*I received this book as an eARC from Scholastic Press on NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*
Author: Sara B. Larson
Publication Date: January 7, 2014
Synopsis: A lush and gorgeously written debut, packed with action, intrigue, and a thrilling love triangle.
Alexa Hollen is a fighter. Forced to disguise herself as a boy and serve in the king's army, Alex uses her quick wit and fierce sword-fighting skills to earn a spot on the elite prince's guard. But when a powerful sorcerer sneaks into the palace in the dead of night, even Alex, who is virtually unbeatable, can't prevent him from abducting her, her fellow guard and friend Rylan, and Prince Damian, taking them through the treacherous wilds of the jungle and deep into enemy territory.
The longer Alex is held captive with both Rylan and the prince, the more she realizes that she is not the only one who has been keeping dangerous secrets. And suddenly, after her own secret is revealed, Alex finds herself confronted with two men vying for her heart: the safe and steady Rylan, who has always cared for her, and the dark, intriguing Damian. With hidden foes lurking around every corner, is Alex strong enough to save herself and the kingdom she's sworn to protect?
Why?: I love high fantasy, and I love even more when I find a YA high fantasy novel. I have heard really good things about this book, so I'm pretty excited to read it.
Expectations: My expectations are fairly high for this book, since I've heard pretty good things about it. It's been promoted everywhere, and I think it has a lot to live up to because of that. It's also being placed in the same genre as books by Rae Carson, Leigh Bardugo, and the like, and that makes me think that it should be on par with The Girl of Fire and Thorns, Graceling, and Shadow and Bone. And I really want it to be. I do expect more romance from this book than the others though.
Judging a book by its cover: I actually really like this cover. I love the colors, and how the title is very prominent. I like the rose on top of the dagger (I think it's a dagger), and how everything just looks so good together. It doesn't give too much away, but it still looks like a high fantasy book. I think it would totally stand out from other books around it!