Friday, January 10, 2014

Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore Review

Title: Bitterblue
Author: Kristin Cashore
Age Group: Teen/Young Adult
Genre: Fantasy
Series: The Graceling Realm, book three
Star Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
The bottom line: The final installment in the Graceling Realm novels, Bitterblue is possibly the best of the trilogy, with everything a reader could possibly want: a great heroine, a nail-biting mystery, and a heartwarming romance--I loved it!

Bitterblue is now eighteen, after becoming queen of Monsea at a tender seven years old. Her advisers keep her ignorant of political issues, and she is beginning to suspect that the legacy her father left behind--full of death, blood, and darkness--has more repercussions than even she foresees. Driven by the urge to be a true queen and help her people, she starts digging for answers, and when she does, she doesn't exactly like what she finds..

What I enjoyed:
-Cashore's style of writing, big and epic and at the same time somehow intimate and tender
-The pacing of the novel, breakneck in some places and slower in others, creating a good rhythm
-Bitterblue herself, and her evolution from ignorant young woman to true queen--to watch her grow was an amazing thing
-The legacy that Bitterblue digs into, horrifying and terrible but necessary to know to help her people
-The huge, sprawling mystery that came with uncovering that legacy, perfectly executed--I was madly turning pages!
-The characters that the reader meets throughout the novel--far too many to name--but especially Saf and Teddy
-The cameos of previous characters, such as Katsa and Po and Giddon
-The constant surprises of the novel that had me alternately screaming and crying

What I didn't enjoy:
-There was nothing I didn't love about Bitterblue--it was an absolute triumph, a treasure of a book that I will cherish forever!

I loved all of the Graceling Realm novels, but Bitterblue shines as its true star! Wonderful, a favorite of the year! Next on deck: Precious Blood by Tonya Hurley!

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