoletto I got it from the library but I enjoyed it so much that I think I‘m going to buy hardcovers of the first and second books when The Dragon Republic comes out. There will definitely need to be a reread of the first one. I‘ve forgotten a lot of the plot. 2w
25 likes2 comments
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Heatherfeather
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Picked up these two at Anderson's Bookshop today! #bookhaul

I love that Litsy won't judge the fact that I already have like 60,000 books on my TBR and yet I buy more.

Lisas.Library Are you in Illinois? 4w
Follow.my.read I loved Once Upon a River!!!! 4w
Tamra @Follow.my.read me too! 4w
Heatherfeather @Lisas.Library yep!!! 4w
Lisas.Library Me too! I love Anderson‘s! 4w
19 likes1 stack add5 comments
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thegirlwiththelibrarybag
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Finally my hard to track down hardback copy arrived in the post!!! Loved this book when I read it earlier in the year - feels like a series (duology?) that I‘ll be rereading...

Jee_HookedOnBookz Apparently a trilogy! Happy re-reading! 📙 1mo
thegirlwiththelibrarybag @Jee_HookedOnBookz, a trilogy! Ok - probably won‘t reread until they are all out 1mo
61 likes2 comments
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tealwish
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Pickpick

Intense. Not sure how to feel about the ending or the main character right now. It took me down a depressing rabbit hole of reading about the Nanking Massacre which I heard The Poppy War was based on. I had difficulty reading those parts, and then to read that an atrocity happened similar in reality is disturbing. I love that a fantasy expanded my history and deepened my compassion. Perhaps that was the author's goal.

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Lindy
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Children ceased to be children when you put a sword in their hands. When you taught them to fight a war, then you armed them and put them on the front lines, they were not children anymore. They were soldiers.

(Looking at photos of child soldiers on the internet makes me so sad. Above: Myanmar.)

wanderinglynn Child soldiers 😢 it‘s such a crime to steal childhood like that. No one should have to see the kinds of things you see in war, especially not those whose brains aren‘t fully developed. I can‘t imagine what this does to the children. Heartbreaking. Tragic. And so very wrong. 2mo
gradcat It‘s such a terrible problem in Africa as well...I can‘t even begin to understand what they must go through...and how they can possibly come out on the other side. 😞 2mo
Lindy @gradcat And in Latin America also. I‘m glad there are NGOs working to help former child soldiers and to prevent further recruiting. 2mo
Lindy @wanderinglynn Yes, indeed. 😔 2mo
gradcat I hope the NGOs can do this successfully while also staying out of harm‘s way...these are such volatile situations. 2mo
35 likes5 comments
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Lindy
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Now she had nothing to do—her future was out of her hands, and knowing that made her feel far worse.

(Photo: my grandniece, age 10, is currently visiting us. She was in an artistic mood.)

britt_brooke Love her creation! 2mo
Lindy @britt_brooke 😁Me too. 2mo
batsy I'm an instant fan of her art 🙂 2mo
See All 7 Comments
gradcat Nice! 🥰 2mo
Lindy @batsy @gradcat 😁🎨 2mo
readordierachel That is fabulous! 2mo
Lindy @readordierachel 😁👍 2mo
37 likes7 comments
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Lindy
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Pickpick

A sprawling military fantasy inspired by the atrocities of the Sino-Japanese wars. Shamanism, dangerous gods, martial arts, corrupt power & social imbalances along the lines of wealth, privilege & race. The central character is an emotionally complex young woman, a war orphan. Her vengeful hatred of the enemy makes for a bleak ending, but balance may be restored in book 2, due this summer. 19-hour #audiobook expertly narrated by Emily Woo Zeller.

Lindy @TrishB It‘s hard to sum up my experience. The subjects of genocide, dehumanization and revenge make for grim reading, yet I found this compelling and plan to read the next book. 2mo
TrishB I‘m still up for reading it! Soonish.... 2mo
Lindy @TrishB 👍 2mo
37 likes3 comments
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Lindy
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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War doesn't determine who's right. War determines who remains.

