Tuesday, November 18, 2014

HFVBT: Stephanie Thornton's The Tiger Queens: The Women of Genghis Khan - Review and {Giveaway}


My thoughts
Stephanie Thornton has earned herself a permanent place in my roster of favorite historical fiction authors. I mean, is there anything this woman can't write!? As she did with her first two novels, The Secret History and Daughter of the Gods, once again she has created another strong and heroic female character. And not only do we have the strong central character of Borte, but we have the other "women of Genghis Khan" who were also strong and heroic in their own right.

In The Tiger Queens, we get to hear the story of the women behind the legend of Genghis Khan. As any person who is obsessed with history, I have long been interested in Genghis Khan and his exploits. Now with this book, we get a glimpse of the inner workings of his life and who was really influential to him. Although this book is not non-fiction, it is so finely researched that I felt I was learning history along the way. And I always say that one of historical fiction's jobs is to spark enough interest in the reader to spur them into seeking more information on the subject, whether that be learning about it online or reading books about it. This book has definitely done that and then some!

And returning back to the character of Borte. Despite being read a prophecy by her mother that she would be responsible for great destruction in the future, Borte seeks to overcome this foretelling and bands together with the other tiger queens to ensure the happiness of their family, and the greatness of their people. Who doesn't love a character who overcomes adversity for the greater good? I know I do!

With The Tiger Queens, Thornton has firmly secured her place as one of the historical fiction greats. The glorious thing is knowing that she is hard at work on her next novel. I cannot wait for it! Please, if you have not read her books, take it from me. If you love historical fiction, or even just a great, well-told story, this is the author for you.

About the book
Publication Date: November 4, 2014
NAL Trade
Formats: eBook, Paperback
Genre: Historical Fiction

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In the late twelfth century on the sweeping Mongolian grasslands, following a violent feud between blood brothers, the victor Temujin ascends to power, declaring himself Genghis Khan. But behind one powerful man stand many strong women…

After her mother foretells an ominous future for her, darkness looms over Borte’s life. She becomes an outcast among her clan and after seeking comfort in the arms of an aristocratic traveler, she discovers he is the blood brother of Temujin, the man she was betrothed to years ago but who abandoned her long before they could marry. And he will only leave her behind again.

Temujin will make Borte his khatun, his queen, yet it will take many women to safeguard his fragile new empire. Their daughter, a fierce girl named Alaqai, will ride and shoot an arrow as well as any man. Fatima, an elegant Persian captive, seeks revenge against the Mongol barbarians who destroyed her city and murdered her family, but in the end will sacrifice everything to protect the Golden Family. Demure widow to Genghis’ son, Sorkhokhtani positions her sons to inherit the Empire when it begins to fracture from within.

As Genghis Khan sets out to expand his conquests and the steppes run red with blood, Borte and the women of the clan will fight, love, scheme, and sacrifice, all for the good of their family and the greatness of the People of the Felt Walls…

Praise for The Tiger Queens
“A gripping epic of sacrifice, revenge, and conquest…kept me riveted from beginning to end!” –Michelle Moran, bestselling author of The Second Empress

“From under the felted ger tents of Genghis Kahn emerge four powerful women. It is a testament to Thornton’s writing prowess that she can so intricately whittle heroines that are both compassionate and ruthless from the bones of our ancestors…a stunning achievement!” — Barbara Wood, New York Times bestselling author of The Serpent and the Staff and Rainbows on the Moon

“A vivid depiction of warrior women tough as the harsh, windswept steppes which nurtured them and who, as the warring Mongol clans battle for supremacy, survive… to ensure their men emerge the victors. Gripping stuff!” –Alex Rutherford, author of the Empire of the Moghul series

“A sprawling historical saga centering on the wives and daughters of Genghis Khan. These bold, courageous women make tremendous sacrifices in the face of danger, revenge and high-stakes survival, all in the name of family love and loyalty. Be prepared to be swept away by Thornton’s richly drawn epic of an empire and its generational shifts of power.” –Renee Rosen, author of Dollface and What the Lady Wants

