Book Review: Graceling (Graceling Realm #1), by Kristin Cashore
Genre: YA Fantasy
Number Of Pages: 471 pages
Synopsis: Katsa has been able to kill a man with her bare hands since she was eight - she's a Graceling, one of the rare people in her land born with an extreme skill. As niece of the king, she should be able to live a life of privilege, but Graced as she is with killing, she is forced to work as the king's thug.
When she first meets Prince Po, Graced with combat skills, Katsa has no hint of how her life is about to change.
She never expects to become Po's friend.
She never expects to learn a new truth about her own Grace - or about a terrible secret that lies hidden far away...
★★★★★ and a ♥
....For continuing to be an empowering novel for girls
I love this book. It isn't the best written story ever, and there are parts of it where you feel like it could go just a little bit faster, but the female protagonist completely makes up for anything that's lacking.We see this everywhere nowadays: movies/books with strong female lead. Sometimes, it makes sense to say that the female character is a strong character. Other times, we're left wondering "what strong female character?" For me, any female protagonist who doesn't need a guy in any way is a strong character. Stieg Larsson's Millennium trilogy has Lisbeth Salander. Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games trilogy has Katniss Everdeen.
And now Graceling has Katsa of the Middluns.
Katsa doesn't need a guy to help her. At all. No one can beat her in a fight, and there is nothing out there that she can't do. She does have one weakness, of course, but she is able to overcome that weakness on her own, without a guy's help. The male character, Po, isn't really there because she absolutely needs him; he's there more as an emotional element to the story than anything else.
I really appreciate stories where one can truly say there's a strong female protagonist, and that's why this book will continue to be a favorite of mine for a good long time. The writing is simple, the plot tends to drag in places, but Katsa turns out to be worth every minute of it! Highly recommended for anyone who likes to read stories with "a strong female lead".