Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Stolen Songbird


Stolen Songbird
Rating: 4/5
Buy or Borrow: Buy
Source: ARC Courtesy of NetGalley

Forsaken Mountain. For five centuries a witch's curse has bound the trolls to their city beneath the mountain. Plenty of time for the trolls and their magic to fade from the memories of humans, and lodge them firmly in myth and legend. But there was a prophecy, a prophecy that speaks of a union that can lift the curse and set the trolls free.

Enter Cecile de Troyes, she is kidnapped by her friend, and taken beneath the mountain where she is sold to the trolls. As if the shock of finding out the myth of the trolls isn't a myth, and there's so much more to it, she also finds out that the King is the one who bought her, to marry his son Tristan. *whispers* the prophecy oooohh. Cecile has no intention of staying in Trollus. Her first order of business is escaping, but the pesky issue of the bonding ceremony between her and her new husband Tristan, and the fact that they can feel each other's emotions, throws a bit of a spanner in the works. Then there's the fact the trolls are clever, fast, inhumanly strong and pack some magic. Biding her time it is.

But while biding her time and waiting for the perfect opportunity to escape, something unexpected happens. The enigmatic (aka rude) troll prince begins to capture her heart. She begins to make friends, friends that she can't bear to leave behind. As the treachery mounts, and the King shows his nasty side, Cecile begins to see that she's the half-bloods only hope, the slaves who are part human, part troll. The rebellion is brewing. Prince Tristan, her husband, is the secret leader. Cecile goes from being a farmer girl to being a Princess, a witch, the hope of the people and is swiftly entangled in an intricate political web.

*KLAXON* NO LOVE TRIANGLE. NO INSTA LOVE. I REPEAT. NO LOVE TRIANGLE. NO INSTA LOVE.

This is an honest to God YA book with no insta love, and no love triangle. I do love a good love triangle don't get me wrong, but it's so rare and refreshing for me to find one without a love triangle and the whole "oh I want her with him" thing going on. Don't even get me started on insta love.

We also have another unique addition to the YA genre. I cannot tell you how bored I am of vampires, even werewolves and fey at this stage. They're everywhere. They're always the same. Stolen Songbird gives us another unique premise, world and mythology.

In Stolen Songbird we get introduced to the rich mythology of the trolls, amid a rich and complex plot. I haven't read a YA book about trolls  before, I was super intrigued, and I wasn't disappointed. I enjoyed delving in to a new, never before covered (at least by me) creature. Before you see the word troll and go "EW SHE CAN'T MARRY A TROLL BLAH BLAH BLAH" don't worry. Jensen made him hot for all of you.

The characters in the story where all written extremely well. They had depth and complexity to them. Prince Tristan in particular is presented as a rude, ruthless kinda douchey prince, but he's maintaining an act, and has an entirely different side to him. Cecile starts off as an ordinary girl, she's strong willed, determined, she makes mistakes but never the same one twice. I love a character who can freely admit they screwed up, and they're not perfect, and that's Cecile all over. She's alone, it's interesting seeing how she gets treated in a place where she is pretty much reviled because she's not a troll, but she never lets it break her. She's strong.

Let's hear it for the fact the female characters are written as brave, and there's no debasement. I fell in love with Marc, please please please Danielle give him someone to love him! PLEASE!

As I said, no insta love WOOHOO. Hatred, to mistrust, to alliance, to friendship, to love (after alot of faffing). I love getting to see the relationship develop and watching as the characters get to know each other, and the romance was written to perfection.

The plot as I previously said was rich and complex. We think we're getting one thing, but then amid the romance and the kidnapping there's a rebellion brewing, a King who could do with some anger management, some dodgy family business and plenty of backstabbing and betrayal. I never saw any of the plot twists coming, I was glued to the book for the most part. The plot had a lot of elements that where all brought together to create the plot, and you really don't expect it.

My only problem with the book is the beginning. I don't know how to describe it. I just kind of started reading and was like "here we go again", the beginning for me would have put me off if this wasn't a review book, which would have been a shame because I really enjoyed it.I also felt it dragged a bit in places and was a tad longer than it really needed it to be.

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