The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang

The Poppy War

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 ...

Details The Poppy War

TitleThe Poppy War
Release DateMay 1st, 2018
PublisherHarper Voyager
GenreFantasy, Historical, Historical Fiction, Adult, Fiction

Reviews The Poppy War

  • Emily May
    “But I warn you, little warrior. The price of power is pain.” Holy hell, what did I just read??➽ A fantasy military school➽ A rich world based on modern Chinese history➽ Shamans and gods➽ Detailed characterization leading to unforgettable characters➽ Adorable, opium-smoking mentorsThat's a basic list, but this book is all of that and SO MUCH MORE. I know 100% that The Poppy War will be one of my best reads of 2018.Isn't it just so g...
  • Emily (Books with Emily Fox)
    Hands down Best Fantasy of 2018!This was such an amazing read and cannot wait to get my hands on the rest of the trilogy. The books will be insta buys for me!War, school, magic, no freaking romance... This book kept me on my toes.I have no doubt this series will become huge and I'll make sure to rave about it until you all read it!PS. Just wanted to add that there are trigger warnings for... well everything. Self harm, drug use, rape, etc. It's a...
  • Petrik
    ARC provided by the publisher—Harper Voyager—in exchange for an honest review.I have no doubt this will end up being the best fantasy debut of the year. No no, scratch that understatement. Ladies and gentlemen, let me present to you a review for The Poppy War, a book that will go down as one of the best grimdark/military fantasy debuts of all time.Once in a while, there comes a book that you just know will be a fantastic book just from the pr...
  • Em
    A really good book has a beginning, a middle, and then it absolutely ends you. The Poppy War is a really good book. The kind of book that makes you want to take part in some ritualistic bonfire—it doesn’t even have to be ritualistic as long as you get to yell and scream and dance around it.I wish my pupils were at least heart-shaped so I could more accurately demonstrate my passion but if I ever die suddenly and don't have time to say anythin...
  • Khanh, first of her name, mother of bunnies
    The Nikara believed in strictly defined social roles, a rigid hierarchy that all were locked into at birth. Everything had its own place under heaven. Princelings became Warlords, cadets became soldiers, and orphan shopgirls from Tikany should be content with remaining orphan shopgirls from Tikany. Well, fuck the heavenly order of things. Epic. Spectacular. Breathtaking. This is the one of the best books I have ever read in my adult life. I liter...
  • R.F. Kuang
    Hi, there!THE POPPY WAR is my book, so I'm obviously a bit biased. I wrote it over three months during the winter of 2015, signed with an agent in February 2016, and sold the book to Harper Voyager during my birthday weekend in May 2016. It's been nearly two years since then, so I'm terribly excited for it to finally go out in the world! I'm going to use this space to tell you a little about THE POPPY WAR in case you're wondering whether you migh...
  • Melanie
    ARC provided by the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. “But I warn you, little warrior. The price of power is pain.” First and foremost, please go read one of my best friends in this entire world’s review: Petrik’s review is not only amazing, he is also an ownvoices Chinese reviewer. Next, I just want to warn you guys that this is a very dark book that is heavily inspired by the Nanking Massacre. Please use cautio...
  • Bookdragon Sean
    The Poppy War is not a book to be missed by fantasy fans and especially those who like it infused with copious amounts of blood, darkness and misery. This isn’t some fluffy little tale about teenage romance and personal discovery (although it may seem that way in the beginning.) This is a book about reality. Now that’s an odd thing to say isn’t it? Reality? We’re talking about fantasy here. But do let me explain. This is a book about the ...
  • James Lafayette Tivendale
    I received an advanced reader copy of The Poppy War from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I would like to thank R. F. Kuang and Harper Voyager for this opportunity. Rin is a war orphan who works at her foster parents' shop and their main income is created by dealing drugs. Only just into her teenage years, Rin is offered a proposal to marry and bear children for an unattractive gentleman three times her age who has no redeeming qua...
  • Mary ~Ravager of Tomes~
    Actual Rating: 4.5 StarsI can't believe this is a debut. I can't believe the author is in her early twenties. I can't believe humanity's history with war and violence is so deeply disturbing.RTC.
  • Connor
    My Video Review: novel started out so strong for me, and I can't believe how little I was enjoying it toward the end. This novel reads like two separate people wrote it. I loved the first 40 percent. I know people have compared The Poppy War to The Kingkiller Chronicle because of the academy setting and the fact that the main characters don't have much going on personality-wise. I get that criticism, but I was just...
  • ❄️Nani❄️
    4.5⭐Holy wow. That was fantastic. Dark, intense, chilling and so much more. This book is NOT your run of the mill fantasy. Be mindful of trigger warnings for... well, everything. 4.5⭐️Holy wow. That was fantastic. Dark, intense, chilling and so much more. This book is NOT your run of the mill fantasy. Be mindful of trigger warnings for... well, everything.
  • Piera
    This book was incredible and is a new favourite fantasy! *Would not recommend for young/sensitive readers - very graphicReview available on my channel -
  • Emma
    I'm not going to lie, I struggled with this one. Right up to about 45% in I was wondering how the hell anyone was giving this 5 stars - not only was it not grimdark, it was borderline YA, and a rather blatant rip off of The Name of the Wind, including: super clever, good at EVERYTHING main character who gets a place at top university/college and proceeds to be trained/confused/challenged by quirky professor/lore master who is the only one who bel...
