Book Review: The Mapmaker’s War by Ronlyn Domingue

While it’s not heavily represented on this blog, us City Girls spend a lot of our free time reading. We read on the commute to work. We read on lunch hours. We read while we’re probably supposed to be paying attention to more important things. Reading is a big part of our daily lives.

Recently, we joined the Good Reads community for book recommendations and to build kind of a virtual bookshelf of everything we have consumed throughout the year. But one of the more exciting parts of the community is all the contests and book giveaways they hold for avid readers and reviewers.

Since we’ve been sent a number of advance copies of books, we thought we’d start reviewing the books that we’ve come across.


So… up first is the Advance Uncorrected Proofs-Not For Sale softcover of The Mapmaker’s War by Ronlyn Domingue courtesy of Simon & Shuster Canada and Goodreads.

In an ancient time, in a far away land, a young woman named Aoife is allowed a rare apprenticeship to become her kingdom’s mapmaker, tasked with charting the entire domain. Traveling beyond its borders, she finds a secretive people who live in peace, among great wealth and claim to protect a mythic treasure.

When Aoife reports their existence to her kingdom, the community is targeted as a threat. Attempting to warn them of imminent danger, Aoife is exiled for treason and finds refuge among the very people who had been declared her enemy. With them, she begins a new life surrounded by kindness, equality, and cooperation. But within herself, Aoife has no peace and cannot escape the haunting of her former life.

I’m not sure what I was expecting but am pleasantly surprised. A story told in the second person was hard to get used to but when I finally hit my stride, I didn’t want to stop.

A fantastical tale filled with beautiful imagery, strong influences of many different cultures (I love the Asian and Irish influences) was a great start for what is going to be a series.

It’s so rare these days to have a novel with a female protagonist that is able to be strong and stay true to herself regardless of how other people expect her to be.

A sequel isn’t needed but Ms. Domingue’s world does deserve a more in depth look.

Aoife’s courageous and strong character is something to be celebrated, especially in a time when so many written female characters seem to lack their own spirit and drive.

It’s a beautiful story of truth and fantasy, told in the second person, which adds a whole other magical element. 

It says there is a sequel in the works, though I’m not really sure it is necessary. I feel this is stronger on its own

City Girl Rating: 4 out of 5 glasses of wine

book cover image from google images

// EDIT: // We just received a lovely response from Ronlyn Domnigue regarding this review and her sequel in the works:

So that said, we can’t wait for this second adventure!