“They were the Golden Family of Genghis Khan. Yet their lives were anything but golden as they struggled to hold together the very center of the largest empire the world has ever known. An empire that was built in one lifetime, and would have been destroyed in the next had it not been for the wives and daughters of the Great Khan. This is historical fiction at its finest.” — Gary Corby, author of The Marathon Conspiracy
“Three generations of strong women live, love, suffer, and triumph in a fresh and gritty setting—Genghis Khan’s forging of an empire in thirteenth century Mongolia. Marginalized in most histories, these Mongol mothers and daughters, empresses and slaves, claim their voices again in Stephanie Thornton’s The Tiger Queens. Unusual and imaginative!” –Elizabeth Loupas, author of The Second Duchess and The Red Lily Crown

“Stunning. The Tiger Queens sweeps the reader into the ruthless world of Genghis Khan’s wives and daughters with a gritty realism as intense as the eternal blue sky and blood-soaked steppes. Vivid characterization and top-notch writing. This story of strong women, their enduring friendships and passions give a rare glimpse into a shadowy period of history. A worthy successor to Taylor Caldwell’s The Earth is the Lord’s.” –Judith E. French, author of The Conqueror, The Barbarian, and The Warrior



About the Author
Stephanie Thornton is a writer and history teacher who has been obsessed with infamous women from ancient history since she was twelve. She lives with her husband and daughter in Alaska, where she is at work on her next novel.

“The Secret History: A Novel of Empress Theodora” and “Daughter of the Gods: A Novel of Ancient Egypt” are available from NAL/Penguin. “The Tiger Queens: The Women of Genghis Khan” will hit the shelves November 4, 2014, followed by “The Conqueror’s Wife: A Novel of Alexander the Great” in November 2015.

For more information please visit Stephanie Thornton’s website and blog. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.


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Twitter Tags: @hfvbt @StephMThornton @PenguinUSA

Follow the instructions on the Rafflecopter form below to enter for a chance to win a paperback copy of The Tiger Queens by Stephanie Thornton! (Open to U.S./Canada)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

A copy of this book was sent to me in exchange for an honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for providing it. 

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15 comments:

I apologize for word verification, but I turned it off and had close to 50 spam comments within 12 hours (nobody has time for that) so I had to turn it back on. Sorry!

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  1. I have been anticipating this novel's release for some time now. I am looking forward to exploring a wholly different time, place, culture, and range of possible experiences than I usually do given so much of my historical fiction reading is set in the US or Western Europe. Thanks for this feature and the chance to win. Cheers, Kara S

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  2. Oops, got ahead of myself on that comment and neglected your question. I'd say women close to this leader may have had exceptional power or very little at all -- patriarchy ruled the day obviously, but personal relationships can give way to flexible, equitable arrangements of leadership roles about which it is pleasant to speculate.

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  3. Susan @ Reading WorldNovember 18, 2014 at 9:01 PM

    Oh, I've already forgotten how the question was worded. Do I think the women influenced him? I think strong male leaders who are secure in their positions are always influenced, in one way or another, by the women in their lives. As to how--I'll need to read the book! Thanks for this giveaway!

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  4. This story looks really interesting! It is so rare that we get to read about the women behind the powerful men. I will definitely be adding this to my TBR list.

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  5. I don't know much about Genghis Khan, but it will be interesting to see how much influence they had over his decisions. Thanks for the giveaway! I am adding this book to my TBR list.

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  6. I believe that women did not have that much power nor influence. Thanks for this feature and giveaway.

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  7. I'd imagine they were very important, from his upbringing to his marriage.

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  8. Oh, I'm certain they were very influential, as were so many women in world history, but because history books were written by men in the past, the women's roles were trivialized. Thanks for the opportunity. My son is interested in this area's history and has gotten me interested also.

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  9. I think the women in his life had great influence over him even if would never admit that they did. It is usually the woman behind the man that changes the world.

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  10. I honestly don't know if they had any influence on him, you would think that they would.
    Thanks for the giveaway!

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  11. I love this author's writing! I can't wait to read this book and all upcoming books!

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  12. I'm not sure how much influence his wives would have had, after all it was such a male-centric society and women were valued less for their minds than their home- and baby-making abilities.

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  13. I'm going to have to pick this one up then. I got it as a surprise review request and just wasnt' sure but now I've seen two reviews on it that really make me want to give it a go :)

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  14. Women have always been influential!

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  15. I think that they were probably very influential. Thanks for having the giveaway.

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