Friday, April 26, 2013

Review: Fire & Thorn Trilogy by Rae Carson

Book 1: The Girl of Fire and Thorns
Author: Rae Carson 
Hardcover: 423 Pages
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Once a century, one person is chosen for greatness. Elisa is the chosen one. But she is also the younger of two princesses, the one who has never done anything remarkable. She can't see how she ever will. Now, on her sixteenth birthday, she has become the secret wife of a handsome and worldly king—a king whose country is in turmoil. A king who needs the chosen one, not a failure of a princess.And he's not the only one who seeks her. Savage enemies seething with dark magic are hunting her. A daring, determined revolutionary thinks she could be his people's savior. And he looks at her in a way that no man has ever looked at her before. Soon it is not just her life, but her very heart that is at stake.Elisa could be everything to those who need her most. If the prophecy is fulfilled. If she finds the power deep within herself. If she doesn’t die young.Most of the chosen do. 

Book 2: The Crown of Embers
Author: Rae Carson 
Hardcover: 410 Pages
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
In the sequel to the acclaimed The Girl of Fire and Thorns, a seventeen-year-old princess turned war queen faces sorcery, adventure, untold power, and romance as she fulfills her epic destiny. Elisa is the hero of her country. She led her people to victory against a terrifying enemy, and now she is their queen. But she is only seventeen years old. Her rivals may have simply retreated, choosing stealth over battle. And no one within her court trusts her-except Hector, the commander of the royal guard, and her companions. As the country begins to crumble beneath her and her enemies emerge from the shadows, Elisa will take another journey. With a one-eyed warrior, a loyal friend, an enemy defector, and the man she is falling in love with, Elisa crosses the ocean in search of the perilous, uncharted, and mythical source of the Godstone's power. That is not all she finds. A breathtaking, romantic, and dangerous second volume in the Fire and Thorns trilogy.
Fantasy genre is my favorite. The first Saga I ever read was Robert Jordan's Wheel Of Time. Those who are into that genre know the significance. I was introduced to Rae Carson by a friend of mine. She retweeted one of her tweets. Her first novel was in reduced price. I downloaded it from Amazon. 

Last week, I wanted to read something. And I found "The Girl of Fire and Thorns" on my new purchases. I started reading it without having a clue what is this story about. It is the third time I am doing this, and I was surprised again in a very good way. 

Rae Carson created a very beautiful universe. Her lead heroine sixteen year old Princess Lucero - Elisa is the most wonderful female character I have ever read for a very long time. We can see her metamorphosis throughout the book. It is remarkable. In the beginning of the book, she is a naive teenager. In the end of it, she is a mature girl - woman, who has encountered death, destruction, changed her mind for the world, made friends but also have felt the loss of loved ones. 

The most challenging thing for a writer is to make their characters humanlike, believable but also wiser in the end of a story. Rae Carson's Elisa reminded me my favorite quote from E. E. Cummings' "It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are." 

In "The Crown of Embers", this metamorphosis continues. Elisa is now a seventeen years old Queen and has to find the courage to become the Queen her new town needs. She is trying to be diplomatic, clever, but politics in a Royal court is not that easy. Decisions have to be made. Decisions that lead to the death of several people. Decisions that deceive her loved ones. But still, she has to take those steps in order to understand who she is and what she really wants. 

From the beginning of her life, everyone told her that she had a destiny. That God selected her to service Him, as a champion. She is the one who can save other people's lives. That responsibility is in her shoulders an enormous weight she cannot stop thinking about. In the end, she realizes where her true power comes from. In the end, she is ready to face not only herself, but also all the others, friends or foes.

I am now, waiting patiently for book 3 "The Bitter Kingdom" to come out this August. When I will read it, I will update this post with my thoughts on the ending! Happy Reading!

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