Goodreads Summary: One day Han Alister catches three young wizard setting fire to the sacred mountain of Hanalea. Han takes an amulet away from Micah Bayar, son of the High Wizard, to ensure the boy won't use it against him. The amulet once belonged to the Demon King, who nearly destroyed the world a millennium ago. With a magical piece so powerful at stake, Han knows that the Bayars will stop at nothing to get it back.I loved the characters, both of them though I have to admit Raisa is my favorite. I felt like I could relate to her better of the two and she was just a fun character to read about. I loved how she was so desperate to be better than she was, to be better than those that came before her and how willing she was to do whatever it took to get there. She's truly a strong female lead, one who really can and will do it all and I loved her. And Han...in a lot of ways he has the same feel as Raisa, he's just not sure how to go about it or how to even find himself and I look forward to seeing how he brings all the various aspects of himself into one person...if that makes any sense.
Meanwhile, Princess Raisa ana'Marianna has her own battle to fight. She's just returned to court after three years of riding and hunting with her father's family. Raia aspires to be like Hanalea, the legendary warrior queen who killed the Demon King and saved the world. But it seems that her mother has other plans for her-plans that include a suitor who goes against everything the Queendom stands for.
The Seven Realms will tremble when the lives of Han and Raisa collide in this stunning page-turner from best-selling author Cinda Williams Chima.
I'm a huge fan of these fantasy novels that tell from alternating perspectives [in this case Han and Raisa] because I feel like it gives a wider outlook of the world and it just FASCINATES the heck out of me. And, of course, its made better by the fact that I thoroghly enjoy both characters. [Might have mentioned that before but it is seriously a point worth stressing because without having been interested by both of them I probably wouldn't have made it through...its one of those novels where the characters can make or break it, at least in my opinion.]
It's a little slow but since its the first book in a fantasy series and has a great deal to set up, I'll forgive it that minor flaw. It may not be fast-paced but the chapters are fascinating and help to not only set the tone of the novel, well more like the series, but to also introduce you to...and even go beyond introducing you to really giving you a feel for the cast of characters. Now that the scene has been set I'm eager to see how the series progresses because there is a whole lot going on and only brief hints given as to how it will all play out. Brilliant young adult fantasy series and one that I'd definitely recommend to adults as well.