Friday, September 26, 2014

Review: The Kingdom of Little Wounds

The Kingdom of Little Wounds was my very first Medieval book. I was excited to start it because I honestly had no idea what to expect from it.This novel has received a lot of ridicule for not  being suitable for YA readers, but, as an 18 year old -- 17 when I read this -- I thought this book was like a breath of fresh air.

On the eve of Princess Sophia’s wedding, the Scandinavian city of Skyggehavn prepares to fete the occasion with a sumptuous display of riches: brocade and satin and jewels, feasts of sugar fruit and sweet spiced wine. Yet beneath the veneer of celebration, a shiver of darkness creeps through the palace halls. A mysterious illness plagues the royal family, threatening the lives of the throne’s heirs, and a courtier’s wolfish hunger for the king’s favors sets a devious plot in motion. Here in the palace at Skyggehavn, things are seldom as they seem — and when a single errant prick of a needle sets off a series of events that will alter the course of history, the fates of seamstress Ava Bingen and mute nursemaid Midi Sorte become irrevocably intertwined with that of mad Queen Isabel. As they navigate a tangled web of palace intrigue, power-lust, and deception, Ava and Midi must carve out their own survival any way they can.

Summary: This book is told from mainly two perspectives; Ava Bingen, and Midi Sorte, but there is also 2nd person dialogue so you can read about all the mysterious and questionable things happening inside this one castle. The Kingdom is in distress as one of their beloved princesses dies the night of her wedding. No one is truly certain of how she dies, but the grieving cannot last very long, for there are far too many other dramatic things happening. 

PROS: This book is thick, about 600 hundred pages, so you know that there is no missing detail. The way Cokal phrases, and describes things is beautiful. I called this book a breath of fresh air because it contains something that many books are missing; reality. There has been a lot of negative feedback about how graphic this book is, but there is nothing in here that wouldn't have happened in Medieval times. Sad to say, but there was: poverty, disease, cruel punishment, and sexual abuse in this time period. 

CONS: I do have to admit that this book doesn't belong in the hands of anyone under the age of 16, simply because all the facts about this time period can be hard to swallow. I also had trouble getting through the entire thing since it was so big, but I can say that I finished it and was very happy with the ending. 

Rate: This book is different from most books in the YA category, and I definitely thought it deserved the Michael L. Printz award that it won. 5 out of 5 books (because books are better than stars).

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