Book Review: Graceling by Kristine Cashore


In a world where people born with an exceptional skill, known as a Grace, are both feared and exploited, Katsa carries the burden of a skill even she despises: the Grace of killing.

Feared by the court and shunned by those her own age, the darkness of her Grace casts a heavy shadow over Katsa’s life. Yet she remains defiant: when the King of Lienid’s father is kidnapped she investigates, and stumbles across a mystery. Who would want to kidnap the old man, and why? And who was the extraordinary Graced man whose fighting abilities rivalled her own?

The only thing Katsa is sure of is that she no longer wants to kill. The intrigue around this kidnapping offers her a way out – but little does she realise, when she takes it, that something insidious and dark lurks behind the mystery. Something spreading from the shadowy figure of a one-eyed king...

Title: Graceling
Series: Graceling Realm (Book 1)
Author: Kristin Cahore
Genre: YA Fiction, Romance, Fantasy, Action
Published: October 1, 2008
My Rate:  ♥♡♡

I first saw this back when I was actively following booklists and visiting bookstores on a daily basis (that was junior year of high school). I call that the twilight era of my life. Anywho, I saw this one time with the girls I consider my bookclub and I mentally noted to read it but never got the chance until today but my point is, I was really excited to read this book. I liked fantasy and a touch of princes and kingdoms.

In detail:
The dystopia. I loved the seven kingdoms, the realistic cultural differences one kingdom had from another. The originality of the graces. The thought of having mismatched eyes. I must say, it was very well thought of. Cahore's debut is a compelling one, what with the mystery of the world she penned and the writing finesse she exemplified in the novel. Even though it's in third person POV, the author gives us the chance to relate with the characters. But this, is not without flaw as you might have guessed, seeing I scored only a three. Read on then.

The characters were beautiful in their own way. I liked them individually. I am drawn to Katsa, like no other female assassins who's just as vulnerable and safe inside as she's bold and heartless outside. Po was cute and I personally like his real name, Greening, better. The other boys in there were hardly necessary but I liked them there anyway. My favorite among the boys is Prince Raffin, because I am always a future-kings-that-would-give-up-the-crown-to-be-a-doctor fanclub member.

The major flaw that I found in this book, like many other people, is that it's overshadowing idea that marriage will trap you. Say What?! I will not be saying it again, so just reread what I wrote. Katsa refuses to marry, despite being in-so-called-love because of she thinks it will enslave her and will make her lose herself. This book also had but what I consider a minor set back -- > everything developed very slowly. Until, of course, that next chapter that made me wonder if the book I was reading might have lost some of its pages. This and that was suddenly feeling things and poof one thing led to another. I hated that drastic shift. I was thinking, "What in the Middluns?!"

But on a more positive side, I think it was a very good twist in the end. I didn't see that happening at all. It was very unpredictable, as the many events in the book. I hope the readers of this book will read it 'til the end to catch it.

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