This is a retelling of the legend of Mulan – the girl who becomes a soldier to assume her deceased father’s duties in war. This is the 9th book in the Hagenheim series by Melanie Dickerson.
My 15 year old granddaughter suggested I read this series earlier this year. I read all 9 books in the series in the past few months. They are all fairy tale retellings (at least loosely) and they all have a Christian element to them.
I really enjoyed this book. The Hagenheim series started out strong for me, but around book 6 or 7 I started to get a bit bored. The stories do tend to be formulaic and simple. However, I love the historical aspect of the books and the connection to the fairy tales is a neat concept. The Warrior Maiden was not boring in my opinion. I really enjoyed this one! Mulan was a strong warrior, a skilled archer, and super brave. While this story was also a tad formulaic, taking it out of the castle setting and creating a war setting made this book unique. This book was action-packed! There is some war violence but it isn’t gory or gratuitous. The dialogue can be a bit stilted at times and the manufactured angst feels a bit immature to me, even for YA, but even that doesn’t detract too much from what is ultimately a nice story.
I personally love the Christian aspect these books have. I don’t feel like any of it is “preachy”, but the stories do emphasize Christian characters that pray and put their faith in God. This book took an interesting angle regarding the Christian element – showing that people that consider themselves Christian may actually be inserting their own thoughts and ideas about Christianity rather than actually following God’s Word (i.e., killing people if they don’t convert, etc.).
I also love that these books take place in a historical setting – 14th Century Europe. I think it is very beneficial for young readers to learn about history, even if it is from a fiction book, if for no other reason than to see how different things were – and how similar!
I would recommend this series to any teenager. I’m well beyond my teenage years, but I enjoyed this series, also! They are sweet, simple love stories with a strong focus on doing what is right. I would recommend reading the series in order if you are interested. The stories don’t necessarily depend on each other – each plot is different – but the characters are all from the same family (the Hagenheims) so some references may not make sense without knowing previous stories.
The Warrior Maiden is one of my favorites in the Hagenheim series!
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Expected publication – February 5, 2019 by Thomas Nelson
My rating – 4 out of 5
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