Children's Fiction · Novels · Reviews

Review: The Woman Who Rides Like A Man

Hi friends, happy Friday. I hope you’re all doing well. Today I’m going to be posting my review of Tamora Pierce’s novel The Woman Who Rides Like a Man.

You can read my review of book one: Alanna: The First Adventure
You can read my review of book two: In the Hand of the Goddess

The Woman Who Rides Like a Man (Song of the Lioness, #3)
The Woman Who Rides Like a Man

The Woman Who Rides Like a Man by: Tamora Pierce: Alanna is on a quest for her next adventure; she now finds herself in the desert of Tortall where she is captured and forced to prove herself. Now she must duel to the death in order to prove she has what it takes and become allowed into the tribe. This was another great instalment to this series. The plots were interesting but it was more the character development that really took this novel to the next level. The reader really liked how far Alanna has come since the first novel; she’s really growing into herself and seeing the world differently. Before she didn’t like being “like other girls” which is a trope this reader can’t stand, and we saw that in the first novel, but now she’s learning to embrace being a girl and loving herself, as well as other girls. The reader also really enjoyed how she fought for herself when proposed to and didn’t just go with what was expected of her. That was some strong character development. The whole love triangle, which again has been building since book one, really came to a point in this novel felt kinda played out. The reader is tired of her bouncing between John and George. We are happy to see Alanna choosing a path that she actually wants. The new characters in this book also really played to Alanna’s character as they let her grow more as she learned about them and actually became friends with them. They were interesting characters, they weren’t as fleshed out as they could have been; it was hard to tell them apart, but they brought new and fascinating stories to the table. They kept the plots engaging and compelling. It was also good that Thom was in this, if only for the briefest of moments. The reader wishes we could have gotten more of him too because Pierce teases us with what he’s been up to and it sounds so captivating and cool, but alas we get a small chapter with him. As for the plots, it was a little confused as to why Alanna was in a foreign land from her own and forced to prove that she could fight like a man; she kinda just swoops into this place and declares they change their ways without fully knowing their culture. It felt a little white saviour-y. The reader also couldn’t stand the fact that every chapter, pretty much, had the title name in it. So many of the characters kept calling Alanna “The Woman Who Rides Like a Man” we get it. It was fine the first few times, but after the fourth time it became extremely redundant and annoying. Aside from that though, this was still a fun and exciting read with lots of magic and adventure.

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