*Warning: A couple of spoilers have been blacked out for your safety*
Thank you to Random House Children's for the ARC through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review!
"For a split second I wonder what I am doing here on this battlefield, on the front line. I am a princess... For the first time ever, I feel like I am living the life I was meant to be living all along."
Okay, just for a second, let's forget that fact that it's incredibly fast paced and takes place within, what appears to be, less than a week. Also, forget that, while it WASN'T a case of insta-love between Golmarr and Sorrowlyn, it was certainly close. But, it can be somewhat understood (sort of a stretch) considering all they went through within that short amount of time.
Instead, let's focus on the amazing messages this story is sending to it's readers. First, I found the inner commentary highly entertaining. Also, knowledge being the dragon's treasure instead of gold and jewels? Brilliant! I loved the way it admittedly called out the existing cliches within the story and often went as far as to challenge them! The feminist themes in the book spoke to my advocacy for girl power, in the way that Sorrow goes from a sheltered, helpless girl that has pretty much had her kingdom's ideals for women to be soft, submissive, and meek beaten into her (literally) to learning that she can be anything she wants to be, even a warrior. She realizes that a princess doesn't always need a white knight to ride to her rescue, she can slay the dragon herself! She can be anything and everything, but the question is: is Sorrowlyn ready to pay The Dragon's Price?
My only concerns were that sometimes things weren't addressed when they should have been, or just didn't get the focus they deserved, like when Sorrow found out that Ornald was her father. She didn't even discuss that fact (out loud or in her inner dialogue) until much later and even when she did talk about it, she didn't really discuss her own reaction or show much emotion on the subject, which took away a certain element of relation or emotion between readers and the character. Also, it seemed like the entire length of the book (minus the epilogue) took place within less than a week. I think spacing it out more or at least expanding on certain ideas/feelings would not only make it feel longer and more rich, but would also give readers the opportunity to immerse themselves in the story.
Still, it really was a great story and I can't wait to find out what happens next! I hope it comes out soon!