Song of the Current

Song of the Current

by Sarah Tolcser


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Caroline Oresteia is destined for the river. Her father is a wherryman, as was her grandmother. All Caro needs is for the river god to whisper her name, and her fate is sealed. But at seventeen, Caro may be too late.

So when pirates burn ships and her father is arrested, Caro volunteers to transport mysterious cargo in exchange for his release. Secretly, Caro hopes that by piloting her own wherry, the river god will finally speak her name.

But when the cargo becomes more than Caro expected, she finds herself caught in a web of politics and lies. With much more than her father's life at stake, Caro must choose between the future she knows, and the one she could have never imagined.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781681192970
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
Publication date: 06/06/2017
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 1,234,112
Product dimensions: 5.70(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.40(d)
Lexile: HL610L (what's this?)
Age Range: 13 - 17 Years

About the Author

Sarah Tolcser lives in New Orleans, where she is an elementary technology teacher. A graduate of St. Lawrence University, she double majored in writing and philosophy. She enjoys video games and NBA basketball. She is married, with two cats.


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Song of the Current 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
TheThoughtSpot More than 1 year ago
Mythological fantasy! Thanks to NetGalley and Bloomsbury USA for the opportunity to read and review Song of the Current by Sarah Tolcser! Caroline and her father are smugglers that come across a tragic sight as they pull into a harbor; boats are ablaze and have been destroyed. The port was attacked by a ship passing through and no one understands the purpose of the attack. Papa is arrested for smuggling and Caroline makes a deal with the commander to deliver cargo, contents unknown, to Valonikos in exchange for Papa’s freedom. The cargo box is opened and Caroline finds a young man, Tarquin, inside. He’s supposed to be delivering a message about the assassination of the Emparch, a ruler. Caroline suspects that he’s not telling the complete truth. Eventually, Tarquin explains to Caroline who he really is. Once she hears his truth and they realize what’s at stake, their plans completely change. They now plan on going to a completely different place to save his sister. The danger increases and so does the death toll. The first part of the book shows the characters, their lives and builds the world of The Song of the Current. The second part brings action, intrigue and danger and I became concerned with the characters’ well being. The humor grows in the end also. The story ends with excitement for the future and anticipation for the sequel, Whisper of the Tide. 4 stars for this fantasy built with an author-created mythology! * I received a complimentary copy of this book for voluntary review consideration.
Julia Mihalek More than 1 year ago
Loved this book! Such a wondrous adventure! This is the first book I've read that gives me the POV of the sailor which was a really fun and interesting aspect. The characters were lively and made me not want to leave this book. It left me smiling and hoping for the next one to come out faster! I'm looking forward to future voyages with Caro and any mysteries that lie ahead.
Pens-and-Parchment More than 1 year ago
To put it simply, I LOVED THIS BOOK. Of course, it wouldn’t be much of a review if I just left it at that. So, let me attempt to put all my squealing emotions and uncontrollable feels into words. Song of the Current follows Caro Oresteia on her journey through the Riverlands, as she attempts to deliver a very peculiar package in exchange for the freedom of her father, who’s recently been accused of smuggling. Sounds straightforward enough, but the plot quickly thickens once Caro discovers what the package actually is. Spoiler Alert (not really though, this is in the synopsis) – it’s a rather snobby courier named Tarquin. In terms of the plot, I couldn’t put this book down. Literally, I carried my Nook everywhere I went and continued to read as much as humanly possible. The plot twists people, THE PLOT TWISTS. That being said, this book did take a while to get going, which is why I gave it 4.5 stars instead of a full 5. The fantasy world of the Riverlands has a lot of lingo and unusual characteristics, so I wasn’t immediately engaged by the story. It took me about 75 pages in until I got to the point where I was continuously flipping pages. If you’re someone that’s easily daunted by an abundance of names and terminology being thrown about, I encourage you to power through, because things really do clear up as you read. Once I was immersed into Caro’s world, I never wanted to leave. The Riverlands really are as magical and treacherous and utterly breathtaking as Caro describes it, I mean after all, I’m writing about it as if I’ve actually been there! The world is steeped in folklore and tales of the gods, which I couldn’t get enough of. The river landscape itself felt tangible and realistic, like I could feel the sway of Cormorant as it sailed through the reedy marsh. I also loved how a big focus of the book was on sailing and its actual mechanics, which is typically glossed over in YA fantasy. In addition to swashbuckling adventure and heart-pounding political intrigue, this book has … *drum roll*… LADY PIRATES!! And some seriously bad-ass ones at that. Caro herself is a biracial privateer who takes charge of her very