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Mkombozi: The Redeemer, Savior, and Destroyer

December 29, 2016

Mkombozi was supposed to be Theia's savior, but destroyed it instead. Now, it has fallen to Eden to save Earth from the same fate that befell Theia, whether she likes it or not.

Eden Reid, protagonist of Daughther of Gods and Shadows, is a twenty-four-year-old woman from Brooklyn, New York. Unfortunately for her, that is where her normalcy begins and ends. Eden is the human incarnation of Mkombozi--a fierce warrior who died fighting a formidable demon. Eden is prophesied to triumph where Mkombozi failed, and for some, there is just no questioning it. However, Eden questions everything, and she tries her hardest to reject the expectations that have been placed on her since childhood. The only problem is that the demon has been reformed and plans to reshape the Earth in its own image. Unless Eden can find the strength to survive and fight, it will be a sad day for all those who oppose the demon.
My best friend, a fellow library worker, recommended this book to me. He prefers high fantasy novels, and I generally read Horror and SciFi novels, or Cozy Mysteries. However, my bestie knew to recommend this novel to me because when I do read fantasy novels, I generally like contemporary and low fantasy books. I would compare this book to the Agatha Raisin and Cat Who books that are on my shelf: it's enjoyable, re-readable, and a quick-and-easy read.
I really like the fact that main characters are ethnically diverse, and that no character seems to be a "token" anything. I like the fact that each character presented fit smoothly into the environment; the author didn't have to hit the reader over the head with the fact that she is creating a ethnically diverse cast. I could easily walk down Church Street and find each one of these characters represented, except for the trolls and mermaids. It has always puzzled me that Fantasy and SciFi novels could have cat people, shapeshifters, werewolves, and sentient squid tentacles, but humans of color do not appear to exist. I know this might not matter to some people, but for me, representation matters because there is more than one type of human.
The one thing that I loved the most about the novel was Eden (yes, I have read books where I have hated the main protagonist). She is just as shocked and confused about the things going on around her as the reader is, even though she was raised hearing about the craziness she is left to deal with. Her preference would be to Netflix and chill, but she has to reconnect with her inner badass and become Buffy, Willow, and the Winchesters, all in approximately two weeks. No pressure.
The only criticism I have of the story is that some parts are predictable. It is obvious that Ms. Brooks was setting up the characters and settings for this series, so hopefully the other novels will not have this issue. This is one of those books that wraps up nicely enough to be a stand-alone, but is open enough to leave room for more.

NPL does not currently own the second book in the series--City of Dark Creatures, which is available in a two-in-one Kindle edition via Amazon (along with the "director's cut" of Daughter of Gods and Shadows). Feel free to suggest that we add it to our collection using our Suggest a Purchase form.