The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Reading this felt a little like reading an altered version of Rae Carson's "Fire and Thorns" trilogy. Instead of a living jewel there is a twinned jewel that somehow is activated by Kelsea. Who, by the way, was raised in ignorance of all things royal and yet is expected to, on her 19th birthday, ascend the throne. She's an enlightened ruler, of course, and the people love her. Especially the part about her breaking the treaty with the neighboring Red Queen, which is the part that will create problems in upcoming volumes.
That there's nothing truly surprising or original here doesn't mean that this isn't still a good read, especially for those who love this type of plot. I'd be even happier with this if the next book explores Mortmense, or what drove the people of this place to leave what appears to be a modern civilization and start over without technology and books.
ARC provided by publisher.