WOW! This book blew me away. The story of Kelsea, hidden heir to the Tearling throne-if she can survive all the assassins long enough to ascend the throne. Great storytelling, the plot moves right along with tons of world building details. Apparently this is some sort of dystopian/future/alternate reality of our current world. Johansen put in quite a few nifty little details that bring the history of the Tear world to vivid life.
The characters are fully developed and lots of nice twists on stock characters. The back story is fascinating as we see how this world began and why the people are now in this mess! Kelsea is a wonderful, strong heroine that isn’t your usual pretty girl queen. FINALLY, a plain girl gets to do all the fun stuff like be smart, have magic and fight for herself. Kelsea is very cool!! The basic plot is she gathers together her loyal? followers and tries to save her kingdom from all the dumb decisions and agreements made by her mother, the previous Queen and uncle, the Prince Regent.
Some magic/psychic things go on and there is a dark, dark, dark Red Queen that is so evil I had to read some of her scenes twice just to take it all in! A few cuss words, a little sex, the usual violence-swords etc; and children in danger, but not too bad and it all actually makes sense within the context of the story so no worries there but definitely NOT for the under 13 crowd. If they can handle Hunger Games they should be fine.
I had this ebook from the library and forgot about it-when they emailed me to say it would expire the next day I thought what the heck, everybody is talking about how good it is so I’ll give it a try and if I like it, I’ll renew and keep reading. Six hours later, I finished the book! I was enthralled and could not put it down. This is the first of a trilogy so I am waiting very impatiently for book two. 5 stars.