Author: Rae Carson
Release date: September 20, 2011
Published by: Greenwillow
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Lucero-Elisa de Riqueza, Princess of Orovalle has always known that she has a great destiny. On the day of her dedication, she was blessed by God himself with a Godstone. A blue stone the size of her thumbnail that lives in her naval and connects her to God, and to her destiny. Except there must be some sort of mistake! Elisa isn't a leader, she isn't special, and is actually incredibly wanting in her looks, her overweight and her courtliness. Her older sister who is the heir to their county's throne is the one with the beautiful good looks, the elegant figure and charismatic personality. When Elisa is married to King Alejandro, the question is why does he want to keep it a secret to his people? Why are they attacked on their way to his kingdom? And most importantly...What exactly is God's plan for Elisa?
My thoughts: Loved this! What a great fantasy adventure, coming-of-age, self-discovery story of a girl who has been raised to be more, who is found to be lacking. Of course on her epic journey from marriage day to her new kingdom, to being kidnapped she becomes more and more each day through the discovery of strength she has that she never knew existed. Elisa becomes a formidable figure whom everyone looks to for advice and leadership. This was such a great story. I literally read this in 2 evenings after my family was tucked into bed! It was THAT darn good! I did find that it was very predictable for me, but I was happy with the predictability. because it went right where I wanted it to. This reminded me so much of some of my favorites like Shannon Hale's Goose Girl and The Book of a Thousand Days, Tamora Pierce's Beka Cooper and Robin LaFevers' Grave Mercy.
Final thoughts: This was a fabulous debut novel! If you like fantasy at all, you have GOT TO try this one! You will not be disappointed! I can't wait to see what this author has in store for us next!