Author: Kristin Cashore
Series: Graceling Realm #1
Genre: YA Fiction, Fantasy, Romance, Adventure
Synopsis: In a world where people born with an extreme skill – called a Grace – are feared and exploited, Katsa carries the burden of the skill even she despises: the Grace of killing. She lives under the command of her uncle Randa, King of the Middluns, and is expected to execute his dirty work, punishing and torturing anyone who displeases him.
When she first meets Prince Po, who is Graced with combat skills, Katsa has no hint of how her life is about to change.
She never expects to become Po’s friend.
She never expects to learn a new truth about her own Grace – or about a terrible secret that lies hidden far away…a secret that could destroy all seven kingdoms with words alone.
I am just astounded with Graceling! I never was a high fantasy reader but this book is convincing me I should read more of it. I do not just love Cashore’s writing. I practically worship her writing.
The characters were extraordinary! Katsa is definitely one of the most kick butt heroines I have ever read. She is courageous, smart, daring, and selfless. The things she would do to help the people she cares and loves for are dangerous but she takes the risk anyway. She is not the one to fling herself into danger unless she knows she can do it or she absolutely has to. Katsa is a very good role-model for children and I admire her greatly. She is a very respectable character. Po was a fantastic male main character. He was respectful, tough, caring, and was not at all controlling which was very refreshing as I am seeing many controlling male characters in the Young Adult genre this year. He was a very swoon-worthy character. Do not get the idea that these characters are perfect though. They are very flawed but the way they overcome those flaws throughout the book was made them so admirable. Bitterblue(I love her name) is a strong and fine character to. The way she reacted to things fitted very well to what she is: a princess but also a child. Leck, the villain in Graceling was very evil and cruel. The way he used his Grace was horrible. A very well made villain indeed.
The story is an adventure story meaning that there was a lot of traveling. I was surprised as books with lots of traveling in them normally bore me easily but Graceling did not. In fact I was totally enraptured in the traveling. Reading about the different places and settings was very interesting and enjoyable. The romance between Katsa and Po was very well-developed! There was no annoying insta-love or the annoying I-will-not-be-with-you-because-I-am-dangerouse thing either. Reading about Katsa and Po’s developing relationship was very entertaining. The climax did seem a bit rushed though. There was so much build-up and then it just..stopped. I did enjoy reading about the Seven Kingdoms.
The way the story was written is lovely! The words flowed very. The exchange of dialogue between characters never felt forced and the descriptions of the places was detailed but not overly detailed.
Graceling is a very endearing and unique novel and if I ever met Kristen Cashore-whom I love- my reaction would be:
I give Graceling 4 out of 5 Stars