This was a great read. I enjoyed several parts of this book, most notably the awesome monster creation (they were like these fantastical nightmarish beasts) and the world-building. Vega Jane is a really written character, everyone had some decent development throughout the story, and I really liked reading this.
However, I feel that the quality of writing also went downhill at parts of the story. Plus, it was a bit predictable especially during the Duelem. Vega finding all these magical weapons and protective items was quite reminiscent of classic fantasy, however, which was a nice touch.
The last fight scene in the Duelem was easily one of my favourite parts in this book, but I kinda wish that the whole story had been like that. More often than not, I found myself yelling at the main character, "Just LEAVE the village right now! There's nothing stopping you! Just go into the Quag, you've got Destin, you can fly, you can go right now?? Nobody's watching you, just get away from this place..."
Nope, she takes a while to actually try and do that.
The book's also set in a male-dominated society where women are constantly belittled for being female, but...it's not written very well to illustrate that. Where men keep referring to women as "female", addressing them as such, I mean it sounds a bit over the top. Not quite how you ought to write a patriarchal society. Vega Jane is apparently the only female character in the entire book who stands up to it or dares to challenge it.
I really did enjoy the first several chapters or so, but then started to realise that the author's world-building consisted of...just substituting alien words for normal ones.
Like, instead of "year", he says "session". Instead of "minute", he says "sliver". And so on. It's really the same thing, but does have a nice feeling to it.
Unfortunately I don't feel compelled to read the sequel. I started skimming when they started doing fight scenes because it was pretty obvious what was going to happen (except for the end of the last fight).
Overall I'm giving it 3/5.