The First Girl Child is something a little different from Amy Harmon. You can see what we mean here.
In a world full of fantasy there is an island called Saylok. It sits in the middle of the sea and and is ruled by a king who is a liar and a murderer. In this island monks have certain powers – one of which is the power to choose kings.
This particular story begins with the birth of a boy called Bayr. Bary is a mistake – and is born from an extra marital affair. As a result, he is always referred to as the bastard son. The father of Bayr is a powerful hungry king and Bayr has an uncle called Dagmar who is one of the monks in the island. Because Bayr’s mother cheats on the king and places a curse on the people of Saylok. The curse is that they can’t give birth to girls. This is done so that the people will be gradually wiped out. The king who built his throne on lies, deceit and betrayal sees Bayr and Alba as a threat. To save their land from the evil king, Bayr and Alba have to work hand in hand to break the curse and conquer the king.
The First Girl Child – Story Details
After the death of Bayr’s mother (who put the curse on the land), Bayr is to be the King and savior of Saylok because he was born to be an extraordinary young man with the power of ten men and the heart of a loving, gentle and beautiful soul. Once Bayr’s mother is gone he is raised by a monk in a temple with one of the keepers named Dagmar, who is his uncle.
After a while, the wife of the chief of the monks got pregnant. Prior to this, she had lost all children she tried to conceive. To everyone’s surprise she gives birth to a girl and the baby actually survives. Bayr is required to protect Alba as, even as a young boy because he is physically stronger than most men. In addition to this, Bayr’s loyalty makes the Chief of Berne believe that he’s the best option to protect his daughter. He is not just a protector to Alba but he is also her only friend. The two are always together and inseparable as they grow up. The relationship between these two eventually become a threat to the people of Saylok and this results in Bayr leaving.
The king who built his throne on lies, deceit and betrayal sees Bayr and Alba as a threat. To save their land from the evil king, Bayr and Alba has to work hand in hand to break the land curse and conquer the king.
Bayr is the bastard son of a powerful and jealous chieftain. His mother curses the land so that there would be no female children born in the land because of his father’s wrong doings. He is blessed by Thor with inhuman strength and swears to protect Alba for his entire life.
Opposite Bayr is Alba – the first girl child born after many years, and she’s being protected by Bayr.
Other characters include Ghost & Dagmar and they will win your heart and make you fall in love with this story.
Dagmar is Bayr’s uncle and is the only one who knows about the curse of the land. This really gives the story an interesting twist because this is just one of many secrets being kept from the other characters.
What the Critics Have to Say
One negative thing about this book is the fact that the story was not told in first-person or even third-person. Instead, it is told in third-person omniscient kind of viewpoint. It seemed to really create a weird disconnect at the beginning of the story. I felt it really made it difficult to experience the story through each character’s point of view and it took away from the ability to feel their plights firsthand.
All in all The First Girl Child is a character-driven tale full of fantasy. It has all subtle nuances that you want in a love story. You can get the pdf or epub version online here from Amazon.
The First Girl Child is a richly imaginative fantasy full of enticing characters. It has a broad cast and some strong main roles in it. Even with this, there was a sense of direction and individuality. Each of the story lines stayed on point throughout the entire book and lead to a brilliant outcome that felt satisfying and thrilling.
The fact that we don’t know a lot about the history behind the king and its power – other than that it’s basically blood magic – only adds to the mystery around the monks of Saylok.
With the monks being the keepers of the land, they play a big role protecting the main character Bayr while also helping to protecting Alba after Bayr leaves. The plot is well constructed and is built around the curse Bayr’s dying mother puts on the inhabitants of Saylok.
This story was brilliantly written which is typical for an Amy Harmon book. The story has many interesting and at times seemingly conflicting emotions. Some of these emotions are: love, redemption, sacrifice, power, betrayal, deceit, lies and grief. It makes for a really deep and interesting mix that keeps things moving.
Amy Harmon is an exceptional author with a really diverse writing gift. Where some authors have a genre and stick to it, she’s not afraid to bounce between different settings. She’s always been really strong at developing unique characters