Friday, October 12, 2012

The Gray Wolf Throne by Cinda Williams Chima

Release Date: Out now!

Publisher: Hyperion Books

Pages: 517pgs

The Story

Han Alister thought he had already lost everyone he loved. But when he finds his friend Rebecca Morley near death in the Spirit Mountains, Han knows that nothing matters more than saving her. The costs of his efforts are steep, but nothing can prepare him for what he soon discovers: the beautiful, mysterious girl he knew as Rebecca is none other than Raisa ana'Marianna, heir to the Queendom of the Fells. Han is hurt and betrayed. He knows he has no future with a blueblood. And, as far as he's concerned, the princess's family killed his own mother and sister. But if Han is to fulfill his end of an old bargain, he must do everything in his power to see Raisa crowned queen.

Meanwhile, some people will stop at nothing to prevent Raisa from ascending. With each attempt on her life, she wonders how long it will be before her enemies succeed. Her heart tells her that the thief-turned-wizard Han Alister can be trusted. She wants to believe it - he's saved her life more than once. But with danger coming at her from every direction, Raisa can only rely on her wits and her iron-hard will to survive - and even that might not be enough.

The Gray Wolf Throne is an epic tale of fierce loyalty, unbearable sacrifice, and the heartless hand of fate.

The Review

Honestly where do I start with this book review? Okay so I'm going to admit here I'm a huge fangal when it comes to the Seven Realm series and it's by far one of my favourite fantasy series EVER! It might have actually beaten my love for the Game of Thrones series which only goes to show what a brilliant author Cinda Williams Chima actually is! I mean seriously, with each and every installment getting better and better as the series goes along, and with so much story progression happening not to mention fantastic character development waiting in tow, what more could you possibly want from a book series such as this one? Right . . . nothing more because this series is beyond awesomeness . . . it's absolute perfection.

THE GRAY WOLF THRONE, the third installment of the Seven Realm series, continues the stories of daring wizards, political intrigue, family feuds, forbidden romances and strong male heroes and their unpredictable female heroine leads. With Princess Raisa ana'Marianna forced to flee her home in the Fells in order to escape a forced marriage by none other than a son from the Bayar wizard bloodline, from ultimate betrayals to unforeseeable trickery, Raisa has managed to survive as long as possible along with Amon, her friend and main protector. But just when she finds herself safe in Oden's Ford, flaunting and hiding behind the facade of a servant girl and tutor named Rebecca Morley, she's soon discovered by the Bayar's and makes a deadly bargain of continuing - as planned - to marry Micah Bayar (the boy she fled from the Fells) to keep herself and many others safe from harm. So as she travels with Micah, there is a sudden attack and it leaves Raisa to make her quick escape only to be left fatally wounded in the end. But with another wizard and a former friend of 'Rebecca Morley', Han "Cuffs" Allister, someone who is hot on Raisa's trail (only he doesn't know of her real identity) and whom is eager to find her, when he eventually finds Raisa/Rebecca he not only saves her life using magic and nearly killing himself in the process, but he discovers who Raisa/Rebecca actually is which leaves him feeling utterly betrayed and angry . . . even though he can't help but stay to protect Raisa - whether she's a princess or not.

Out of all the installments I've read, THE GRAY WOLF THRONE is by far my favourite book in the entire series. At least right now, considering we have one more book to go! Raising the stakes higher then ever before, we not only have more scenes shared between Han and Raisa (I know finally!) but we also have far more action scenes than we've seen previously in the books, which only causes me to jump up and down in excitement because it was ALL so AWESOME from beginning to end! So freaking  awesome indeed. I mean there's so much love I have for Chima's beautiful writing and the world she has somehow created effortlessly . . . I'm beyond speechless right now with just how magnificent this book series really is! Like I said before: There's so much love here between me and this book!

But it's not only the storyline that keeps getting better and better, it's also the characters too. Oh boy oh boy, how I love these characters as well! With readers suggesting they like Han more than Raisa or liking Raisa more than Han, it's fair to say I adore them both equally as our main characters for many reasons. The thing is, they're both very different characters - personality-wise at least - to one another and whether you love or hate them, or whether you agree or come to disagree with their gut instincts and some actions in decision-making, they are just two very complexed characters that bring many sides to the story and I'm proud of the author herself in the way she continues to make them grow and be at their best and at their worse as well, which increases my love for them in every step of their journey.

For Raisa in particular, she's not exactly a favorable character from what I've read in past reviews, but to me I adore her completely. She's not perfect but who can blame her? After all, she's still a young girl trying to figure out her life and her future, in which this book she finally comes to grips with so I'm glad for that. Faced with many impossible routes, in terms of ruling as a future queen and loving those she cannot love as it's forbidden (my poor Raisa and Amon - how I love those two together), Raisa has such a strong role to play and I think in this book she has grown up and it's amazing seeing a character I've loved for a short while become someone so fierce and so powerful at the same time too. For the most part I just love her more for her own strengths and her courage.

As for Han Allister, he's a character that is a force to be reckoned with and he's one main character whom continues to blow me away in every book! Much like in Raisa's situation, Han has many difficult choices to make but he remains strong throughout the entire book, even when he's always feeling angry and betrayed by Raisa's dark 'hidden identity  secret. But here's the thing I love most about our dear "Cuffs": He maybe tough on the inside and out, but he's always playing everything as a game, one where each and every step he makes . . . he's always watching what's going on around him and he's always on the lookout to who maybe watching. But that's not all I love about him. I love how he's with Raisa. He has always knew her as Rebecca Morley - someone he could possibly share a life with - but since she's a princess and her secret is out now . . . he's still trying to keep his distance. But when they're together, no matter the awkwardness and betrayal lying between them, there's this spark that no one can deny between them and boy . . . my heart is swooning right now. Gah! They're just so cute together and yet so wrong for each other which only makes them even more perfect for one another if you get my meaning. Yes, I heart them so much if you can't tell already!

Overall, THE GRAY WOLF THRONE was one of the most critical points within the series and it's by far the perfect book to help me gear up in excitement and utter despair for the final book coming out this month, The Crimson Crown! With many struggles of political power, assassination attempts on princesses and forbidden love to tear your own heart apart, this book sets up a wonderful fantasy series and it won't be the last I read of Chima's . . . she is such a sublime author who needs more praises than others are willing to give her! Just love her writing so, so much!

The Rating

5/5 stars

12 comments:

  1. great review.

    i desperately need to get this series(and even game of throne now that i think of it)

    Le' Grande Codex

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    1. Thanks! Be sure to get them soon! :)

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  2. Awesome review, Erin!! I still remember your review of the previous book and boy, did that really excite me. I haven't read the first book yet though I really really want to, like, right now but alas! real life is getting way ahead of me and I need to catch up. :(

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    1. Thank you! Don't worry I need to catch up with a lot of other book series too but this one is a must for the top of the list! :)

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  3. "They're just so cute together and yet so wrong for each other which only makes them even more perfect for one another..." Great comment. It makes me want to read the book! Love the cover, the title, and a love a flawed main character. Thanks for a sharing a little about this book!

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    1. Thank you and not a problem! This series has everything you need in a book.

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  4. I have yet to read any of this authors works. But heard amazing things.

    Fab review!!!

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    1. I haven't read the author's other series but this one . . . it's definitely NOT the last I'll read of hers. Thanks!

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  5. I know how much you love this series. I've heard such great things about it! I'm glad to hear this instalment didn't disappoint. Great review as always, darling! :)

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    1. You can tell right? Haha. Thanks Sam!

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  6. I don't think I've heard much about this series but if you like it more than GoT I might just have to check it out!

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