Author: Kristin Cashore
Genre: Young Adult fantasy
Publisher: Dial Press
Publication date: May 1st, 2012
For those of you who aren't familiar with Kristin Cashore: stop reading. Right now. Well, stop reading this and go buy Graceling. Come back when you've finished it and Fire.
There are some books that I don't want to review because my grasp of language doesn't seem adequate. After reading a book like Bitterblue, in which every sentence is constructed so beautifully, I don't feel like I can do the story justice. But I'll try.
I went into Bitterblue with some anxiety: what if Katsa and Po weren't in it enough? What if they'd broken up, or gotten married, or some other unexpected turn of events? What if Bitterblue turned evil in the eight years since we saw her last? Or, perhaps worse, what if she was an implausibly perfect queen after everything that had happened?
Once I started reading, though, my anxieties didn't matter because I remembered how much I trust Kristin Cashore to deliver exactly the story I want to read. I was transported. I wish I was still in Monsea right now.
I won't post any spoilers, but know that fans of Kristin Cashore won't be disappointed. Her prose is still lyrical, lush, and sad. You will laugh out loud (more so than in the previous volumes) and you will probably also cry. You will shake your head and wonder why you thought that, maybe, this time the heroine would get a normal romance. You will fall in love with a grumpy librarian and his mangy, grouchy cat. You will want to start reading it again as soon as you finish.