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04 June 2012

Bitterblue (Seven Kingdoms #3)

Bitterblue is the third book in the Seven Kingdoms series by Kristin Cashore - a great fantasy series that we hope will continue on for many, many books. In the Kingdoms when people are born with an extreme skill it is called a grace and the person a graceling.

Bitterblue is the queen of Monsea. She became the queen when her horrible father was killed ten years ago. Unfortunately, the kingdom is still recovering from King Leck's reign. Leck was a graceling who had the gift of mind control - and he used it to abuse everyone around him while telling their minds that they liked it.

Bitterblue relies on her advisers to tell her how things are going outside of the castle. But she is beginning to feel like she needs to see her city for herself (other than her annual tour of the nicest parts). When she disguises herself and sneaks out of the caste, she is not completely surprised that the city is not as wonderful as she has been told. Many of the buildings are falling down and many of the people cannot read.

What follows is the story of a queen beginning to claim the power of her office and try to help her people - but, of course, it is not as simple as all of that. Someone is killing those in the city who are trying to improve things and Bitterblue is not sure who she can trust. When her friends Katsa and Po - who are on a secret council to overthrow bad kings - come to visit she may have a chance to change things.

Though no review could accurately capture the magical writing of Kristin Cashore, please know that you need to read this series. She is one of the best writers around today and deserves awards and accolades left and right! I will be rereading the series immediately.

Cashore, Kristin. (2012). Bitterblue. New York: Dial Books.

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