Saturday, December 18, 2010
Is it just me or does it seem like a lot of book heroines lately have names that can be shortened to Kat? So far this year I've come across three: Katarina Bishop from The Heist Society, Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games, and now Katsa from Graceling. Pretty crazy!
Anyway I picked up this book because I've heard so many good things about it since I've entered the blogosphere. No idea why I hadn't heard about it before but better late than never right? Just as a warning this review does contain spoilers!
I had no trouble getting sucked into this book. Katsa may not be your stereotypical heroine but she was still very relatable. Her transformation from a willing pawn, to a girl who wants to live life on her own terms was brilliantly done. I think that the character development was definitely the strongest aspect of Graceling.
I don't think that the plot was the greatest. It was pretty much your run of the mill overthrow the bad guy win back the kingdom kind of story. Thats not a bad thing, but there are just so many other books with similar plot outlines. This was definitely more of a character driven novel, as compared to a plot driven novel.
My favorite character in Graceling would probably have to be Bitterblue. She was wise beyond her years and I loved that she had such an inner strength. I especially liked how her and Katsa ended up developing a sort of student/mentor relationship.
I have one really strong misgiving about this book. Katsa and Po's relationship. Now I know that people just love Katsa and Po together and at first I agreed. Po brought out the best in Katsa and he really helped her realize a lot of truths about herself. But then we got about halfway through the book and their relationship changed from slightly romantic inklings to full on lovers. Which was just really, really, awkward in my opinion. I mean I get that Katsa has issues with letting go of her freedom after being manipulated her whole life but seriously? The only way to reconcile that with their relationship was to have them become lovers?!?!?! That just bugged me and it just seemed really weird. I hoped that by the end of the novel Katsa would finally realize that marrying Po was a good thing but no. They just remained lovers..... ehhhh. That was the one big problem I had with this book.
Overall I thought that Graceling was an okay book. It had good character development, which I really enjoyed, but the storyline was sort of generic. And then there was that whole awkward lovers aspect which totally threw me for a loop. I give Graceling 3 and a half stars out of 5.