Sunday, 21 August 2011

Graceling by Kristin Cashore

From Amazon:
Katsa has been able to kill a man with her bare hands since she was eight. She's a Graceling, one of the rare people in her land born with an extreme skill. As niece of the king, she should be able to live a life of privilege, but Graced as she is with killing, she is forced to work as the kings thug. When she first meets Prince Po, Graced with combat skills, Katsa has no hint of how her life is about to change. She never expects to become Pos friend. She never expects to learn a new truth about her own Graceor about a terrible secret that lies hidden far away . . . a secret that could destroy all seven kingdoms with words alone. With elegant, evocative prose and a cast of unforgettable characters, debut author Kristin Cashore creates a mesmerizing world, a death-defying adventure, and a heart-racing romance that will consume you, hold you captive, and leave you wanting more.

This is the debut novel of Kristin Cashore, one of my favourite authors. It has a very compelling story and a wonderful romance between the two main characters. The romance story easily beats out Twilight, in my opinion. Any romance that involves one of the people watching the other person sleep through a window, isn't a romance. And Graceling has none of that. The friendships are real and, most importantly, the characters are real. The beginning of the romance was a bit fast, although it started out as a friendship so it didn't just appear out of the blue. The plot is also very engaging. I found myself happy, sad and tense right along with the characters. There is a plot twist near the end of the book that always takes me by surprise, even though I've read it four times now. The epilogue is also very satisfying. All in all, it is a very good fantasy book and I highly suggest it to anyone who has a love of the genre, or anything historical.

Quote of the day: "I have no doubt that you are more than capable of bringing the Monsean queen and my son and the rest of my sons and a hundred Nanderan kittens through an onslaught of howling raiders if you chose to." - Kristin Cashore, Graceling