Series: Graceling Realm, #1
Published by Harcourt on 2008-10-01
Length: 471 pages
Reviewing eBook from TN R.E.A.D.S.
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.
When she first meets Prince Po, 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...
WARNING: There will be copious amounts of fangirling in this review. Graceling by Kristin Cashore is by far one of my favorite reads ever!!! I’m a fantasy lover, that’s not a secret, so how this book went under my radar for so long I don’t know. It has all the elements I love: strong female heroine, gorgeous male lead, complex plot, unique world-building, and stunning imagery. Again how did I miss this book?!
Katsa is the king’s niece, born with the killing grace (meaning that she can kill anyone, anyway without meaning to). She’s strong-willed, competent, and independent. But that’s not what I love about her. I love that she fights what she is. She doesn’t like killing, but has been forced her whole life to do so for the king. BUT now she’s had enough.
Prince Po is also a graceling but his life has been very different from Katsa’s. He plans to show her what she can do out from under the king. He’s charismatic, kind, and loved which makes loving him (and in our case shipping him) all the easier. His role in Katsa’s life is significant and by far one that I enjoyed.
The plot centers around finding out why Po’s grandfather was kidnapped, who was behind it, and stopping the person from gaining more power. The author does an amazing job of building the world, the characters, and immersing the reader in their lives. I just….WOW!!! That’s all I have to say. If you enjoy young adult (though I personally would classify this one as 16+), fantasy, and of course a dash of romance, this book is a must read!