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Reviewed by Donna Gielow McFarland for Readers' Favorite
Windwalker: Forbidden Flight (The Aeternum Chronicles Book 0) by H.G. Chambers is a well-written and easy-to-read YA fantasy with a strong and independent 16-year-old heroine, Kiva, who wants to be a windwalker – a member of a sect whose members fly on the backs of large raptors called kiraeen. There is only one problem: the sect is restricted to males only. At the risk of exile or even death, Kiva defies the traditions of her people to take on the challenge to become a windwalker. Her actions are not greeted with the response she hoped for, and she finds herself facing trial. While awaiting her fate and holding onto her dream, Kiva becomes aware that tales of ancient enemies may be true, and in fact, the ancient enemies may be rising again. But no one will listen, and it is up to Kiva to attempt to save the very people who have rejected her.
Windwalker is a story of bravery and heroism, but it concentrates more on Kiva’s training to become a windwalker than details of battle. I really liked this about the book. H.G. Chambers' descriptions of flying show so much talent that you would think he had ridden a kiraeen himself. The world-building is clear and uncluttered, even though the society is intricately complicated. Not everyone opposes what Kiva is trying to do, and so her actions incite social and political turmoil, all of which is painted in a very believable manner. Windwalker even includes a touch of romance, also forbidden by tradition. Windwalker kept me captivated from the first page until the end of the book, which is followed by multiple sequels. I really enjoyed this story. Recommended to all who love a good YA fantasy.