own ship, and it was so heartening to see a MC that was not only fierce and capable, but intelligent, caring, and occasionally doubtful. Caro also has an atypical family arrangement – she and her father live together on their wherry and travel the Riverlands, while her mother remains on land and works in the family business – which was a refreshing twist compared to most YA fantasies, where the MC usually has a) dead parents, b) one dead parent, or c) no recollection of their past whatsoever. There was also another grown-up female wherryman that Caro looked up to throughout the book, and I positively adored their relationship! And last but certainly not least, the romance. Tarquin is entitled and spoiled-rotten, but has a true heart of gold and a quirky personality that sets him apart from the dashing, heart-throb love interest we’re so accustomed to seeing in YA lit. The romance between him and Caro also has a really interesting storyline that’s completely unpredictable. The build-up is slow and sweet, and culminates in one of the most satisfying love scenes I’ve ever read. The ending was perfect, all the loose plot threads were tied together, but I’m still DYING for the sequel!
Aditi-ATWAMB More than 1 year ago
Before I begin, can we PLEASE have some SERIOUS COVER APPRECIATION FOR THIS BOOK? I know we aren’t supposed to judge books by their covers, but honestly, if a book has a good cover, it makes me was to OWN AND READ it THAT MUCH MORE! Saying this book looks beautiful is an understatement because the Cover Gods in the Shiny Book Tower have TRULY outdone themselves this time. Combine a beautiful book with a FEMALE PIRATE AND MAGIC and this was a book ALL OF MY BOOKDRAGON TINGLY SENSES WERE TELLING ME I HAD TO READ IT. Let’s break this book down: IDEA: Female Pirates, Destiny, Magic, Gods and Empires in the balance? It was a no-brainer that I needed to read Song of the Current because EVERYTHING about it sounded so good. Moreover, I heard BRILLIANT things about this book before I began and it had me even more excited. PLOT: I’ll be honest, it took a while to get used to the world this was set in. As Anisha and I spoke about while we read the book: a) The world-building could have been better. We were thrown names of countries and cities, titles and sailing terms with little to no explanation which resulted in a LOT of flipping to the front where the map what and trying to figure out WHAT WAS GOING ON. b) A glossary for this book would HONESTLY have been much appreciated. It would have really helped in understanding everything. Since the world building was a little rough, it took me a while to get used to the story. I hoped that Tarquin wouldn’t be the love interest and I hoped that the Black Dogs would be some serious opponents but I was slightly let down on both counts. At the same time, there were also a lot of things I LOVED, including how Caro was the PERFECT BADA*S HEROINE. As she says, she isn’t someone waiting to be rescued like a princess in a tower and moved towards something better. (YES! A FIRST! GO SARAH TOLSCER!) She made decisions on her own and her parents respected them instead of trying to mould her to fit their expectations. (ONCE AGAIN, THANK YOU SARAH.) I also LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVED that ending. If I was unsure about the book for the first two thirds, the BRILLIANT ending made up for it. (No spoilers) WRITING: I’m mostly going to tie this to the world building that could’ve been better and hence by default, the writing could have been too. I loved how the concepts of the Gods and Destiny and Fate were written about, but I just wish the world building had been better. CONCLUSION: Be true to yourself, could you TRULY pass up a book with FEMALE PIRATES, MAGIC AND A SPECTACULAR COVER? Song of the Current is definitely worth your time, and your heart! 4 stars.
Rebecca_J_Allen More than 1 year ago
I loved this watery world! The reader slips easily onto the small boat with Caro, feeling the wind in the sails and the current of the water carry them through the story. Caro's careful listening for the voice of the river god, a voice her father says she will hear in the language of small things, the quiet whispers of animals and plants along the river, and the motion of the water itself, makes the world feel real. The story moves quickly and the plot has plenty of twists. Romance and pirates, sword fights and quick escapes. Even a sea monster. It took me some time to get pulled into the characters, but sticking with them pays off. I’d recommend this for action-adventure and fantasy lovers. Thanks to Netgalley for the free advance reader copy!
drakenfyre More than 1 year ago
What do you do when your destiny is bigger than you were told? Caro has always been told that the river god will call for her when she is ready. She has been straining to hear the call for as long as she can remember. Caro decides to take her destiny into her own hands and takes on her father’s job to transport cargo in exchange for her father’s freedom. Caro was given strict rules to dealing with the cargo she was in charge of, and like any normal human with a sense of curiosity she opens the crate and Hello story. Caro is such a great character, she is strong and independent, she seems to have a good head on her shoulders and she doesn’t take crap from anyone. She is determined to get this cargo delivered to its destination, despite pirates trying to hunt her down for what is on her ship. She is quick thinking and sharp witted when it comes to dodging them. There is magic in this book, but it’s not overly saturated, it is it used just in a way that helps tell the story but not so much that it takes away from Caro. Family is of key importance in this book; Caro is willing to take on this dangerous shipment to save her father. Her mother is not so much a part of this book until later on. She is very focused on her job, but is still there to help Caro when she needs it. My only issue was with all the ship terms that were used in the book, I think it would have been a bit helpful if there was a glossary in the back to help those of us don’t have our sea legs. I cannot wait to see what adventures Caro has ahead of her in the next book.
