Graceling by Kristin Cashore is a YA fantasy book that’s been out since 2008, and because of that I’ve heard a lot about it. Some bad, but also some good from people who I have similar opinions to. So I thought I would finally delve in and give the book a shot… and I bought all four books out in the series! So I was really hoping that I’d enjoy it!
Thankfully, I loved it!!
Now don’t get me wrong, this is very much written in that style of the late noughts. Thankfully for me, that’s hella nostalgic and so I loved it. Our main character, Katsa, does go a little overboard in the “I’m not feminine” department. But at the same time, as someone who isn’t the most feminine (and was a very tomboy-ish child) I did really like reading from her perspective.
There are some fantastic characters in this book, both on the “good” and the “evil” sides. And seeing how Katsa develops throughout the book, and how others have to develop in their opinions of her because of this, was fascinating and so well done. I loved how Cashore developed knowledge of the magical system (having a Grace, a power) and how this development allowed our MC to really come into her own and become stronger.
There’s also a fair amount of development for the worldbuilding. There are a variety of tense and uneasy alliances across this world and seeing them interact with each other was super interesting. We also got to see how these kingdoms fights impacted the regular people living within their boarders, which is something that’s often overlooked and I really enjoyed.
On CAWPILE I rated this: Characters: 9, Atmosphere: 9, Writing: 8, Plot: 8, Intrigue: 9, Logic: 9 and Enjoyment: 10 giving a 8.86 score and a 4.5* rating.
Highlight here for trigger warnings: animal abuse, child abuse, gaslighting, murder, pedophilia (implied), rape (allusions to), violence.
Overall, I’m really glad that I dove in and gave this series a shot because it was super fun and really interesting! I’m excited to read Fire in the near future and carry on learning more about the world. I just hope I get used to the weird names. If you’ve read the Graceling series let me know your thoughts! Did you love it, or did you hate it?? How come??
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