Title: Wonder Woman: Warbringer
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Genre: YA fantasy
Status: Book 1 of DC Icons
She will become a legend but first she is Diana, Princess of the Amazons. And her fight is just beginning…
Diana is desperate to prove herself to her warrior sisters. But when the opportunity comes, she throws away her chance at glory and breaks Amazon law to save a mere mortal, Alia Keralis. With this single heroic act, Diana may have just doomed the world.
Alia is a Warbringer – a descendant of the infamous Helen of Troy, fated to bring about an age of bloodshed and misery. Diana and Alia will face an army of enemies, mortal and divine, determined to destroy or possess the Warbringer.
To save the world, they must stand side by side against the tide of war.
I hadn’t seen the movie before I read the book as I’m not really a DC or Marvel fan. I veer towards rom-coms. But there was—is—a lot of hype around both the movie and the book so when I saw it listed on Amazon I immediately bought it.
Since I hadn’t seen the movie, I was completely clueless about everything. I think I would have grasped the many names and concepts of the island Themyscira if I was already familiar with the terms from the movie. Since I wasn’t I was REALLY confused in the beginning.
However, I DID see the movie after reading the book and I can say that only the very basics of the setting is used. There is not relation between the movie plot and the book plot. The book is almost like AU.
Diana is the only person in the island untested in war and she strives to prove her worth in the island. One day she saves a human whose boat blew up near Themyscira’s shore and it turns out that Alia is curse. Alia is a Warbringer.
Since Diana is always looking to prove herself and do a heroic act, she decides to save the world AND Alia by trying to purge the curse out of her. Despite knowing that it’s a huge risk, she went for it.
It’s the people who never learn the word impossible who make history, because they’re the ones who keep trying.
What I liked:
- The diversity. It wasn’t into-your-face diversity just to show that it’s represented, but we saw it through the characters’ eyes because of the discrimination. Alia received different treatment in public, her hair nuisance was also mentioned, Alia’s best friend Nim was so unapologetically bisexual—I loved all of it.
- I LOVED NIM. She’s my favourite character. I loved her personality, her zest, her friendship with Alia, her immediate acceptance of Diana and basically how she just owned herself and knew that she’s awesome. I loved that.
- I liked Alia and Diana’s friendship. The book is based so much on the bond between these two and it warmed my heart. The exchanges between them when Diana was experiencing the modern world was really entertaining.
Alia tried to restrain a grin. “Stop fondling the deodorants.”
“But they look like jewels!”
- Speaking of, just Diana experiencing modern world was very entertaining. Her being hit on by a guy in the subway was so funny! I cracked up.
- I loved the way the plot twists shocked me. I did NOT see any of them coming. I legit gasped.
- The girl bonding in this book was love. Nim, Alia and Diana becoming friends and growing close made me so happy. I love when books portray positive and healthy friendships between girls.
What I didn’t like:
The twist at the end took my breath away and broke my heart, but other than the fact that it took me aback, I did not like it. I had made up my mind about a certain thing throughout the book and in the end it blew up. Also, the twist revealing part was a little confusing? I read it thrice—once normally, second to make sure I read correctly and third, slowly, to actually understand what was happening.
I liked it. The book was pretty slow until about 150 pages but I got really into it after that. The slow beginning and the twist are the reason I didn’t give 5/5. Definitely recommend picking this up whether you’re a DC fan or not.