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Steel Crow Saga

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  3,324 ratings  ·  846 reviews
Four destinies collide in a unique fantasy world of war and wonders, where empire is won with enchanted steel and magical animal companions fight alongside their masters in battle.

A soldier with a curse
Tala lost her family to the empress’s army and has spent her life avenging them in battle. But the empress’s crimes don’t haunt her half as much as the crimes Tala has commi
Paperback, 528 pages
Published September 24th 2019 by Del Rey Books
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Kara Jorgensen There are multiple romances in the story as there are multiple main characters. The main two romances currently are f/f and m/f.
I.M. As an Indian, I'm pretty sure it was meant to be some south asian country (most likely India cuz its the one more ppl know). Will have to say, the nam…moreAs an Indian, I'm pretty sure it was meant to be some south asian country (most likely India cuz its the one more ppl know). Will have to say, the names were really weird (there was one last name which was both queen and god?? It sounded kinda weird)(less)

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Average rating 3.94  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,324 ratings  ·  846 reviews

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Nov 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
ARC provided by the publisher—Gollancz—in exchange for an honest review.

4.5/5 stars

Multi-cultural, diverse characters & superbly character-driven narrative; Steel Crow Saga is a brilliant Asian/anime-inspired fantasy.

As an Asian who loves watching anime and reading mangas and SFF novels, Steel Crow Saga is a novel that felt as if it was written for me. Steel Crow Saga has been published for more than a month now, and I feel like I’ve sinned—Sloth—for postponing reading this book. Full Metal Alch
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
This effing book broke me in half and made me soar!!

Just when I’m down about reading, I find a freaking gem! This book is like nothing I have ever read before and it gave me all of the feels!!

I love every single one of these characters immensely!

What reeled me in from the summary was the animal stuff. I mean those who know me could have figured that one out! But there is so much more to this story and it ripped my heart out.

The book is about family, war, vengeance, bonding with animals and t
Sep 06, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
pierce brown tweeted about this book, and his word is law as far as i am concerned, so i went and tracked down a copy as fast as i could. and you should, too!

many reviews are saying this story is pokemon meets avatar: the last airbender. and as i read this, i could sort of see where they got that idea, but i dont think really think the similarities are strong enough to pitch this story as such. this is wildly imaginative in its own right and hard to compare to anything else. its unique and quite
Apr 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
EDIT 6.20.2020: Hi all, unfortunately I have to retract my support of this book because several women have come forward on Twitter stating that he is a serial harasser. I believe these women. I don't have much more to say so for a more eloquent and thorough statement please see Sahlea's statement.

Original Review:

Okay, I’m surprised that my Goodreads hive mind (that’s ya’ll, ya’ll are the best) hadn’t alerted me to this book iconic book earlier. Steel Crow Saga is a super queer Asian-inspired yo
I never wrote a full review here but I have recommended this book loudly and vocally for months. I now want to just as loudly rescind my support of the author and of his book.

Believe victims always.
ARC provided by netgalley

Okay it's not bad but it's gotten extremely boring and I can't read any further. The starts great and all and I'm sure loads of you will enjoy it.
Maybe I'd try it some other time.
“sanbuna lore had countless monsters, but the worst of them wore a human face.”

highly entertaining and eventually heart-wrenching modern fantasy centering on the aftermath of war.

steel crow saga is set in an industrialized world in which a number of countries are slowly recovering from the repercussions of imperialism and colonization. at the heart of the story are four main characters who all take on a POV at some point, and show some great character arcs and growth throughout.

Apr 29, 2020 marked it as to-read
Thanks to Leigh Bardugo, I am now strangely drawn to any book with the word 'crow' in the title. Let's see how this goes... ...more
Aug 20, 2019 added it
[Update: I read this novel prior to the allegations that came to light in June 2020 regarding this author’s harassment and gaslighting of POC in the industry, and want to make it clear that I do not support or condone that behavior. I’m rescinding my rating as well as my initial review that originally went up here in August 2019.]
April (Aprilius Maximus)
“We all have such finite time, even when the spirits are kind.”

representation: own voices asian inspired (author is Filipino), asian inspired worlds and characters (Sanbu Islands = Phillipines inspired; Tomoda = Japanese inspired; Shang = Chinese inspired; Jeongson = Korean inspired; Dahal = Indian inspired)
Queer characters (gay, bi, lesbian, trans), f/f relationship, m/m relationship.

