Sunday, August 17, 2014 13:15

Review 281. Kristin Cashore – Bitterblue.

17623976Title: Bitterblue.
Author: Kristin Cashore.
Pages: 608.
Published: September 17th 2013.
Sort: Graceling Realm #3.
Graceling Realm #1. Graceling.
Graceling Realm #2. Fire.
When Queen Bitterblue took the throne of Monsea, she was a child, and her advisers ran the kingdom for her. Now she is beginning to question their decisions, especially how they handle the legacy of her father Leck, who who ruled through his Grace—a special talent for mind-altering—and his taste for darkness and violence. Bitterblue needs to know Monsea’s past to lead it into the future, so she begins exploring the city sreets at night, disguised and alone. As she does, she meets two thieves, who hold a key to the truth of Leck's reign. And one of them, with a Grace that he hasn't yet identified, holds a key to her heart.
Rating:

A very solid conclusion to a good series. Bitterblue wasn’t my favorite character from the series, but I liked how she developed and it was interesting to see the mystery reveal piece by piece.
Bitterblue ‘rules’ after the death of her tyrant father Leck. She has a feeling that her advisers keep things from her and they only give her easy tasks to keep her busy. Instead of pleading for information, Bitterblue takes things into her own hands. At night she leaves the castle dressed up as a kitchen maid in her castle. She meets the thieves Saf (who has an unknown Grace) and Teddy. Saf steals things Leck stole once, so he can give it back to the rightful owner.

I liked Bitterblue’s spark. She can be a bit whiny about her situation, but it’s hard for her to reclaim power after her father’s reign. Her advisers are lying to her and I like that she decides to get the information by going out on the street. It is dangerous for her, so it’s a brave decision. Her character definitely develops in the story and you can see she grows into her role as queen.

We also get to see all the old characters. Katsa and Po visit her and tell her about the agitation in other Kingdoms. The people want to seize the power and put their own choice on the throne. Katsa and Po help them out with their rebel group. It was fun to see them together, but I was surprised how weak Katsa seemed. She cried a lot and I don’t think she did that very often in Graceling. Fire also makes a small entrance in the story and it was great to see everything tie together that way.

The plot was a little slower in this book, but I didn’t mind. The story needs time to set up and it gave Leck’s madness more impact. The mystery around her advisers and what happened under her father’s hand was very interesting. I loved how we slowly unravel all the horrors and what is going on. It was a very effective way to show the broken kingdom Bitterblue must build up again. The mystery around her advisers and what happened under her father’s hand was very interesting. I loved how we slowly unravel all the horrors and what is going on.

I was a bit let down by the ending and the lack of romance (yes, that is coming from me, the girl who likes to have as little romance as possible). There is something going on with Bitterblue and Saf, but we never get a real conclusion to their attraction. It almost feels like there could be another book that will follow them, but overall I’m very satisfied with the conclusion to this series (but Fire will always be my favorite part)

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Mel@thedailyprophecy

Mel is a microbiology technician who is obsessed with Disney, fairytale retellings and fantasy. If she's not reading or blogging, she's either busy with gaming, hanging out with family or watching a TV show. She loves summer and bright nail polish. One of her dreams is to travel the world. She has found her Prince Charming and they are together for 7+ years.

21 comments:

  1. I haven't had a chance to read this one..it's been sitting on my shelf FOREVER which is a shame..I need to go ahead and read it soon! :)

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  2. I loved the first two in this series, so glad to see you loved this one. Great review.

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  3. Call me crazy but I'm STILL trying to get through Graceling. I guess I really should. Thanks for the review!

    Amber Elise @ Du Livre

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  4. I loved this series until I got to Bitterblue. Her strength as a heroine is undeniable, but the slow plot progression of the plot killed it for me.

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    1. Yes, I can see how this slow pace can be annoying to some.

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  5. I have read the first book and loved it, but for some reason (I think because I don't have the next two), I did not get around to reading the next couple. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed this one, even if not as much as the previous two. I will definitely be getting back to it at some point soon. Great review!

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  6. Reminds that I need to get to reading Bitterblue fast. I've already read Fire and Graceling and they were a bit meh for me. I don't know, I'm feeling guilty because everyone seems to love the whole series.

    But what makes me want to read this ASAP is because you mentioned that Leck's madness was thoroughly covered in this book. And Leck has always interested me. One of my main quibbles in Graceling is that we only got to see so little of him and he was really such an interesting villain. His birth and how he offed his father were things that I really want to gain an in-depth understanding.

    Thanks for this review. Mel.

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    1. Sometimes, a series just doesn't work for us :) But I think you will really like seeing more about his madness in this one!

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  7. I had to skim read this review, because I haven't read this series yet, but as soon as I get the time I will be sure to look into it! Really happy your enjoyed this one Mel :)

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  8. I vaguely remember Bitterblue in Graceling, but if I recall correctly, she was a bit of a brat there, wasn't she? I love stories where a royal girl has to start trusting herself in a kingdom full of people who deceive her. There's a certain thrill in that :D Plus, you liked it! Anything Mel likes is awesome.

    Faye at The Social Potato

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    1. I remember really liking Bitterblue! She was just young and a little naive.

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  9. You know, I agree about the lack of romance being a bit disappointing. I also prefer the romances I read in books to be toned down. In this case, though, the romance was present on the edges and just never got to be fully explored, which felt a bit frustrating. But I guess it works with the overall themes of frustration and murkiness in this novel. Glad to see you enjoyed this trilogy!

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    1. Exactly! Romance on the background is the best, but it could have been more prominent here.

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  10. Great review sweetie. <3 I am glad you enjoyed this book :D But damn it. I wanted you to fully love them all, lol :) But at least you did not hate it. <3 Sigh. I did love this book. But it was also the weakest of the three. But I still loved it to pieces. And omg. Leck. All that horror just about killed me. Yet I kind of wanted to read all the journals.. Heh. Anyway. The romance! Yess. That broke my heart. Damn it. But I have hope. I have hope that Saf will come back. <3 And have changed. Okay. Fine. That will probably not happen :p But still. I want it :)

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  11. So glad you liked it! I loved all the political intrigue, but I agree that Saf and Bitterblue's connection could have been given a little more attention. I liked Fire best of the three, but still enjoyed Graceling and Bitterblue very much! I also am hoping for more books set in this world. It feels like there is certainly more that could be told.

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    1. Her world has so much potential for more stories, I would love that.

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  12. I'm so glad you loved this one, Mel! I also really enjoyed it and watching as the mystery unraveled! Though I have to agree that the romance could have been a bit more explored! Great review :D

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  13. So I just gushed over this series in my comment on your review of Fire but I'll just say here that I thought this was such a fabulous conclusion, although yes a little slower paced. I am anxiously waiting for Krisitn Cashore to write something else!

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    1. Me too! She earned her spot on my list for favorite authors.

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  14. I loved Graceling and then really enjoyed Fire and Bitterblue. I really like all the political intrigue and all the twists and romance and kick-butt characters. I'm glad you've been enjoying this series!

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