Graceling by Kristin Cashore

(6.0/10)

I haven’t had much experience with “Young Adult Literature,” as I was one of those kids who skipped over that genre because it was for “kids.” However I was recently sent Graceling by Kristin Cashore, and spent two lazy afternoons this past weekend reading what turned out to be a really enjoyable book.

The basic premise is that the universe is populated by those with Graces; they can be for cooking, predicting the weather, or in the case of our lead character, killing. It makes for an interesting base for Cashore’s story, and allows the several unexpected turn of events believable.

Katsa, our lead, has the unfortunate joy of being related to the king of Middluns (the countries that make up the world are Nander (north), Wester (west), Estill (east), Middluns (in the center, Sunder (south), Monsea and Lienid). Believing he has control over her, she allows him to use her as his thug, going out and killing, maiming, or scaring those who have wronged the king.

However at some point in her history she rebels. Not entirely, but enough to create the Council, a group of people – influential and not so – from all over the countries, who save those they can from the kings.

One such mission, however, brings an unexpected encounter, and an unexplained mystery. From here, Katsa’s world gets turned upside down and she is forced to make decisions, run, hide, and do the responsible thing, ignoring her heart.

It really is a wonderful story, and I would definitely recommend this to any teenagers that I know.

That being said, it would not be the first book I would recommend. I believe that teenagers – or anyone, for that matter – should read above their level. It helps them learn new things, learn new words, and be challenged by what they are reading. Cashore ignores this opportunity, and more often than not chooses the easy route for her readers.

Predictability is this books watch-word, and simplistic characters and decisions make for some quick reading at times. It’s not such that it diminishes the accomplishment of Cashore’s debut novel, but it is to the detriment of the book.

Graceling is definitely a good read, especially for anyone looking for a quick read, or a present for that teenager in their life (boy or girl). It isn’t anything to write home about, but not something to snub either.

Review by

3 positive reader review(s) for Graceling

All reviews for Kristin Cashore's Seven Kingdoms Trilogy series


Graceling
Seven Kingdoms Trilogy: Book 1
6.0

In a world where people born with an exceptional skill, known as a Grace, are feared and exploited, Katsa carries the burden of a skill even she despises: the Grace of kill [...]


Fire
Seven Kingdoms Trilogy: Book 1
7.5

It is not a peaceful time in the Dells. The young King Nash clings to his throne while rebel lords in the north and south build armies to unseat him. The mountains and fore [...]


Bitterblue
Seven Kingdoms Trilogy: Book 3
8.5

Eight years after Graceling, Bitterblue is now queen of Monsea. But the influence of her father, a violent psychopath with mind-altering abilities, lives on. Her advisors, [...]

12+

Graceling reader reviews

from Canada

The book Graceling is well written but second and third novels start to let the first down. The last book in trilogy has enough tears to float a navy and only brings home the fact that Bitterblue is not strong enough to ever run a kingdom, she is beset with indecision and poor judgement.

from Taiwan

I love the book because of the plot and the characters. Both are dynamic, exciting and fascinating and it is very interesting to see how protagonist change and evolve throughout the story. What attracted me the most is when I was reading about the interactions between Po and Kasta. It is a book that I've read and reread for at least five times, and even now I still want to go all over again.

from From

Wonderfully captivating, if a bit heavy on the romance.

from Chicago

I wanted to put in a quick word for Graceling, since I enjoyed it so much. It was a dynamic read, and very exciting- It actually got my heart pumping a few times with the fight scenes! It had all the things I like in a story, strong female lead, interesting premise and plot, and a little bit of romance. It is definitely a book I would buy to read over again.

7.6/10 from 5 reviews

Write a reader review

Your rating out of 10

Books you may also enjoy

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms

by NK Jemisin

Yeine Darr is an outcast from the barbarian north. But when her mother dies under mysterious circumstances, she is summoned to the majestic city of Sky - a palace above the [...]

Series: The Inheritance Trilogy: Book 1
Published: 2010

Score: 106

Our rating: 10.0 | 6 positive reader reviews

15+

The Hero of Ages

by Brandon Sanderson

Tricked into releasing the evil spirit Ruin while attempting to close the Well of Ascension, new emperor Elend Venture and his wife, the assassin Vin, are now hard-pressed [...]

Series: Mistborn: Book 3
Published: 2008

Score: 109

Our rating: 10.0 | 9 positive reader reviews

12+

The Raven Tower

by Ann Leckie

For centuries the kingdom of Iraden has been protected by a god known as the Raven. But in their hour of need, the Raven speaks nothing to its people. It is into this unres [...]

Series: NA
Published: 2019

Score: 102

Our rating: 10.0 | 2 positive reader reviews

15+

Nevernight

by Jay Kristoff

Nevernight is the first in an epic new fantasy series from the New York Times bestselling author, Jay Kristoff.In a land where three suns almost never [...]

Series: The Nevernight Chronicle #1
Published: 2016

Score: 100

Our rating: 10.0 | 0 positive reader reviews

15+

Touch of Iron

by Timandra Whitecastle

Is the Living Blade real or just a legend? With it... Prince Bashan could win back his kingdom. Master Telen Diaz can free himself of the burden from his past. Owen Smith s [...]

Series: The Living Blade: Book 1
Published: 2016

Score: 100

Our rating: 10.0 | 0 positive reader reviews

15+

A Storm of Swords 1: Steel and Snow

by George RR Martin

Blood runs truer than oaths. The Seven Kingdoms are divided by revolt and blood feud as winter approaches like an angry beast. In the northern wastes a horde of hungry, sav [...]

Series: A Song of Ice and Fire: Book 3
Published: 2000

Score: 104

Our rating: 9.9 | 5 positive reader reviews

15+

Legend

by David Gemmell

Druss, Captain of the Axe, whose fame was legendary, had chosen to wait for death in a mountain hideaway. But mighty Dros Delnoch, the last stronghold of the Drenai Empire, [...]

Series: The Drenai Novels: Book 1
Published: 1984

Score: 107

Our rating: 9.8 | 9 positive reader reviews

15+

The Priory of the Orange Tree

by Samantha Shannon

A world divided.A queendom without an heir.An ancient enemy awakens.The House of Berethnet has ruled Inys for a thousand years. Still unwed, Queen S [...]

Series: NA
Published: 2019

Score: 99

Our rating: 9.8 | 1 positive reader reviews

12+

Half a King

by Joe Abercrombie

Prince Yarvi has vowed to regain a throne he never wanted. But first he must survive cruelty, chains and the bitter waters of the Shattered Sea itself. And he must do it al [...]

Series: Shattered Sea #1
Published: 2014

Score: 102

Our rating: 9.7 | 5 positive reader reviews

12+