The Book of the Ice (#2)
Format: Hardcover, 384 pages
Release Date: April 13, 2021
Publisher: Ace Books
Genre: Fantasy / Dark Fantasy
The second novel in the thrilling and epic new fantasy series from the international bestselling author of Red Sister and Prince of Thorns.
On the planet Abeth there is only the ice. And the Black Rock.
For generations the priests of the Black Rock have reached out from their mountain to steer the fate of the ice tribes. With their Hidden God, their magic and their iron, the priests’ rule has never been questioned. But when ice triber Yaz challenged their authority, she was torn away from the only life she had ever known, and forced to find a new path for herself.
Yaz has lost her friends and found her enemies. She has a mountain to climb, and even if she can break the Hidden God’s power, her dream of a green world lies impossibly far to the south, across a vast emptiness of ice. Before the journey can even start, she has to find out what happened to the ones she loves and save those that can be saved.
Abeth holds its secrets close, but the stars shine brighter for Yaz and she means to unlock the truth.
The Girl and the Mountain is the second installment in author Mark Lawrence's Book of Ice series. For those who haven't read this series yet, or may want to in the future, let me lay down a bit of information for you. This series takes place in the same world, the planet of Abeth where ice is prevalent everywhere except at the equator where it is green, as the authors Book of the Ancestors. Yaz is the primary focus of this story along with several key secondary characters like Thurin, Quell, Zeen, Erris, Maya, and Quina.
Long ago, four old bloods clans allegedly from Earth, found themselves on Abeth. They were Gerant, which means you grow very big. Hunska, which makes you very fast. Marjal, which can give you some of a variety of lesser magics, like command over shadows, water, air, rock, fire and sometimes more than one of these. Quantal, which gives you major magics including the vast power of the Path and the ability to weave threads of existence to achieve more subtle manipulations of people and things.
The story picks up where The Girl and the Stars left off. 16-year-old Yaz is from the Ictha Ice Clan. She has the ability to manipulate what's called stars, the same ability as the Priests do which makes her a prize. Under the ice, Yaz survived against both the Broken, and the Tainted who are infected with devils/spirits. She also discovered a city left behind by the Missing who left Abeth before the four tribes of man arrived. After escaping the Ice, and Theus, can she survive what she finds at the Black Rock?
Thurin and Quell are key secondary characters. Thurin was born under the ice, has powers over water and fire, and is now freed from being possessed by Theus thanks to Yaz. Quell is from the same Ictha clan as Yaz and followed her under the Ice but for reasons I won't spoil. If it weren't for what happened in the first story, he could have likely asked Yaz to marry him. I will also say that there are quite a few villains in this story from Regulator Kazik, Eular, and Taproot an ancient simulation of a man called Elias Taproot.
There is a whole lot of traveling in this story. Yaz wants to see the rest of the world. She wants to travel to the land of the green and discover if there's a place for her. She travels with Thurin, Erris, and Quina, while later picking up a girl named Mali who joins the group after a stunning loss which I am still reeling from. She's also part of Convent of Sweet Mercy which readers of the Book of the Ancestors know very well. I would honestly be thrilled if we get a guest appearance by Nona Grey in the third installment. There is also a curious twist in this story when the characters find themselves in a place called Haydes. There is a slight Olympian twist at this point which leads Mali and Yaz's friends to the Green.
Fans of Mark’s previous books will enjoy this one. Except for the stupid cliffhanger, again! It's incredibly frustrating tease to end a book AGAIN and then have to wait a full year to find out what happens next. It's almost recommended to wait until all three books are released, and then pick them up together so that you can remember events from book to book.