Review: Wonder Woman: Warbringer - Leigh Bardugo

Wonder Woman: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo
Series: DC Icons #1
My rating: {★★★★★}

YA Fantasy
Published August 29th 2017 by Random House Books for Young Readers

Source: Purchased
Daughter of immortals.

Princess Diana longs to prove herself to her legendary warrior sisters. But when the opportunity finally comes, she throws away her chance at glory and breaks Amazon law—risking exile—to save a mortal. Diana will soon learn that she has rescued no ordinary girl, and that with this single brave act, she may have doomed the world.

Daughter of death.

Alia Keralis just wanted to escape her overprotective brother with a semester at sea. She doesn’t know she is being hunted by people who think her very existence could spark a world war. When a bomb detonates aboard her ship, Alia is rescued by a mysterious girl of extraordinary strength and forced to confront a horrible truth: Alia is a Warbringer—a direct descendant of the infamous Helen of Troy, fated to bring about an age of bloodshed and misery.


Two girls will face an army of enemies—mortal and divine—determined to either destroy or possess the Warbringer. Tested beyond the bounds of their abilities, Diana and Alia must find a way to unleash hidden strengths and forge an unlikely alliance. Because if they have any hope of saving both their worlds, they will have to stand side by side against the tide of war.

I buddy read Wonder Woman: Warbringer with my fabulous #squad member UMA! from Books.Bags.Burgers. We had an awesome time reading this one and a whole lot of similar, fan-girlish thoughts and chats. Please go and check out her review HERE

In case it wasn't apparent yet, I loved WWW. Leigh Bardugo is just AMAZING. I can't say enough good things.

This is the story of Diana, before she was Wonder Woman; before she was a completely confident and kick-ass warrior; this is her coming of age and her first adventure into the world of men.

You do not enter a race to lose.

It's got all the best things:

Epic World Building
What I love about this is that the story might be familiar to some readers, but still the world is carefully built from the Island of Themyscira up. Even when the action makes it's way into 'the real world' Bardugo still describes everything in such beautiful detail that you could imagine yourself there. Whether it's a slightly dodgy hotel or an ancient memorial in Greece I was right there alongside my beloved characters.

Multi-faceted, Relateable Characters
Not only is this book about Diana, it's as much about Alia and all the secondary characters. Even the background characters came to life for me which made those no-punches-pulled, hard-hitting action scenes even all the more nail biting... And the losses all the more horrific.

A Great Plot
Bardugo is the Queen of plotting. Ever since I read Six of Crows where twists and turns seemed to manifest out of thin air I have thought this! And while WWW isn't that sort of book, it's still tightly plotted with a few things that might surprise you: I know they surprised me!

Wit and Sass and Humour
I adored the humour in this book. I had plenty of laugh out loud moments as well as little snarky snorts. For me, the characters had the perfect amount of sass, the perfect amount of biting humour and the perfect amount of naïveté for a bunch of teenagers and a budding super-hero on their way to save the world.

“On a scale of one to ‘we’re definitely going to die,’ where would you put this?”

Diversity, Ferocious Female Friendships and a touch of Romance
Diversity... Wow. Was this diverse or what? And not in-your-face kind of diverse, but the diversity was carefully included into the storyline which made the charters feel all the more credible.
Diana is an Amazonian warrior - not yet even eighteen and already six foot tall and strong enough to hoist a vehicle over her shoulder.
Alia is a 'brown girl' with an African American mother and Greek father and she's happily super interested in science and a bit of a geek.
Nim is a bi 'brown girl' of Indian descent who is incredibly creative and her antics made me laugh out loud.
Theo is a fairly scrawny Mediterranean guy who has more brains than brawn.

The female friendships included here were just the type that I love to read about - true friendships where women are prepared to support and stand up for each other. Nim and Alia had been friends forever and stuck to it through thick and thin. This also didn't stop them from developing a solid and fantastic friendship with Diana, nor did it stop them from being friends with the guys and having healthy and meaningful relationships outside of their female friendships. From the characters to their interactions to their friendships and to the very shippable romances, everything was so well rounded it was sheer pleasure to read.

“Sister in battle, I am shield and blade to you. As I breathe, your enemies will know no sanctuary. While I live, your cause is mine.”

For those of you worrying that this will be a standard super hero book, don't! It's as much a fantasy lover's world and perhaps even more so: Strict super hero enthusiasts might be disappointed that this book wasn't more about Wonder Woman and the Amazons however for this reader, the blend of the coming of age of a future super hero, the lessons learnt along the way and the amazing story that this is equalled the perfect amalgamation for a five star read.

[T]o the Amazons of the world, to every woman or girl who fights for peace and on behalf of one another, thank you for inspiring me.

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Redefining Girly: How Parents Can Fight the Stereotyping and Sexualizing of Girlhood, from Birth to Tween
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