NovelKnight More than 1 year ago
Current carry you, my friend, because this book certainly will! I was so excited about Song of the Current and usually all that excitement tends to mean I absolutely love a book or it doesn’t meet my expectations. This happened to be the former (yay!) and I am SO ready for the next book in the series. Tolcser creates such an interesting world with the god at the bottom of the river, the frogmen, the wherries traveling the rivers beholden to no emparch or lord. It’s the story of the common people with a destiny that cannot be escaped and that immediately stood out for me. There’s such a vibrancy to the writing, the way the characters talk, the different cultures of the people Caro meets along the trip. It’s rich, unique, and I devoured it. Caro is the perfect example of what I look for in a heroine. She’s strong and brave, but makes mistakes, gets flustered, knows a lot about some things but still has a lot to learn—she is a character who grows. In this book alone she’s not the same girl she started out as and I loved watching that transformation. She’s caring and devoted and if I had to pick a character to be in my corner, I’d want her. Not that Tarquin is anything to sneer at, quite the swordsman that one. Tolscer actually showed a great character arc for him too which I was really impressed by. He and Caro have to work together and it changes both of them ultimately for the better. Plus, their dynamic made for some pretty entertaining scenes (a bucket of water comes to mind…). I even liked their romance even though I saw it coming. While I don’t think it was necessary exactly, I totally want more. I love romance in my stories and this one was perfect, somewhat of an enemies-to-lovers deal but not rushed and also not childish. The characters are treated as both teens and adults in the decisions they make which I appreciated as a reader. The other characters that came and went throughout the book never suffered either. I felt like each received enough detail to give them life depending on how large of a role they played. There are definitely some side stories I can see coming out in the future, like Kenté’s (oh PLEASE give us her story!). Song of the Current is full of action and adventure that sang to my inner pirate lover (even if the main character isn't a pirate). Perfect for fans of the sea-driven Daughter of the Pirate King and the beautifully written The Hundredth Queen. I don’t think I can recommend this book enough, and if you haven’t already, definitely get this one on your TBR and pre-ordered. It’s time to sail down the river in your own wherry!
taramichelle More than 1 year ago
I read this book in one sitting because I could not put it down. If you like action, magic, and pirates, this is definitely a book you should read. The world-building was unique, although the focus on sailing may be too much for some readers. It does start off a bit slow but once it picks up, I really enjoyed the pacing. There were daring escapades, adorable romantic scenes, and political drama. Except for the villains, the characters were all multi-dimensional (it makes sense in context why the villains aren't fleshed out too much). Both Caro and Tarquin stole my heart (as did Fee). And Caro's parents (whose relationship I loved). And her cousin. So really I liked all of the main characters. I also adored the romance and cannot wait to see what happens next. The various cultures in this book were so intriguing. I particularly liked learning about the wherry folk and the river god. The author did a good job of weaving the mythology of the world into the story. There was a lot of sailing terminology but it didn't distract me too much. I can see how it might be off-putting for some readers though because there is a lot of detail. The politics were intriguing but I would have liked a little bit more detail. The ending of this book wrapped everything up very well. I will absolutely be continuing with this series, I can't wait to see what's next! This is Sarah Tolcser's debut novel and I'm expecting great things from her in the future. *Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest and truthful review.
book_junkee More than 1 year ago
3 stars might be too high... I had seen a lot of buzz around this book and I was pretty excited to finally get to it. Sadly, I was a bit disappointed. I liked Caro well enough. She's strong and sassy and can take care of herself. There is an interesting group of characters here and I don't want to say anything and ruin the perception of them. I will say that the banter between Caro and one person in particular was amusing and most of the reason I kept reading. Plotwise, it felt like a lot of things mashed together and for me, they didn't really fit. I found myself bored most of the time and yet I kept reading. By the high reviews that are already here, I'm in the minority. Overall, there was something that kept me going, but I couldn't tell you what it was, as it was lacking a bit of a spark that I was expecting. I don't know if I will read the next one. **Huge thanks to Bloomsbury for providing the arc free of charge**