Book Review: Ring Shout by P. Djèlí Clark (four stars)

Book Review: Ring Shout (The Balance of Power #1) by P. Djèlí Clark (four stars)

“My point remains, we must dare to imagine a more equal world.” “Imagining a thing don’t make it so.”

A story superficially like—but totally unlike—many of its contemporaries. Clark sees the anguish and hate clearly but also sees that hate and revenge is not the answer. Maybe it’s justice. Maybe it’s redemption.

“We’re not asking you to switch sides. We’re offering to come over to you.” “What?” “Be our champion. Lead our armies. Give your people the one thing they lack—” “Hate?” “Power.”

Successfully combines historical elements leading up his 1922 apocalypse. Real events lend this supernatural fantasy instant credibility. Something in here to offend everyone. Good job.

“The enemy, they are the Lie. Plain and simple. The Lie running around pretending to be Truth.”

The accents make it hard reading, but the patois is essential for grounding the characters and story. Having established who’ who, he could have eased off as a mercy to the readers.

“Devil wouldn’t be the devil if he didn’t know how to tempt.”

(2021 Hugo Award Novella finalist)