  • Hamad
    This review and other non-spoilery reviews can be found @The Book PrescriptionBR with The EmpressWar doesn’t determine who’s right. War determines who remains.”🌟 The Poppy War, more like a war on tropes. Seriously people, this was an annihilation for all the tropes I read before.🌟 I am forever Thankful for Lily for suggesting a BR of this. I have been skipping a lot of books that I think are hyped but not to my liking. This was among ...
  • Mogsy (MMOGC)
    5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum I find it difficult to write a review for a book that I loved wholeheartedly, mainly because of all the emotions I’m feeling and it’s as if every single one of them is vying to burst forth from me all at the same time. The Poppy War is one of those books. There’s so much I want to say about it, like why it’s so awesome, why it spoke so strongly to me, and ...
  • Kaitlin
    *I was sent this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review*First up, trigger warnings for:- Rape- Self Harm- Substance abuse- Torture- Genocide- RacismYes, this is one pretty daaaaark book!I am so pleased I requested this one because it turned out to be exactly the kind of Asian-inspired fantasy I like. It's a story which starts in a rural province following a young war orphan, Rin. Rin lives with her adoptive family, work...
  • Scott Hitchcock
    Although not listed as book 1 I hope this is a series. What a great opening statement. This book is a GrimDark and Historical Fiction blend that delivers on both an action and empathetic level. If you're expect YA because the characters are young you'll be very disappointed. This is no more YA than Broken Kingdom and Jorg or Nevernight and Mia. These characters are dark, pained and utterly compelling. The author takes you into their pain and the ...
  • Meagan
    "This is why we are strong. We draw our strength from centuries and centuries of unforgotten injustices. Our task-- our very reason for being-- is to make those deaths mean something. After us, there will be no Speer. Only a memory." Things I liked: 》The intertwining of the magic system and with religion. I love unique magic systems and this aspect of the world was so interesting. "The Phoenix isn't only the god of fire," he said. "It is the ...
  • Hannah
    That was seriously impressive; I knew I needed to read this as soon as I saw the brilliant cover. The book has also garnered a serious amount of buzz and as such I was beyond thrilled to have the chance to read this early. I was then a bit apprehensive when the first reviews came in and they all emphasized the dark nature of this book – I usually like my fantasy to be not super violent. And don’t get me wrong, this book (especially its second...
  • Dannii Elle
    Listen to the hype. The hype does not lie.Rin is an impoverished orphan from the outer-edges of her realm. There is nothing particularly exemplary about her as an individual and nothing particularly note-worthy about her life in general, as sorrowful as her circumstances might be. But all that is about to change.Eager for an interruption to her mundane existence and desperate for an alteration to her future fate, that would see her wed to the hig...
  • Acqua
    2.5 stars.The Poppy War is a high fantasy book inspired by the Sino-Japanese wars. It's told from the point of view of Rin, a peasant from the Rooster Province who, through hard work and sleepless nights, managed to get into Sinegard, an elite military academy.I really wanted to like this. In a way, I did, but I also really didn't like this. To start making sense, I'll tell you a quick summary of my thoughts: this book is divided into three parts...
  • Paul O'Neill
    Upon reflection, downgrading to three stars. Hmmm... this is such a hard book to review. I’m giving it a tentative [four] stars now but I may change my mind later. The only reason it’s getting an extra star is that the story acts as a pretty fantastic metaphor and has a message, which all good books do. There were three parts to this book, and they didn’t blend very well wih each other at all. Part one was fantastic, part two would have bee...
  • Emily
    Okay, so I LOVED this. Absolutely loved it. The first half of the book feels reminiscent of lots of school-based fantasy books, if a TOUCH darker (we see some classism, racism, colorism, etc. in ways that are significantly more prominent than other books that use this same structure). We follow Rin, a compelling protagonist that falls just shy of being a Mary Sue in much the way Kvothe does in The Name of the Wind--if you had issues with Kvothe, ...
  • Thomas
    I wanted to fanboy this book so hard but ended up only loving parts of it. I respect R.F. Kuang for her willingness to take risks and address serious topics with her massive debut. She portrays war – its brutality, its victims, its consequences – so well, showing how it decimates landscapes and communities and individual characters’ hearts. I appreciate how she addressed oppression through highlighting Rin’s experiences of colorism, sexis...
  • *Thea 'WookieMama' Wilson*
    OH MY GOD!All I have to say about this book is that it is simply STUNNING!For a debut fantasy novel this work is beautiful,. The writing, the world building, the characters, the pace..... everything is just perfection and I think that if you're in love with fantasy like I am then this is THE must read book of the year.What are you waiting for...... go get a copy and get reading my friend, you will not regret it!
  • Justine
    The story here was complex and nicely paced. I really liked the multilayered and nuanced characters; they were probably my favourite part. I'm quite impressed this is a debut novel and look forward to what Kuang does next.This starts as a martial training school book but rapidly evolves into a bloody war story replete with atrocities of every kind. As such, I'm not sure that categorizing this as a YA book is entirely appropriate, even though the ...