Title & Author: The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen
Genre: YA Fantasy
Published: October 31st 2013
Where this book came from: I own it as an audiobook
Rating: 4.5 Stars
The Tearling is one of three feudal societies that bow to a fourth, Mortmesne, which is ruled by the cruel and powerful Red Queen. Her true identity is unknown.
The main character Kelsea, was raised in secret and after her mother, the previous queen of the Tearling, died. She was raised by Barty and Carlin, loyal to her mother, but because what they teach her is selective she knows little detail of her kingdoms sordid past or present. Despite many who would see her dead, Kelsea turns eighteen and is escorted to the capital by the remaining queen’s guard. Counselled and protected by the faithful Lazarus the Mace, Kelsea claims her rightful place on the throne and navigate the Tearling towards a brighter future. In the process she violates a treaty and insults the Red Queen, resulting in an imminent invasion. Kelsea’s journey from girl to queen is full of danger, betrayal, magic and a dashing outlaw named The Fetch.
This is the first book in a trilogy.
My thoughts & reactions
I thoroughly enjoyed this story. I wasn’t sure at the beginning but I loved reading how Kelsea came into her own as a queen. The other characters were also enjoyable and by the end of the book I was quite attached to them. There were some slower parts but I felt they were necessary to establish the trilogy, and I was never bored by the details. Kelsea is one of those characters you cheer for, she does her best to clean up her crooked kingdom. Neither the magic nor the romance took center stage in this book, and I appreciated that. Her sapphire helps her in time of great need, but she is often left to figure things out for herself and she cannot use the magic at will. As for romance, aside from a few flirtatious thoughts about The Fetch, Kelsea is wholly focused on being a good queen for her people. She was described as being a plain girl and that was also enjoyable, as so many main characters are beautiful or striking in some manner. Kelsea also loves books which made her a very relatable character for me!
In the end the bad guys made me cringe and shiver, while the good guys made me want to cheer and take up arms alongside them! If that’s how I feel by the end of a story then the author has done her job and I consider it a win.
To purchase The Queen Of The Tearling http://www.bookdepository.com/Queen-Tearling-Erika-Johansen/9780857502476
A link to the author http://www.harpercollins.com/cr-107550/erika-johansen