[trigger warnings are listed at the bottom of this review and may contain spoilers]


Even though I really,
prag ♻
please don't support this author! here are some alternative recommendations of fantasy books set in asia and/or with queer characters:

- Jade City
- The Poppy War
- The Afterward
- Not Your Sidekick
- The Priory of the Orange Tree
- The Gilded Wolves
- Spin the Dawn
- The Empress of Salt and Fortune
- Girl, Serpent, Thorn
Edit (as of 22 June 2020):
In line with my statement regarding the harassment allegations involving Paul Krueger, I am rescinding my support of Steel Crow Saga and the rest of his books. I have removed my rating accordingly, and I no longer recommend this book.


Note: I am an #ownvoices reviewer for the Filipino representation in this book.


I am not exaggerating when I say t
Apr 20, 2021 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
Steel Crow Saga by Paul Krueger is a standalone young adult epic fantasy. And of course my review is going to come with yet another warning label that this is probably a case of the old saying of it’s not you, it’s me as I do seem to be in the minority on this one yet again.

So Steel Crow Saga is a magical fantasy with four different characters, Tala, Jimuro, Xiulan and Lee, the soldier, prince, detective, and thief that of course cross paths and must work together to save the world. There’s of c
Shaun Hutchinson
Mar 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Loved it. I wasn’t sure about the idea at first, but I was quickly drawn in. Great characters, great world building, super queer.
If my people run from the horror of what we’ve done, in time we would forget. And if we forget, we might one day do it again. Your peoples do not have the luxury of forgetting how you’ve suffered.

On my blog.

Rep: Asian inspired characters and settings (China, Japan, and I think India, Philippines & Korea maybe), female and male bi mcs, lesbian mc, gay side character (fairly major), mlm trans side character (fairly major)

Galley provided by publisher

This is probably the best book I have rea
Sep 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2020
Buddy read with my amazing friend Naomi Waters! Thank you for reading this book with me.

Well, this was an unexpectedly enjoyable read.

Going into this book, I wasn’t expecting much to be honest. I’ve heard some people say that this book is a mix of Pokémon and avatar the last airbender and the latter sold it for me.
It didn’t have much atla vibes to it though.
The four kingdoms could be interpreted as the “four nations” but other than that they were nothing alike. No one had elemental powers but
Samm | Sassenach the Book Wizard
Okay I can't for the life of me put together a good summary of this book. There's just so much going on, In a rare twist, I think my favourite part of this book was the wrap up...where authors notoriously let me down. It's cool, it's complex, it can be dense at some parts but I overall really enjoyed this ...more
Fadwa (Word Wonders)
TW: violence, death, dismemberment, murder, mind control

this book! THIS BOOK!! THIS BOOOOOOOOOK!!! There was so much packed into it that i will most definitely struggled doing the usual concise goodreads review so i'm tempted to be a coward and just NOT do it at all.

First of all, in case that wasn't obvious, I loved it. I need to sit with it for a little bit but this book is a VERY strong contender for my top ten books of the year. I took me a little while to get through, just because in the fir
laurel [the suspected bibliophile]
The war may be over, but the victors will reap the spoils...if they can get them.

Tala may hate the Iron Prince, but she's bound by duty to bring him to his homeland and put him on the throne. Except there is a splintersoul on their trail, intent on murdering her, Jimuro and everyone else in his path. And following behind them all are detective Xiulan and her new partner, the small-time criminal Lee.

The four are bound to meet—but can they keep it together long enough to defeat the new evil that w
Aug 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Hats off to what is one of the best books I've read all year. Let me tell you: I've been in a really weird slump where I'm reading things and kind of enjoying them but not really loving anything, and then came along this book. Not to be dramatic, but it literally reminded me why I love reading. There are some books you can sink into with such relish that you forget you're reading, and you're just along for the ride. Steel Crow Saga is that book.

