|Winterkeep (Graceling Realm book)|
Author: Cashore, Kristin
Queen Bitterblue of Monsea must head to the nation of Winterkeep after her envoys drown in suspicious circumstances, and somewhere there, Lovisa Cavenda waits and watches while tragedy with devastating political and personal ramification strikes.
Kirkus Reviews (11/15/20)
School Library Journal (01/15/21)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (00/02/21)
The Hornbook (+) (00/03/21)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 01/15/2021 Gr 9 Up—Set five years after Bitterblue, this novel leaves the familiar Seven Kingdoms of the early books and switches settings to the treacherous world of Winterkeep. The narrative is told from five points of view, some familiar, some new: Bitterblue, the reigning monarch of Monsea; Giddon, a disinherited lord first seen in Graceling; Lovisa Cavenda, the eldest daughter of Keepish politicians; Adventure, a telepathic blue fox; and a mysterious sea creature whose peace at the bottom of the ocean is violently disturbed. The story starts with a bang as something explodes underwater, killing many telepathic creatures who live there. Bitterblue falls overboard on her way to Winterkeep and is assumed dead. Giddon tries to discover the roots of the conspiracy tying their supposed allies to Monsea's enemies. Lovisa realizes her parents are lying more than usual and hiding something in the attic. Adventure tries to keep his bonded human, Lovisa's mother, from hurting people. Cashore weaves these five plots into an intricate tapestry full of high stakes, deft humor, and characters readers will root to join forces. The cast is racially diverse: Keepish are brown-skinned, Bitterblue has light-brown coloring, and Monseans are white. Lovisa is bisexual, and her narrative has a coming-of-age feel as she explores her sexuality and begins to see her parents for who they really are. VERDICT This long-awaited addition to the series exceeds expectations—with the action of Graceling, the political theater of Fire, and characters from Bitterblue, this title has something to offer all Cashore fans.—Emmy Neal, Lake Forest Lib., IL - Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 01/01/2021 In the fourth volume of the Graceling Realm series, Queen Bitterblue decides to travel to the educationally and technologically more advanced country of Winterkeep, where two of her diplomats have mysteriously vanished. Often sick during the long voyage, Bitterblue disappears not long before their arrival. Her companions are stunned but determined to carry on. Meanwhile, 16-year-old Lovisa, whose parents support different warring factions within Winterkeep’s parliament, is a boarding student at Winterkeep Academy. Returning home frequently to protect her young brothers from their vindictive parents, she stumbles upon a dangerous secret and decides to take action, ultimately risking more than she had imagined. Fantasy elements include an enormous sea creature, sentient foxes that can bond with people, and seal-like beings that communicate telepathically with humans. While the novel will please fans by following characters familiar from previous books, particularly Bitterblue (2012), Lovisa soon moves to center stage in a sometimes wrenching, increasingly absorbing coming-of-age story. Readers who admire Cashore’s ability to create original settings, complex characters, and engaging narratives will find plenty to enjoy here.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: It's been almost a decade since Cashore released a novel in her blockbuster Graceling series; fans of the Graceling Realm are already lining up for this. - Copyright 2021 Booklist.