Title: Song of the Current
Author: Sarah Tolcser
Narrator: Stephanie Willing
Running Time: 9 hours, 42 minutes
TRIGGER WARNINGS: N/A (Note: please inform me if any trigger warning needs to be added and I will update the post)
Goodreads Summary: Caroline Oresteia is destined for the river. For generations, her family has been called by the river god, who has guided their wherries on countless voyages throughout the Riverlands. At seventeen, Caro has spent years listening to the water, ready to meet her fate. But the river god hasn’t spoken her name yet—and if he hasn’t by now, there’s a chance he never will.
Caro decides to take her future into her own hands when her father is arrested for refusing to transport a mysterious crate. By agreeing to deliver it in exchange for his release, Caro finds herself caught in a web of politics and lies, with dangerous pirates after the cargo—an arrogant courier with a secret—and without the river god to help her. With so much at stake, Caro must choose between the life she always wanted and the one she never could have imagined for herself.
From debut author Sarah Tolcser comes an immersive and romantic fantasy set along the waterways of a magical world with a headstrong heroine determined to make her mark.
HOLY WOW! Talk about an awesome book! Song of the Current fulfilled all of my needs–the ones I knew I had, as well as the ones I didn’t know I had! Now this is what I call a great book! I’m pretty positive you’ll hear me raving about this one for the rest of time! With a fast paced, fun plot, a diverse, lovable main character (and awesome secondary characters too!), and a wondrous world, Song of the Current has been marked as a new favorite in my book! Here’s what I loved about this book…
Diversity In A Fantasy (a.k.a. I Think I’ve Died And Gone To Heaven)
One of my favorite aspects of Song of the Current is that Caro herself is a person of color! And she’s mixed race, like me! And no, I don’t mean some silly white/white mixed race like “Oh, my mom was elvish” or some sh*t–her father has light skin and red hair and her mother has dark skin and black hair (and Caro, herself, has dark skin and curly, red hair). As a mixed race person myself, I loved Tolcser’s portrayal of a mixed race heroine. Caro’s being mixed race didn’t play a major role in the narrative, but little sprinkles of it were bought up here and there when it was natural to be brought up. For instance, Caro mentioned how she sometimes gets funny looks for being mixed race. In this way, Tolcser subtly portrays a society much devoid of racial bias, but not totally free of it, much reflective of our own world.
A Feminist Fantasy
Another aspect that I loved about Song of the Current was the feminism! Caro is an incredibly feminist character, but not in an in-your-face, preachy kinda way! Anytime someone says something like “It can’t be done! No man can/has ever done it!”, Caro is basically like, “I am no man!” And we also see other women in powerful positions! Caro’s mom is the top negotiator in a powerful merchant family business and there’s also a female wherrywoman who has an all female crew. It was nice to see women living in a slightly patriarchal society who shrugged off traditional roles and went for what they wanted.
Oh–and there’s also the fact that consent is brought up in Song of the Current! I loved that this was a thing, guys! When one guy tries to kiss Caro without her consent, she slaps him and pulls a knife on him before basically telling him that it doesn’t matter what kind of girl he thinks she is, it’s not okay to kiss her without her consent! The moment had me screaming, “Yes! You go, girl!”
Life, Liberty, And The Pursuit of Privateering!
As someone who loves the history of the American Revolution and learning all about it, I loved the inspiration that Tolcser took from the American Revolution. In Song of the Current, there is a revolutionary who has published a pamphlet on why the emperor should be overthrown and replaced with a democratically elected government which worked for the rights of the people. Remind you of anyone? Also, Tolcser didn’t forget how the American Revolution was very based on classism and attempting to get rid of it. In Tolcser’s world, the revolutionary works for the rights of the working class, just like American revolutionaries did! I loved this aspect so much, it was a nice Easter egg for history buffs like me.
Fantastical Fantasy Fun
I think it’s pretty clear that I absolutely adored Song of the Current! I’ll be pushing this one at everyone for eons to come, lol! Filled with swashbuckling adventures and endearing characters, Song of the Current is a wildly fun ride that anyone can enjoy! 5/5 stars