The Bird and the Blade (Compact Disc)

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Staff Reviews

The Bird and the Blade is a story of a girl with a fiery spirit who, when enslaved, fights back with all of her ability. It is a tale of romance and adventure, and it kept me on the edge of my seat for every minute I was reading it. Jinghua lost everything when she was enslaved, but when she meets the dashing Prince Khalaf, she realizes that she may yet have a chance to be free. As she grows familiar with the prince and his ways, she realizes that she does not want to lose him. This book had exquisitely realistic characters that showed intense emotion and desire. 


— Madi, Cresthill Middle School in Highlands Ranch, CO

December 1969 Indie Next List

“This book of riddles is itself a kind of sublime riddle composed of the ingredients of a true classic tale. There is doomed love, an authentic historical backdrop, fallen kingdoms and thwarted destinies, sacrifices that elevate, and an ending that, by transcending its finality, takes the reader full circle to begin the tale again with fresh eyes. Bannen takes the operatic tradition of Princess Turandot’s slave girl and infuses it with a richness of character and a convincing dramatic immediacy that rewards the reader at every turn. The Mongol Empire has never been so deftly invaded as it is in the pages of The Bird and the Blade.”
— Kenny Brechner, Devaney, Doak & Garrett Booksellers, Farmington, ME


A sweeping and tragic debut novel perfect for fans of The Wrath and the Dawn and Megan Whalen Turner.

The Bird and the Blade is a lush, powerful story of life and death, battles and riddles, lies and secrets from author Megan Bannen.

Enslaved in Kipchak Khanate, Jinghua has lost everything: her home, her family, her freedom . . . until the kingdom is conquered by enemy forces and she finds herself an unlikely conspirator in the escape of Prince Khalaf and his irascible father across the vast Mongol Empire.

On the run, with adversaries on all sides and an endless journey ahead, Jinghua hatches a scheme to use the Kipchaks' exile to return home, a plan that becomes increasingly fraught as her feelings for Khalaf evolve into an impossible love.

Jinghua's already dicey prospects take a downward turn when Khalaf seeks to restore his kingdom by forging a marriage alliance with Turandokht, the daughter of the Great Khan. As beautiful as she is cunning, Turandokht requires all potential suitors to solve three impossible riddles to win her hand--and if they fail, they die.

Jinghua has kept her own counsel well, but with Khalaf's kingdom--and his very life--on the line, she must reconcile the hard truth of her past with her love for a boy who has no idea what she's capable of . . . even if it means losing him to the girl who'd sooner take his life than his heart.

Product Details
ISBN: 9781538549506
ISBN-10: 1538549506
Publisher: Balzer & Bray/Harperteen
Publication Date: June 5th, 2018
Language: English