I'm one of those readers who always skips over the maps embedded in books. But to skip the maps in this book would be a big mistake. The maps aren't just illustrations: they are part of the story.
Nix was born in Honolulu around 1868 but she has spent her life on board her father's sailing ship Temptation, sailing across the world, across time, and across mythology itself. She has seen magic and collected mythical artifacts like the caladrius bird that can cure any illness, sky herring from the clouds above legendary Skandia, and a bottomless bag that will carry anything, of any size.
As long as the captain has a map for it, he can sail the ship to any place or time, real or imagined.
However, the combination of the captain's opium addiction and his obsession with Nix's dead mother are bound to take the Temptation into trouble. If he succeeds with his goal of revisiting Hawaii before Lin's death, he might even erase Nix's entire life.
With a strong female narrator, a terrific premise, and a fabulous setting ("everywhere!"), this story is sure to be a hit with readers who enjoy a ripping adventure through mythology and history. With a little less action (and much less blood) than either Bloody Jack (L.A. Meyer) or Pirates (Celia Rees), this book will still appeal to fans of both. There are a few intimate scenes but no body parts on stage--is there Star Trek Sex or not? If so, it's pretty subtle. The reader will have to decide.
The audiobook, adeptly read by Kim Mai Guest, kept me in the truck and making excuses to drive places so I could listen.