Author: Kristin Cashore
Rating: 5/5 stars
Blurb (from Goodreads):
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 king’s thug.
She never expects to fall in love with beautiful Prince Po.
She never expects to learn the truth behind her Grace—or the 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.
Okay okay, this has been on my tbr since I was about twelve. I have literally been intending to read this for six years and FINALLY got around to it!?!
Let me just say, I am not disappointed.
This is an easy five stars for me; the plot was interesting, the world-building fantastic and the characters just…oh God the characters are so so good.
Okay okay, I’m gonna start with the world-building; I am actually stunned. Like, I literally cannot comprehend how brilliant the world-building is. It’s not like it’s overly complicated, which is probably why I enjoyed this book – I didn’t constantly have to go looking for references like I did in stuff like The Selection and The Winner’s Curse, where the entire world’s history is mapped out in a single chapter disguised as a history lesson. Graceling keeps it simple and to the point and I am HERE for it.
Katsa as a main character is fascinating because she’s not perfect. She’s angry and headstrong, but she’s never emotionless or cold – in fact, the scenes where she gets into her worst places tend to be because she’s feeling so much love for people. Gah, I love her.
Po is brilliant too, and not gonna lie, I’m a little bit in love with him (though I am more so with his brother who we meet for all of three pages, go figure). His Grace was probably the best plot twist for me, I really was not expecting it – I mean, besides that plot twist at the end that I wouldn’t dream of spoiling.
Raffin and Giddon were great too as supporting characters and I REALLY hope we get to see more of them in future books. Plus Bitterblue. I love Bitterblue so much, I actually cannot WAIT until we get to the next book. Honestly this is turning into fragmented rambling but I’m just so HYPED about this series!!!
The plot is an odd one; it’s simultaneously very slow and very fast, but the whole story feels removed from time, if that makes sense? This is a fantasy book that will be loved for years to come; it’s not only relevant right now like some books are (Hunger Games, Divergent etc).
That’s all for now folks! Happy Holidays, and I’ll be back soon (hopefully) with a Christmassy post!!!
Lots of love,