Author: Kirstin Cashore
Read Time: Read it over ten days. It was such an effort. I could have ripped through it all in one night, and then, it would have been over...
Tag Words: The Seven Kingdoms, Katsa, Po, Fire, Graceling, BIR12, Favorite novels, favorite series, Worth the wait!
Eight years after Graceling, Bitterblue is the queen of a country trying to hide it's darkest secrets from her. To learn more about the kind of kingdom Leck left behind, Bitterblue escapes into the streets of Bitterblue city, into the Story rooms and under bridges.
What is waiting for her there, she may not be able to face alone. And with the Council being needed elsewhere, alone is just what Bitterblue feels, alone with too many secrets, and questions, and lies where answers should be.
Kristin Cashore is a multi-level genius. This is never more apparent than when reading her latest novel.
She weaves romance, and intrigue into the same tapestry and sets it ablaze with a myriad of secrets you must work to untangle after the blaze. I am truly awed every time I read (or re-read) one of her works.
You have your favorites within the seven kingdoms series; a favorite heroine, storyline, weapon, love interest, land, and line and most likely these are spread out between the books. However, you still have to bow to whatever new character, creed or creation Cashore has just cooked up. You retain your favorites while acknowledging that none are less special than the others and the newest edition may be the best...until the next book, of course.
That's what happened to me while reading Bitterblue. I was able to retain my old loyalties while acquiescing to the fact that the latest journey is the most incredible of the three. I'm sure four will top it. I will wait a decade to read it, if necessary.
I am lucky enough to have read this book very early, however, I could have been asked to wait five more years to crack the spine, and it would have been worth it in the end.
Bitterblue is a story that reminds me of sunken treasure newly brought to the surface. Just as the secrets woven through the storyline first seem like too many and too murky to fathom, the longer you rub the dirt and grime away, the more you see it shine.
Notes on the Names:
I love Bitterblue, Katsa and Fire. The heroines, and the names. But you wanted some new names, right? Well, Ashen, and Fox and Sapphire, called Saf were freshly-minted choices from the Seven Kingdoms. I loved them, though they seem so gender-bending. Ashen is a girl, as is Fox, however the sparkling Sapphire is a hero, not a heroine.
Thoughts on the Cover:
I flipped out when I saw this cover, didn't you? It's so perfect for the book in a myriad of ways I can't wait to discuss with somebody.
Parental Book Review *spoilers*
Possible attempted rape.
Sex between two different couples.
Death, violent attacks, and suicide.
The acts that Leck performed are a crux of the novel. It's not so much the details though, as just the presented idea that is appalling. However, I think true fans should read this one no matter what.