Haven (Chronicles of Warshard #1) is the 2nd place winner of World's Best Story!
Princess Haven was never meant to be Queen.
Her immortality has saved her time and time again, but when the last of her royal family dies at her feet, she is next in line to rule a nation on the brink of war. With no formal training on how to be Queen, Haven must rise to the occasion with the help of her best friends, and personal guard, or risk losing everyone she has ever loved.
With war to the West, and no escape to the East, the evil tyrant Kadia sets her sights on the six kingdoms. Haven's neighbors are quick to fall under the swords of Kadia's shadow soldiers, leaving a sea of bodies and a clear path to Haven's only home. Haven must make a choice; take her people and flee to the foreign Republic across the sea or lead a last stand against a powerful dictator.
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My Musings :
I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review.
I love strong female protagonists and this book has it in spades. The story revolves around Haven who unexpectedly becomes the Queen of her people. The book is full of war tactics and politics but it's not too heavy to detract from the enjoyment.
Haven is a very strong heroine. She goes through so much physical and emotional pain inspite of which she is kind and protective of her people who are in turn protective of their Queen. This shows the loyalty of everyone. This is one of the themes wrapped up in the layers of the tale. There are so many thematic layers to the story that it was a great read! I was able to follow Haven's story of courage and strong will to do anything for her people's good.
The author has given a very strong character for Haven such that she can do no wrong in the eyes of the beholder. I loved her independence, her will-power and her gentle disposition. Her relationships with her guards-friends, Mira, Emeril and Corrin are all special and add complexity to her story. Because this is primarily Haven's story. Emeril and Corrin were given adequate attention but they felt lacking, as lacking with the supporting cast. Though the side characters were good at adding to the details of the story, they were blurred in their definitions. And I generally love to know more about the side characters.
The writing was very descriptive and the imagery was perfectly conveyed to the readers. The pace was very slow at the beginning but halfway through it picked up and stayed that way till the end. Though it was slow, the reading wasn't tedious at all. It helped to fill in the details of the world around Haven. The only regret was that the other kingdoms weren't highlighted much in the book. I hope the following books in the series would expand on them.
The romantic aspect was perfectly planned and I rooted for the wrong person at the beginning. This is a perfect example of appearances causing deception. As the story progressed I was able to see who makes for the better hero. The ending was kind of rushed in my opinion. But this has made me wonder about the sequel.
All in all, it was a very fast read inspite of slow pace with plenty of adventure and action. The fighting was invigorating and fun to read through. I look forward to the series and hope that the whole world and other kingdoms are given more time in the limelight.
My rating : 3.5/5
Meet the Author :
Katherine Bogle's debut young adult novel, Haven, came second in the World's Best Story contest 2015. She currently resides in Saint John, New Brunswick with her partner in crime, and plethora of cats.
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