The Graceling Series by Kristen Cashore

Saturday, July 21, 2012 11:33 PM
I finally got around to reading the Graceling series this summer. I don't know why it never occurred to me before. I had seen the Graceling cover in bookstores. I was intrigued, but it just never happened. But now I got to read the whole series in order without having to wait for any books. I love when that happens.

I would recommend this series to anyone who loves young adult fantasy or just fantasy in general. Each book also has romance. I loved them!

1. Graceling The premise of this book is that in the seven kingdoms, there are Gracelings. Gracelings can be distinguished by their different colored eyes. Their two different colored eyes settle later in life, and the age when a Graceling is revealed varies from person to person. They can have a Grace in cooking, winemaking, and pretty much anything. Their Grace can be completely useless, like swimming, or it can be of great use to the kingdom, like our protagonist's Grace. Katsa is the niece of the Middleuns king, and she has one blue eye and one green. She has been Graced with a fighting skill that allows her to fight off anyone with just her hands and feet. She is deadly and her uncle has used that to his advantage by making her his personal thug. She punishes anybody that crosses him or makes him look bad. But Katsa doesn't want to be her uncle's "lady killer" anymore. And when a Liened prince, Prince Po, comes into the picture and she starts uncovering some perplexing secrets, things change drastically, and she starts to learn more about her Grace and herself. 

2. Fire - In Fire, the reader is taken to another land apart from the seven kingdoms, across the Great Grays to the east: The Dells. In The Dells, there are no Gracelings with different colored eyes but there are monsters of extraordinary colors. Rich Dellians collect their bright colored furs and the King's Army shoots down raptor monsters to save themselves from being eaten. Fire is a monster, but she is a human monster of great beauty with the ability to control others' minds. While she finds no pleasure in hurting others or taking advantage of them with her mind control, she is afraid that she will turn into her father Cansrel, who was a horrible human monster and killed and wreaked havoc for enjoyment. The Dells suffered under the rule of a horrible king and his advisor, Cansrel, and now two lords gather their armies to fight the new King Nash who barely holds his throne after his father's destructive reign has ended. Now Fire is sorely needed for her mind control abilities as spies are everywhere and mysterious strangers are appearing on her estate. As she begins to discover whether or not she is truly a monster like her father, she meets Prince Brigan, who is someone that she cannot control with her mind.


3. Bitterblue Bitterblue is the third book in the Graceling series, and it tells the story of the caring, inexperienced queen Bitterblue. Bitterblue has come a long way since her appearance in the first book, Graceling. After her father's death, she became queen of Monsea at the young age of ten. In Bitterblue, she is now 18 and struggling to rule a kingdom she knows nothing about. While King Leck's terrible reign is over, it is difficult to forget all the suffering he caused and hard to decide whether people were guilty of crimes they committed during his reign or really under the King's poisonous influence. Bitterblue doesn't know who to trust, and she feels like her advisers are lying to her about the state of the kingdom. She is kept busy in the castle with charters and queenly business, but she is desperate to learn more about her kingdom. She sneaks out of the castle one night and into the east city, and she finds a story room under a bridge and a pair of skilled thieves. She learns more about her kingdom from these thieves than she ever knew, and she also opens her heart for the first time. 

Read this series when you have the time. Try to read them in order because the story unfolds wonderfully when you read them one after the other. There is just so much to enjoy in these books. The storyline, the characters, and the world Cashore builds. Love them!

Happy reading, 


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