Thursday, July 3, 2014

The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen

Kelsea is nineteen now and has been raised in a cottage near the woods.  She's not allowed to wander far, has been training in education and fight techniques, and she knows she's destined for greater things.  When the guard shows up to take her to the castle, she doesn't want to go.  She has no choice, though.  She's to be the next queen.

Harper and Edelweiss gave me the opportunity to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be available for purchase next week, so grab a copy then.

I love grand adventures with fantasy, soldiers, and strong young characters.  This one has all that and more.  I really got caught up in the story and was anxious about how the author would end it.  She did very well at pulling all the pieces together.  This is one I will buy for my library.

Kelsea is traveling with royal guards.  She knows they don't like her and she doesn't trust them, but they are the best she has.  As time goes on and she gets to know them better, she finds they have their own losses and motivation for being a royal guard.  They are serious, don't talk much, and are all business.  She'll find she needs them when there are sudden attacks against her.

Even when she's being crowned queen, she ends up with a knife in her back.  If that's not bad enough, she finds an assassin in her private bathing room.  Really, how to do you defend yourself nude?  She does, though.

She finds the kingdom is not treating the people right, and she intends to fix that.  That causes three deadly problems.  The taxman who sold the slaves is not happy; he's the one that is trying to kill her.  The Queen of the next town is ready to take her down because she's been selling the slaves from the other kingdom and wants the money as well as no competitors.  And the King that had been in place isn't excited about being evicted from the keep.  Kelsea has opened up a bucket of worms and her guards know it.

This is a very busy story with a touch of romance in the background.  I truly enjoyed reading this book and wouldn't mind reading more of Kelsea.  She's won the battle but I don't think the war is over yet.

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