From School Library Journal
Grade 8–10—In this first book in a planned trilogy, 15-year-old Nya and her younger sister, Tali, who were orphaned during the recent war that nearly destroyed their city, both have the gift of healing. Unlike Tali, though, Nya can't harmlessly shift the pain she takes from the sick and wounded into enchanted pynvium metal. Instead, she must shift it from person to person, a dangerous talent that she keeps hidden from the ruling Baseeri and from the Healer's League where Tali is an apprentice. Scrounging to make ends meet, Nya resorts to odd jobs and the occasional theft to stay alive. When a young soldier discovers her secret and implores her to save his dying father, Nya is forced to choose between protecting herself and acknowledging her ability to save others and perhaps her entire city. First-time author Hardy has written an inventive coming-of-age tale about a likable young woman whom readers will cheer throughout her exploits. Her appealing narration chronicles her expanding worldview as she progresses from a self-interested survivalist to a reluctant heroine to a determined rebel. Fantasy fans and those who just love a good story will enjoy this fast-paced novel and eagerly await book two.—Leah J. Sparks, formerly at Bowie Public Library, MD
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
In the tradition of strong-willed adventure heroines, Nya rallies, unleashing her powers as she faces complex moral dilemmas. Her first-person narration is suffused with the agony of deciding who will live or die. Timely ethical exploration in the guise of high-action fantasy. (Kirkus Reviews)
Nya’s distinctive first-person voice, strongly personable with a wry sense of humor, draws readers in…[the] hard-charging plot makes the pages fly by...Would you save someone’s life at the cost of unbearable pain to someone else?[Readers] will eagerly await the next volume of the Healing Wars. (The Horn Book)
The headstrong Nya and the innovative premise...keep readers turning the pages. (Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books)
Fantasy fans and those who just love a good story will enjoy this fast-paced novel and eagerly await book two. (School Library Journal)