Archive for the ‘High Fantasy’ Category

Princess of the Midnight Ball

Saturday, July 11th, 2009

princessmidnightball By Jessica Day George [LibraryThingAmazon]

Every night, the twelve princesses of Westfalin escape from their locked rooms and go dancing, and none of them will – or can – say where they dance. For his part, with the war over young soldier Galen is happy to work as a simple under-gardener in the palace. But as the lovely Princess Rose and her sisters grow more exhausted and despairing, and the country begins to tear itself apart, Galen must use all of his wits and courage to untangle the mystery of the princesses’ enchantment – and just possibly win the hand of Princess Rose himself.

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Bookathon: Graceling

Saturday, June 6th, 2009

Book Five
Starting time: 8:55 PM
Ending time: 2:42 AM

Title: Graceling
Author: Kristin Cashore
Genre: High Fantasy
Pages: 471

Summary: Everyone fears Gracelings — and they fear Katsa most of all, for she’s Graced with the ability to kill. Her uncle, the King, uses her as a strong arm to bully his nobles, but Katsa hates being treated like a mad dog, and is determined to get out from under his thumb. Doing that, however, thrusts her into some international intrigue she never could have imagined…

Thoughts: Holy crap, did I love this book. It isn’t perfect, but it’s delightful and exciting and I love Katsa (and Po, and Bitterblue, and Raffin, and etc…). Really, it had me completely at this exchange:

Sighing, Helda carried the dress from the bathing room. “It would look stunning, My Lady,” she called, “with your dark hair and eyes.”

Katsa yanked at one of the more stubborn knots in her hair. She spoke to the bubbles gathered on the surface of the water. “If there’s anyone I wish to stun at dinner, I’ll hit him in the face.”

This book is totally worth a full review someday, and I will absolutely a) reread it, and b) pick up Cashore’s next book when it comes out. Five cupcakes.

The Beka Cooper Trilogy: Terrier and Bloodhound

Wednesday, May 27th, 2009

terrier By Tamora Pierce [Pierce at LibraryThingPierce at Amazon]

For years, Beka has dreamed of becoming one of the Provost’s Dogs, the guards who keep law and order in the kingdom of Tortall. Now she has joined their ranks, but her talent for sniffing out conspiracies and going after the powerful criminals behind them may get her killed before she has a chance to enjoy it. But Beka’s got one weapon no Rat can escape: she can hear the voices of the dead.

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Dragon Slippers

Sunday, March 29th, 2009

dragonslippersBy Jessica Day George [LibraryThingAmazon]

Creel’s family doesn’t have much money, so her aunt hits upon the idea of sending Creel to the local dragon. But Creel isn’t interested in waiting around for a knight to come rescue her, and instead bargains with the dragon for her freedom – and a pair of very special blue slippers. On the road to the capitol where she plans to seek her fortune as a dressmaker, Creel befriends another dragon who is very surprised by her footwear, but it’s not until she reaches the capitol and finds herself embroiled in a tangle of conspiracy, diplomatic intrigue, magic, and a very cute prince that Creel begins to suspect that her slippers are more powerful than she ever imagined.

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The Song of the Lioness Quartet

Friday, January 30th, 2009

Alanna: The First AdventureAlanna: The First Adventure, In the Hand of the Goddess, The Woman Who Rides Like A Man, Lioness Rampant
By Tamora Pierce [Pierce at LibraryThingPierce at Amazon]

Women in Tortall are not warriors, but 11-year-old Alanna would much rather become a knight than a lady or a sorceress — so she hatches a plan to trade places with her twin brother. Disguised as a boy named Alan, she enters training as a page, hoping to become a knight before she is discovered. As Alanna works to prove herself, learning both fighting and magic, she becomes friends with Prince Jonathan — and with George Cooper, a rogue who is the King of Thieves. But all of her friendships and new skills may not be enough when only Alanna realizes that the prince’s cousin, a powerful sorcerer himself, is plotting to take the throne to Tortall… And it seems like only Alanna will be able to stop him. (Very mild uncovered spoilers behind the cut.)