(Image is from the author‘s blog, a map that shows to what extent her fantasy novel draws on the landscapes of China and Japan. RFKuang.com )

TrishB Interested to see what you think of this one! I have it waiting. 2mo
Lindy @TrishB I have tagged you in my review. 😊 2mo
33 likes2 comments
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Lindy
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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But how does the existence or nonexistence of the gods affect me? Why does it matter how the universe came to be?"
"Because you're part of it. Because you exist. And unless you want to only ever be a tiny modicum of existence that doesn't understand its relation to the grander web of things, you will explore.”

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Jee_HookedOnBookz
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Pickpick

A page turner. Loved the plot as much as the characters. I liked how this novel blurred the areas of good and evil, right and wrong; how we, when consumed by powers, try to play God, yet at the same time err as humans. Ponder on this: What would you do if you literally have a God by your side, have powers as great as his/hers and able to bend the entire world to your will? What. Would. You. Do? Looking forward to the sequel!

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DoubleARon
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
Pickpick

Wow, well this was a fun and intriguing read. Full of an interesting blend of fantasy and psuedo- history. It kinda rambled a little towards the middle, but found its footing in a tragic and awesome way. Very enjoyable, and I look forward to the following volumes.

Theaelizabet My daughter liked this one and passed it on to me. Not something I‘d usually read, but I am intrigued. (edited) 3mo
3 likes1 comment
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sparrowssavvy
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Pickpick

I was waffling with this book a lot. While I loved the concept and the overall story, I had trouble getting through this book. I honestly don't know what it is, I can't put my finger on it, but something was missing for me.

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placebeyondthespines
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Pickpick

Kuang wrote this book as a fantastical retelling of 20th century China to put a spotlight on the gruesome Massacre of Nanjing during the Second Sino-Japanese war. This book is a study on suffering, warfare, and trauma. It is a study on our conception of good versus evil and right versus wrong and at what point these lines become blurred enough that we can‘t separate ourselves from the enemy. 5/5⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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Decalino
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Pickpick

What begins as a familiar coming of age story--a mistreated orphan tests into an elite military academy--gradually morphs into something much darker; a confrontation with the brutal realities of war and the all too human tendency to dehumanize one's enemies. Set in a world inspired by Chinese history and mythology, The Poppy War is a gripping, sometimes gory, ultimately devastating book. Fans of Pierce Brown may be particularly interested.

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Grrlbrarian
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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1. Bagpiping and more bagpiping. Soooo many gigs!
2. Having two great daughters
3. Done! And WOW this fantasy was intense, violent, yet good.
4. So many, but in honor of the holiday, Gráinne Ni Máille. Pirate queens ?❤️?
5 @howjessreads @Coleen_Nieto
#friyayintro

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beaconhillbooks
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Mehso-so

Great start but did not like middle to ending as much. Based on sino Chinese war and rape of Nanking so expect violence.

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Dragon
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Pickpick

I went into this novel thinking it was YA fantasy but it‘s definitely adult fantasy. Trigger warning for violence and war time atrocities. Rin , a war Orphan, has one way out of her small village and arranged marriage, pass the national exams and win entrance to the most elite military academy in the country. RF Kuang has envisioned a densely detailed landscape based on modern Chinese history. Immersive and fascinating two thumbs up 👍👍

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Rudis
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Pickpick

I wasn‘t quite sure what to expect after I‘d heard so much good things about this book, but it quickly blew past all my expectations. It was a gritty look at war & genocide & gods, but not entirely hopeless.
It also brings my total of finished books to 15 for February, which I‘m very happy with.

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shruthisubramani
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Pickpick

Best book that I have read in recent days

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Mitch
Poppy War | R F Kuang
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Read 2, about to start a third, have 2 more on the shelf! Guess I‘m in tune this year!

https://nebulas.sfwa.org/2018-nebula-finalists-announced/

Leftcoastzen Which ones have you read?like? 4mo
Mitch I‘ve read Poppy War... it was dark and graphic, but I liked it. I‘ve also read Witchmark... that felt a little too light! I‘m heading into Spinning Silver next! 4mo
ReadingEnvy I've read one (The Calculating Stars) and have another (Blackfish City) on my Kindle. 4mo
DGRachel Nice! I have two on my shelves, but haven‘t read any of them. 😱 4mo
75 likes4 comments
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MisterWhitaker
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Pickpick

Wow. Wow wow WOW. What a read. Gripping and arresting and horrifying all at once. Be forewarned, there are some grizzly details about war, genocide, and an off page rape that I nearly had to fast forward past. All of this forces the reader to reconcile the actions of the protagonist with the horrors that drove her there.

