Graceling meets TheSelection in debut novelist Victoria Aveyard's sweeping tale of seventeen-year-old Mare, a common girl whose once-latent magical power draws her into the dangerous intrigue of the king's palace. Will her power save her or condemn her? Mare Barrow's world is divided by blood--those with common, Red blood serve the Silver- blooded elite, who are gifted with superhuman abilities. Mare is a Red, scraping by as a thief in a poor, rural village, until a twist of fate throws her in front of the Silver court. Before the king, princes, and all the nobles, she discovers she has an ability of her own.
To cover up this impossibility, the king forces her to play the role of a lost Silver princess and betroths her to one of his own sons. As Mare is drawn further into the Silver world, she risks everything and uses her new position to help the Scarlet Guard--a growing Red rebellion--even as her heart tugs her in an impossible direction. One wrong move can lead to her death, but in the dangerous game she plays, the only certainty is betrayal.
Wow! This was such a page turner that I am feeling the effects of staying up way too late reading. Mare is a typical heroine in that I felt myself telling her as every other character in the book told her--don't trust anyone. Of course, she trusts and pays the price. I saw it coming, but I could not stop reading it anyway. The publisher compared it to Graceling and The Selection, and I agree. However, I was reminded of The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima. Any book that reminds me of The Demon King is a definite good read. At this point, the only bad thing that I have to say about this book is that the sequel will not be out until next year. That is too long to make me wait. Alas, I will have to find some other good reads in the meantime.