→ plot & pacing ←

I was hooked from the very first
Jun 18, 2020 marked it as no-support-at-all
June 19, 2020: Paul Krueger is a harasser. I have not read this or any of his books but have shown interest in the past. However, I would no longer be supporting, recommending, or reading his works. ...more
Sep 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing

This book is so good, I am just sitting here quietly crying because it is over and I don't have more pages with these characters. THESE LOVABLE FOOLS.
The first major takeaway I have about Steel Crow Saga is that it’s unnecessarily long.

To steal a phrasing from one of the characters, it was a long walk to a very anime battle scene.

The way this book is written falls into very detailed descriptions. There’s not a lot of room for the reader’s imagination in way characters think, feel, or how the world works. Steel Crow Saga is written from four perspectives and by the time you reach the end of the book, you know pretty well how each of them think
Star Rating: —> 5 Stars

I loved this beyond words— I really can’t put my finger on exactly the words to say to fully express the extent of my emotions, at the moment

I can say that I fell so unexpectedly, madly, head-over heels in love with this book. I mean, I knew that i’d probably like it, given its roots roughly based in asian history, & its fantasy elements which seem like something out of the pages of a beloved manga series. I mean, its pretty much a guarantee that i’ll love absolutely any
Monte Price
2020 update

tweet 1 tweet thread 2

It's recently come to my attention that Paul Krueger, author of Steel Crow Saga is a sketch man who has harrassed a number of people in the publishing industry. obviously at the time that i read this book and wrote this review, i was unaware, but felt the need to stop by and let people know that I no longer feel comfortable recommending his work to people.


I did not expect this book to have the impact that it did.

I honestly can't remember the last time that I
Let it be known that in my next life I want the power to shadepact. Thank you.
Aug 29, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, net-galley
I have to say- I was a little disappointed with this. I’ll be up front and say that the premise: Pokemon meets Airbender, is in no way my thing- so your mileage may vary. In my defense I didn’t see it marketed that way until well after I started reading it, but the comparison is legitimate enough, and the Pokemon part was a lot of fun.

However I couldn’t shake the feeling that the motivations for these characters and their countries didn’t always make sense. When the book starts we are with Diman
Meh, I struggled with this one. Another reviewer said it perfectly, beautiful written but it just went on and on. I found 1 page that caught my attention in about every 20 pages. Can you have too much, yup it was just way too much unnecessary stuff for me.

I received Steel Crow Saga from Random House Publishing Group - Ballantine - Del Rey. This is my honest and voluntary review. < b>Steel Crow Saga is set for publication September 24, 2019.
Sep 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
A solid 4.5 in my opinion but slightly fell short of a 5.

I don’t think I even knew about this book until about a month ago. I think stumbled upon it by accident in someone’s blogpost about upcoming Asian inspired fantasy releases, and I was immediately fascinated. And while it took me a bit to immerse myself in it, I am so glad to have discovered this book and gotten hold of the ARC.

The world building is one aspect that impressed me a lot. As the author is Filipino-American, I was expecting some
Mar 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020
God, I don't even know what to say about this book. These beautiful, lovely characters in this heartbreaking world recovering from colonization and war just took me by complete surprise. While it took me while to really make time for this book (though not to get into it, it had me hooked from the first chapter), I'm so glad I finally pushed my other books aside to just read and enjoy this.

This book was so wonderfully crafted in so many ways, I could spend paragraphs commending each aspect of it.
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Paul Krueger is a fantasy author and lapsed Chicagoan currently living in Los Angeles. His bartending-and-magic debut novel, LAST CALL AT THE NIGHTSHADE LOUNGE, was published by Quirk Books in June of 2016. His next, STEEL CROW SAGA, is forthcoming in fall of 2019 from Del Rey Books.

His non-writing hobbies include cooking, D&D, karaoke, and collecting comics. He's also a musician, fronting the Adv

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