Release Date ~ January 22, 2013
RazOrbill ~ Penguin Canada
ARC received from Penguin Canada for review
A runaway slave with a shadowy past, sixteen-year-old Persephone has spent four long years toiling beneath the leering gaze of her despised owner and dreaming of a life where she is free to shape her own destiny. Then, one night, a chance encounter with a handsome chicken thief named Azriel changes her life forever.
Sold to him for a small bag of gold coins, Persephone soon discovers what she already suspected: namely, that Azriel is not what he seems. And when she realizes that he believes Persephone has a special destiny—she is determined to escape him and his impossibly broad shoulders.
But things are no longer as simple as they once were. Torn between her longing for freedom and her undeniable feelings for the handsome thief with the fast hands and the slow smile, Persephone faces the hardest choice she will ever have to make. And no one least of all her—could have imagined the shocking truth her decision will reveal.
You know what this book is? This book is a good old-fashioned adventure story in all its glory. Fans of Tamora Pierce and Kristin Cashore will love The Gypsy King! (I say that as a fan of both of those authors.) I want there to be high stakes, sinister villainy, swoon-worthy romance, tongue-in-cheek humour, and a pinch of magic added in my books. Check and mate to The Gypsy King for having it all for me. :)
So it's pretty clear that The Gypsy King is a great new read for seasoned fans of fantasy books, but for those of you who aren't quite as well-acquainted or are a little iffy when it comes to this genre I think this is a book that you should give a chance. It's a little bit lighter on the fantasy, and the writing and story is strong enough to hold your interest. Trust me on this one!
- Wit & excitement from the first page:
The first chapter of The Gypsy King pretty much sets the tone and gives you a glimpse of what the rest of the book will be like - Persephone perpetually finds herself in trouble of one kind or another, and is never willing to back down. And once in a while, that actually works out VERY well for her. I love a book that instantly hooks me, and the first chapter did just that and only increased as the story moved along.
- Characters (and an author) with a great sense of humour:
I always enjoy reading books when the author writes in a few humorous scenes or includes a clever character to make those jokes. That's exactly why I loved reading the banter between Persephone and Azriel, and I have to say that their relationship kind of reminded me of George and Alana from The Lioness Quartet by Tamora Pierce (which, if you haven't read it, is a GOOD thing and you should make sure to read that series as well)!
- Strong character relationships:
I loved the diversity in characters we're introduced to in The Gypsy King (including animals), and how they interacted with each another. Strong friendships are a huge plus for me when reading, and I particularly enjoyed the relationship between Persephone and Azriel and her furry friends because of this!
But The Gypsy King felt like the YA fantasy I used to read years ago, as a younger teen, and I loved that! As much as I appreciate darker fantasy books, fun ones like this book are so enjoyable and Maureen has such a fantastic sense of humour that really comes across well in her writing. And there are some darker aspects to it, that I think are going to be more important in the next books of this series. The Gypsy King is a new favourite of mine and exactly what I've been missing in YA lately.