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Old-School Review: The Chronicles of Prydain

Saturday, January 17th, 2009

It’s been a while, hasn’t it? Mea culpa.

prydain1 By Lloyd Alexander [series on LibraryThingseries on Amazon]

Taran longs to be a hero, but he seems destined to be merely an Assistant Pig-Keeper. However, even that’s a pretty big responsibility when the pig in question can tell the future, and when the evil Horned King, agent of the Death Lord Arawn, has his eye on her. With a ragtag bunch of companions, including the spirited Princess Eilonwy, the bumbling bard Fflewddur Flam, the loyal beast of indeterminate species Gurgi, the grumpy dwarf Doli, and more, Taran must fight first the Horned King, then Arawn himself – and discover who he is and what he really wants to be in the process.

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Fly By Night

Sunday, October 12th, 2008

Fly By Night By Frances Hardinge [LibraryThingAmazon]

A paraphrased conversation from your bloggers:

Jess: You know what book was awesome? Fly By Night.

Becky: It really was. Too bad we read it way back in 2005, before we started Active Voice. It totally would have gotten a five.

Jess: Maybe we can do, like, a “this is the kind of book that gets a five” joint review.

Becky: Yes! Jess, you are so smart and also pretty.

Jess: I know.

(Jess may have edited this paraphrased conversation a tad.)

When 12-year-old Mosca falls in with a low-rent poet and conman named Eponymous Clent in an effort to escape her miserable, provincial life, she has no idea that she’ll soon be at the center of a dangerous web of political intrigue and rebellion. But no sooner have Mosca, Clent, and Mosca’s homicidal goose Saracen arrived in the city of Mandelion than Mosca finds herself adrift in a world of radicals, conspirators, zealots, mad dukes, highwaymen, heretics, and murderers. Mosca will need all her cunning and grit just to survive. Luckily, she’s got plenty of both.

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Old-School Review: The Protector of the Small Quartet (First Test, Page, Squire, Lady Knight)

Sunday, September 7th, 2008

First TestBy Tamora Pierce [Pierce at LibraryThingPierce at Amazon]

Though for ten years, it’s been legal for girls to train as pages and aspire to Knighthood, Keladry of Mindelan is the first one who has actually done so — and being legal doesn’t make it easy. She’s put on probation as a page, something never done with a boy; she’s hazed by bullies; she’s treated unfairly by the training masters. No one, it seems, wants to see a lady knight. But Kel is determined, and she won’t let anything — or anyone — stand in her way.

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Dragon’s Egg

Sunday, April 6th, 2008

Dragon’s EggBy Sarah L. Thomson [LibraryThingAmazon]

Mella’s got the rare talent of being a Keeper, someone who can communicate with and care for dragons. She tends the herd of farm dragons who produce eggs for her father’s inn, a tough job for a 12-year-old girl. But then everything changes—a knight and his squire, Roger, come to the inn in search of old dragons, the kind who fly and breathe fire, claiming they’re about to return to the country and need to be stopped before they become a threat. But Mella finds the dragon first, and as it dies she swears a solemn promise to take its egg to the dragon hatching grounds. Now, with Roger’s help, she’s got to carry out her promise—and unravel the mystery of what drove off the dragons in the first place…

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The Dark Hills Divide

Saturday, February 9th, 2008

The Dark Hills DivideBy Patrick Carman [LibraryThingAmazon]

As every summer, Alexa Daley is staying in Bridewell with her father while he conducts important political business. But she has decided that this summer will be different: Alexa is bound and determined to find a way outside of the wall that protects the civilized cities from the outside world. And when she does so, she develops the magical ability to speak to animals—and discovers a conspiracy that might just doom the world as she knows it.

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