Friday, October 28, 2011

Review: The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson

September 20, 2011
Greenwillow Books

Once a century, one person is chosen for greatness.

Elisa is the chosen one.

But she is also the younger of two princesses, the one who has never done anything remarkable. She can’t see how she ever will.

Now, on her sixteenth birthday, she has become the secret wife of a handsome and worldly king—a king whose country is in turmoil. A king who needs the chosen one, not a failure of a princess.

And he’s not the only one who needs her. Savage enemies seething with dark magic are hunting her. A daring, determined revolutionary thinks she could be his people’s savior. And he looks at her in a way that no man has ever looked at her before. Soon it is not just her life, but her very heart that is at stake.

Elisa could be everything to those who need her most. If the prophecy is fulfilled. If she finds the power deep within herself. If she doesn’t die young.

Most of the chosen do.

My Review:
THE GIRL OF FIRE AND THORNS is a brilliantly woven YA debut that I absolutely loved! Carson has developed a wonderfully unique world that is sure to enchant readers. The concept in the novel is so unique and fresh that it stands out from the typical YA novels. While I had a few minor complaints about it, I really enjoyed the novel overall!

Elisa is at first a weak and untried girl whose only "talent" is to stuff her face with as many sweets as she can. Her life changes dramatically when she is married off to Alejandro and taken to his kingdom. It is there that Elisa begins to grow into a strong girl and begins to learn how to care for the people. But the surprises don't end there for Elisa! Nope, her time as Alejandro's secret wife is only the beginning. It is when Elisa is kidnapped and taken to a place in dire need of her help that she truly flourishes.

While I do like the person who Elisa eventually ends up becoming, I did not care for her at all for the first half of the novel. I could not stand how she constantly complained about being so" fat" and "ugly". Then after she got done complaining, she would go eat some more and drown her sorrows in food. I am sorry, but if you are unhappy you should do something about it, not eat until you are way past full. Light a candle, don't curse the darkness.

Now that complaint may turn you off the book, but let me tell you, even though I got really irritated with her, the storyline makes up for Elisa's annoyances. I was absolutely fascinated by the lore in the novel and I soaked up all the information I could get. The whole concept of the Godstone was extremely interesting. I loved learning about what it meant to be the bearer of the Godstone alongside Elisa. While some of the information is confusing at first, as the novel goes on it all comes together and you actually get it! Also, it helps that Elisa wasn't a complainer for the whole book. She does get much better and she learns so much on her journey.

THE GIRL OF THORNS AND FIRE is a great YA debut that is sure to captivate readers. Don't miss out on this one!

My Review:


  1. I've read mixed reviews for this one, but I'm glad you enjoyed it overall, despite the complaining of the MC! I might just pick it up soon (I have an ARC of it). Great review, Bailey!

  2. Hmm, yeah, a whiny heroine would get annoying. And it's interesting that she becomes happy only after getting married...
    I'm still going to give this book a shot, because I love fantasy, and it seems Rae Carson's writing is fantastic. I'll just have to hang on until the 2nd half of the book! Thanks for the review, Bailey! :)

  3. "Then after she got done complaining, she would go eat some more and drown her sorrows in food. I am sorry, but if you are unhappy you should do something about it, not eat until you are way past full. Light a candle, don't curse the darkness."

    EXACTLY! That drove me crazy for the first half of the book, and then all of a sudden a switch got flipped and she started focusing her attention outward instead of inward and I could start rooting for her:) By the end I couldn't put this one down and I can't wait to see what happens next since Elisa grew so much throughout the story.

  4. You nailed it on the head. I didn't mind that she was "fat" (though I pictured her more as a very sturdy girl with baby fat rather than obese) but I hated that she complained about it all the time then chowed down. But she totally grew on me and, by the end, I didn't want this book to end.


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