Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Hedgewitch Queen

The Hedgewitch Queen by Lilith Saintcrow

Vianne di Rocancheil is a lady waiting at the Court of Arquitaine, where she studies her books, watches for intrigue, and shepherds her foolhardy Princesse through the glittering whirl. Court is a sometimes-unpleasant waltz, especially for the unwary, but Vianne treads its measured steps well. 

Unfortunately, the dance has changed. Treachery is afoot in gilded and velvet halls. A sorcerous conspiracy is unleashed, with blood, death, and warfare close behind. Vianne must flee, carrying the Great Seal of Arquitaine with her. This is the one thing the conspirators need to rule, and they won’t rest until they have it. A life of dances, intrigues, and fashion has not prepared Vianne for this. Nor has it prepared her for Tristan d’Arcenne, Captain of the King’s Guard and player in the most dangerous games conspiracy can devise. Yet to save her country and avenge her Princesse, Vianne will become what she must and do whatever is required. 

A Queen can do no less.
Synopsis by Goodreads.

For an ebook costing no more than $2.99, I was delighted to discover that The Hedgewitch Queen was in fact quite a good read. The adventure was paced just fast enough to keep the reader on the edge of her seat, yet slow enough to gather the necessary details and characterization of the book. I loved the development of the characters; I loved watching Vianne change into a more Queenly figure. Yes, she cried a bit, and yes, she questions her judgement a lot, but I thought it worked well with who she was as a character. Tristan was also very well-developed. He had depth, a 3D-ness that made him almost tangible. And the relationship between Vianne and Tristan was plausible. It was very real. 

I also thought that it was very clever of Lilith Saintcrow to include a language very similar to French. However, I'm not as familiar with French as I'd like to be, so some of the words were frustrating to read. But I loved the world that Lilith Saintcrow created. It was very descriptive and imaginable, I only wish I had a map to visualize the world.

Overall, I highly recommend The Hedgewitch Queen for anyone who likes Sharon Shinn's Summer's at Castle Auburn, Maria Snyder's Touch of Power, or Rachel Neumeier's Lord of the Changing Winds. The book is a blend of action and adventure, with a dash of magic and romance. Very very well done!

My rating:


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