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MamaGina
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Enjoying my current read! 📖

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thegirlwiththelibrarybag
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Pickpick

I really enjoyed this. In a weird way it kind of reminded me of the Alanna/Lioness quartet in that she is a girl struggling to succeed in a male dominated field. Looking forward to seeing where the next book ventures as things took rather a dark turn towards the end of this book...

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GivenLemons
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Pickpick

Not the easiest book to read, as it includes a frank depiction of massacres. But it was a fantastic book! I actually really enjoyed it and Rin‘s personal conflict was so vivid.

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thegirlwiththelibrarybag
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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This is maybe the third book I‘ve read in my entire life where PERIODS have happened... (this one, it‘s mentioned in the lioness quartet and vermilion)

CouronneDhiver 🙌🏽🙌🏽 5mo
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thegirlwiththelibrarybag
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Reasons to love Rin :

1. She decides to win a scholarship to go to school rather than marry a creepy old man
2. Thinks well regarded ‘classic‘ is hard to follow and verbose...

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Breanne1
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Mehso-so

It has taken me some time after reading this to post a review. I have mixed feelings because I loved the first half of the book and couldn‘t get enough and then I hit the part about the actual war and lost interest!! This makes no sense to me and I can‘t explain it, perhaps it was just the mood I was in while reading. Maybe, just maybe, I‘ll pick up the second book and fall back in love. ⭐️⭐️⭐️ and 1/2⭐️

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InBooksILive
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
This post contains spoilers
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WARNING - Very gruesome!

The massacre that happens in Golyn Niis... the awful things those Federation scum did to the people of that place... the children.. the babies.. not many books make me cry, like tears flowing, but having to read the evilness in detail.. man.. it made my stomach sick. I had to skip over some parts it was just too gruesome.

I could of done without that part. I definitely could of.

Just terrible..

Redwritinghood Agree! I don‘t know how this was considered YA with that level of graphic violence. 5mo
InBooksILive @Redwritinghood right? It's way too graphic for YA I think. 5mo
GivenLemons It‘s in the adult fiction section at my library, well away from the YA section 5mo
9 likes3 comments
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InBooksILive
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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I am really looking forward to reading this book! From what I've read so far, it's definitely going to live up to all the hype surrounding it.

I love a great orphan rises to greatness story and Rin sounds like she's going to be so great ❤

And I just love the cover! It's so simple but yet fierce!

67 likes1 stack add
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RealLifeReading
Poppy War | R F Kuang
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Kong Bak Pau (braised five-spice pork with steamed buns), stirfried garlicky green beans and this fun read about a young girl who enters an elite military academy. Now the country is at war and part of me wants it to go back to when they were still studying but its title is The Poppy War and as such, War it must be. But I must say, although I‘m just about halfway, it is an awesome read .

alvingregorio I had the same feeling. The beginning was dynamite. The story becomes engaging again later. Just have to go through that after-school lull. 5mo
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alvingregorio
Poppy War | R F Kuang
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Umm...yeah....so this is AMAZING! Just when there was a lull and I was considering DNFing, the story punched me in the face.

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RealLifeReading
Poppy War | R F Kuang
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Excited to start reading this!
Also, are you a library lover too? I co-host a #libraryloot meme on my blog. Come join in!
https://reallifereading.com/2019/01/02/library-loot-january-2-to-jan-9/

Vinjii I loved this one! 5mo
zembla What a CUTIE 5mo
114 likes3 stack adds2 comments
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Lisaw13
Poppy War | R F Kuang
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Up next on my #NewYearWhoDis list - still a few days early, but my library had it ready so what's a girl to do? 😋

monalyisha Cool! Looking forward to your review for this one! 6mo
mutlee The second half gets quite brutal. I‘m getting ready to start Nevernight, which I suspect will be dark and brutal, too! 6mo
19 likes2 comments
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BillBlume
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Couldn‘t resist getting this the other night when I found it on sale for 50% off. Been eager to read it, but figured I‘d have to borrow it from the library. Can‘t wait to start this one. #fantasy #ThePoppyWar #RFKuang

JSW Interested to hear your thoughts! 6mo
32 likes2 stack adds1 comment
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mountainsandlace
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Thanks again @Insightsintobooks ! I loved this book.i can't wait for the next one!

