Genre: Historical Fiction, Romance
Published on: September 4th, 2018 by St. Martin’s Press
Pages: 400 (Kindle Edition)
**I received an e-copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review**
There’s so much to talk about when it comes to this book, so it’s not a surprise I’ve written a lengthy review about it. It’s been a while since I last felt this burst of passion and excitement in making a review. I never expected that this book would pull out those emotions in me! Sarah Bird’s book is one of those books that grips you. So I guess I’m adding historical fiction in my list of weakness now.
Cathy Williams was raised with the mindset of a warrior. She was not to consider herself a slave, for she was a descendant of an African queen. Rather, she must think that they’re kept captive in a farm in Little Dixie, Missouri. When Union General Philip Henry Sheridan showed up with his men, ravaged and burned the farm she was born in and took her in as his cook’s assistant, Cathy found herself alone in a harsh world, but closer to freedom. Her survival depended on her wit. Just as the war ended, an opportunity at being a part of the United States Army arose. Cathy knew she was born for it. Having found ways to hide her true nature, she joined the ranks of men.
Daughter of a Daughter of a Queen by Sarah Bird is like the tale of Mulan. Inspired from the true life story of Cathy Williams, the first African-American woman to enlist in the United States Army, this book tells the tale of hope, a discovery of one’s strength, and to an extent, a rags to riches story. But unlike Mulan, this is no story for those who look for fairy tales.
I have TWO reasons to read Daughter of a Daughter of A Queen:
- The book cover. The color palette is sooo beautiful in this one. It has this gorgeous vintage effect to it and what stops you from reaching for it?? On a closer inspection, the left side shows a soldier’s blue suit while on the right, there’s a frilly/lacy clothing, probably part of a woman’s garment (this is what I am seeing but please correct if I’m wrong!). I once thought that the parchment paper at the center meant pirates were involved in the stories. LOL. How far away can my imagination go???
- The title. I mean, read the title again if it isn’t a catchy one. In all honesty, I was actually looking forward to read about castles and princes and/or princesses and “Your Highnesses”. Another LOL moment.
With that said, I must have missed reading the synopsis. All those expectations are sooo out of line and very out of topic. Oh, man.
Sarah Bird’s fantastic writing will deliver emotions right to your door step. The story has that capability to bring you back to the past, as if you’re living there, flesh and bone, amid soldiers. Although most would find it uncomfortable, one particular thing that I enjoyed in the book is the informality and accent and how the characters speak. I love accents and would sometimes watch vloggers do the “Accent Challenge” tag so reading this book had me acting out like I got the accent too. It also has these blank spaces where curse words should be and filling out those spaces with the curse word I see fit somehow makes it fun. Being creative with your “cursed” adjective is hilarious, trust me. Just be creative 😉
Each character were interestingly written and had their own strength and essence in them. But I would like to highlight the two characters I liked the most:
Cathy Williams. There is so much to talk about Cathy William’s character but I’m not sure if I can cover all of it. Cathy Williams (Williams Cathay – her enlisted name) is a character to love. She has this fierce, hopeful, kind, passionate, strong heart within her. Cathy’s voice is clearly heard throughout the book. Cunning and will are her two mighty strengths in surviving the field of men around her. I felt her struggling and getting bamboozled through her life. I felt her disappointment everytime she was fooled. But she isn’t a giver. She fights. Simply put, Cathy Williams is a tough-skinned, kind-hearted woman.
Solomon. Another favourite character. He is straightforward but he has his point. Which is also good, in my opinion, because in a world where war is the main event, you can’t just say “Ah, it’s a world of unicorns and rainbows”. You can’t sugarcoat reality like that. It’s a tough world and the way to survive is facing what’s in front of you.
If I were to rate the plot, it would be an 8 out of 10. You’d think that the plot is where the book’s highest thrilling moment is but really, it’s about the aftermath of the plot. Where the story should give you the relaxing that you need, NO, IT HAD TO KEEP YOUR HEART GALLOPING. Not sure if I’m hearing things, but it feels like the book is purring in my head, “You’d think I’ll let you sleep tonight, don’tcha? Wait till you finish me.” Well, darn it but someone began cutting onions beside me because I am not crying. Nope. You are.
Anyhow, this review is not enough to explain how fantastic this book, and justice can only be brought to it if you read it. So go and grab Daughter of A Daughter of A Queen now!
“I wear what I please, I do what I please, Back home, my mama, she ran the place. She’s the daughter of an African queen. And that makes me the daughter of a daughter of a queen.”