“She recalls the endless summers—recalls standing waist deep in the waves and waiting for a ship that never came. She has spent her entire life dreaming of escape.”
Emerala the Rouge has spent her life dreaming of the sea and escaping her life in Chancey. For in Chancey, her Cairan people are persecuted by the king and his Gold Cloaks. As the years have gone by, things have only grown worse for the Cairans. A city balancing on the edge of a sword, a girl with the power to set an ancient prophecy in motion, and newly arrived pirates set the stage for the beginning of an epic adventure.
“He is a man of the law, and justice is his duty. He thinks of the body that hung limp in the square. He thinks of his father wringing his cap in his hands, turning away. He thinks of the bear king—of the man who would-be-god—kneeling on the floor and praying for luck. Pulling up his dead wife’s flowers by the roots.
What is justice?”
Told from multiple perspectives, The Changing Tide offers a wide cast of characters, all of whom have faced struggles that have made them the people they are today. All with their own motives, these characters become entangled in a story that is larger than each of them individually and are forced to reevaluate everything they were taught to believe and determine for themselves who they want to be.
In particular, I loved the characters of Emerala the Rouge and Captain James Byron. Emerala is brave, stubborn, passionate, and has a strong obligation to do what is right, even if it gets her into trouble—and this girl has a penchant for attracting trouble. James has such great character development. Watching his internal struggle between what he was taught to believe in and what he knows deep down is morally right was incredibly powerful and I cannot wait to see the rest of his character arc in the later installments of this series.
“You cannot change the hearts of men.”
Beautifully told, this story is fast paced and I found myself flipping through each page to learn what would happen next. Throughout the novel Dowling uses vivid descriptions to create a rich world I felt as though I were a part of while reading.
“Gold blood bleeds red.”
The Changing Tide is the beginning of a grand adventure that tackles issues of identity, prejudice, and hate that is passed down through the centuries. I cannot wait to read the next book in this series, The Forbidden City!