She Would Be King 

she would be king

Wayetu Moore 

Review by: Maddy 

Available: September 2018 


Gbessa is cursed to never die. To her village she is a witch cast out in fear, but the wilderness loves her. The wind watches.

Norman Aragon’s father is a no good man, but his mother whispers to him of freedom when they get to Africa. His mother, who shares his gift for disappearing. But even invivisible the wind watches

June Day expected his life to always be that of a slave. But when his mother dies his anger rises. The spans of whips can’t break his skin nor could 50 men keep him in chains. The wind watches June closest of all.

All three are born with gifts and all three share one desire: freedom. From slavery, from persecution, from the life they didn’t ask for. All threes fates are tied together as the wind blows them to the budding country of Liberia and into each other.

She Would Be King is a unique twist in genres, merging historical fiction and fantasy into a magical retelling of the founding of the free country of Liberia. It almost reads like modern mythology. But not only is this book a historical fantasy, it’s a black historical fantasy. Written about a time of great persecution and struggles within the black community globally, the stakes were high for this book  to be an accurate portrayal of the issues faced in the Americas and Africa.

The heightened stakes were no match for the brilliant mind of Wayetu Moore. Not only did it depict the persecution and hardships faced but it also showed the rich cultures and vivacity that existed despite the suffering in the Americas and represented African tribes without the skewing of an ideology of savagery commonly seen in media; giving them the respect they deserve.

A strong story is nothing without strong characters and this trio is on par with the greats. You never loose interest as it shifts around because each perspective is enticing (you can also tell when the perspective changes which I appreciate).

She Would Be King is a standout in my vast library. It’s  refreshing and fun with powerful themes and bad ass characters. It’s the kind of book that will have you so enthralled that you are willing to read it in a car despite carsickness, and that will leave itself lingering in your mind for weeks to come. Reach out for something new and grab She Would Be King off the shelves, you won’t regret it.