Insightsintobooks You're welcome. 6mo
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mountainsandlace
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Thank you so much @Insightsintobooks ! I cannot wait to read this!
#kindlitsy

Insightsintobooks You're welcome!! I hope you like it! 6mo
17 likes1 comment
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Redwritinghood
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Pickpick

A lot of YA books lately seem to me to follow a formula, but this was not one of those. Drawing from Chinese history and mythology, the author does a great job of world-building and character-development. A little drawn out, but good plot and pacing. Rather violent/gruesome in places, so don‘t read if you‘re squeamish. 3.5⭐️

78 likes3 stack adds
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Kmmsellers
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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My reading companion would rather I play with her, so she‘s going to stare at me until I cave.

Literary_Siren What a pretty girl! 7mo
JoScho 🖤🖤🖤 7mo
AlaMich Did it work? 🐶❤️ 7mo
Kmmsellers @AlaMich it totally worked! 😊 7mo
41 likes4 comments
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Angeles
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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I am afraid to start the second book of this series! The first one was so gruesome and made me consider if I would ever commit war atrocities, and I did not like the answer. Still, the cover is gorgeous. Maybe in a year or so😭

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Ostaff1
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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I got bored about 60% of the way through. Endless war is not my bag, and even the interesting magic system and historical fiction aspect could make up for it. #fantasy #YA

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JSW
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
Pickpick

This was an excruciating book for me to read: it‘s about war, and is just as dark, traumatic, harsh, and horrible as war is. Rin‘s hunger for power is also hard for me - I don‘t understand it, it frightens me. The power of the writing and the story make it a pick, but it‘s a doozy. Be careful with this one.

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taraWritesSci
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Pickpick

The Poppy War is an intense read I highly recommend to those who appreciate gritty fantasy that doesn't have a clear good vs evil in either the overarching story or the characters. Also, read the author's bio. By the time you reach a certain point in the story, her scholarly expertise is apparent. The grisly details is a reminder that while this story is fiction, it's based on extensive knowledge of humanity at it's worst.

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Ostaff1
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Sound familiar? “The Keju doesn‘t mean anything,” Rin said scathingly. “The Keju is a ruse to keep uneducated peasants right where they‘ve always been. You slip past the Keju, they‘ll find a way to expel you anyway. The Keju keeps the lower classes sedated. It keeps us dreaming. It‘s not a ladder for mobility; it‘s a way to keep people like me exactly where they were born. The Keju is a drug.”

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JSW
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Day 3 of Turkey and Pie day break. Pie and coffee for breakfast. The only acceptable breakfast for the day after Turkey and Pie Day.

emtobiasz Nice plates! (I have them too 😉) 7mo
JSW @emtobiasz great minds think alike 😍 7mo
33 likes2 comments
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JSW
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Day 2 of Turkey and Pie Day Break. It was a good day with Friendsgiving and turkey and mashed potatoes and pie. Now time for some mint tea (for a slightly full tummy lol) and a good book.

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BookInMyHands
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Pickpick

There were many things I enjoyed about this story. The world-building was fantastic, I thought racism was addressed throughout the story, and the action was engaging- mostly.

However, this story was too violent for me. At times I also found the main character unbelievably obtuse. I wanted a redemption story, but there was only revenge. Maybe with the rest of the series she‘ll get there.

#crossculturalstories
#teenfantasy

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DannyHattan
The Poppy War | R.F. Kuang
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Did you vote in the #goodreads #choiceawards in the #fantasy genre? If so what did you go for?? The Poppy War was great for me and gets my vote 😊👌🏻👍🏻

Mitch Me too! 7mo
Melissa_J I voted in the earlier rounds, but I haven‘t read any of the finalists so I opted out. I do have this on my Kindle so I‘m happy to see you enjoyed it. 7mo
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