The Unbroken (Magic of the Lost, #1)

by C. L. Clark

4.5 of 5 stars 3 ratings • 2 reviews • 16 shelved 2021 Fantasy Pick
Book cover for The Unbroken

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The Unbroken (Magic of the Lost, #1)

by C. L. Clark

4.5 of 5 stars 3 ratings • 2 reviews • 16 shelved 2021 Fantasy Pick


Touraine is a soldier. Stolen as a child and raised to kill and die for the empire, her only loyalty is to her fellow conscripts. But now, her company has been sent back to her homeland to stop a rebellion, and the ties of blood may be stronger than she thought.

Luca needs a turncoat. Someone desperate enough to tiptoe the bayonet's edge between treason and orders. Someone who can sway the rebels toward peace, while Luca focuses on what really matters: getting her uncle off her throne.

Through assassinations and massacres, in bedrooms and war rooms, Touraine and Luca will haggle over the price of a nation. But some things aren't for sale.

In a political fantasy unlike any other, debut author C. L. Clark spins an epic tale of rebellion, espionage, and military might on the far outreaches of a crumbling desert empire.

'Clark's debut introduces a remarkable LGBTQ+ culture amid a story of colonial conquest, exploitation, prejudice, and brewing revolt in a land with a lost history of mystical powers . . . Fans of epic military fantasy will eagerly await more from Clark' Booklist

'High adventure on a human scale - don't miss it' Alix E. Harrow

'This strong debut is filled with exciting action and worldbulding, intriguing characters . . . and an explosion of feelings. Readers will be clamoring for more of Touraine and Luca before they finish' Library Journal: Starred Review

'The Unbroken is something special. I'm going to need book two asap' David Dalglish

'A compelling and persuasive reimagining of both heroism and heroics' Evan Winter

'A perfect military fantasy: brutal, complex, human and impossible to put down' Tasha Suri

'This book feels like one of those deep conversations you have with someone you respect at 3am on a Saturday night. It's wonderful, you know you're going to miss it before it's even over and you'll think about it for a long time to come' FIYAH Literary Magazine

'C. L. Clark's epic fantasy debut reveals all the ugly, painful, deeply personal complexities of revolution against empire. I'm in awe!' Shelley Parker-Chan

'A bold and exciting work that helps steer the evolution of the genre into the next decade' Marshall Ryan Maresca

'Get ready to fall in love with Touraine and Luca in one of the best fantasy debuts I have ever read!' Matt Wallace

'THE UNBROKEN is a utterly remarkable fantasy debut. A heart-rending, unflinching tale of love, loyalty, and making the right choices despite the repercussions. Clark had me completely engrossed in her prose, her world, and her characters from beginning to end' FanFiAddict

'A riveting epic fantasy about a city on the knife's edge of rebellion' K. A. Doore

  • ISBN10 0356516237
  • ISBN13 9780356516233
  • Publish Date 25 March 2021 (first published 23 March 2021)
  • Publish Status Active
  • Publish Country GB
  • Imprint Orbit
  • Format Paperback (B-Format (198x129 mm))
  • Pages 528
  • Language English


Avatar for quirkycat

Quirky Cat 4 of 5 stars

C.L. Clark is back with another brilliant fantasy! The Unbroken is a novel that I've heard so much about it lately. Fortunately, it's also the first in a series (Magic of the Lost), so this is not the last we'll be seeing of these characters.

Touraine was not born to be a soldier – but she was raised to be one. She was taken as a child and forced to work her way through the ranks. Now, she's been sent back to the very land she was stolen from – and she's going to have to make a choice.

Then there's Luca. She's in need of a spy willing to cross the line, take risks, and in general, ignore concepts such as treason. What she needs is a rebel. And it's looking like Touraine may fit that bill.

“Stupid, stupid. Instinct alone saved her life. She lifted her arms just in time to get a slice across her left forearm instead of her throat.”

Guys, there is so much to love about The Unbroken. It is a fierce and compelling tale – one that will tug at your heartstrings one moment and throw you into the center of the action the next. Needless to say, I loved it.

This is probably not the best book to read if you're looking for something bright and happy. The Unbroken is incredibly bleak at times – but that just makes other moments shine all the brighter. It's a fine balance and one that C.L. Clark found.

I think that it wasn't until I was a third of the way in that I found myself getting truly emotionally invested in the story. Don't get me wrong – the horrible things happening in this book were still hitting hard (perhaps too hard). But it wasn't until I started rooting for the characters that it felt more intense and real.

I love how much was fit into The Unbroken. It's fantasy and a little bit science fiction. It's got action, world-building, character development, and did I mention that it's GLBT? I love it so much, and I sincerely cannot wait to hear news of the sequel.

Thanks to Orbit and #NetGalley for making this book available for review. All opinions expressed are my own.

Check out more reviews over at Quirky Cat's Fat Stacks