Thursday, May 31, 2012

Froi of the Exiles

The Lumatere Chronicles #2
By Marlena Marchetta
593 pages
ARC copy

It is three years after the Curse on Lumatere was lifted, and while the kingdom is healing, life is far from easy.  Many parts of the land remain barren, the citizens still distrust each other, and the threat from neighboring kingdom Charyn is becoming more serious by the day.  Froi has come no closer to knowing his past, but he is ok with that.  He is working the land, training to be a soldier, and still completely devoted to Finnikin and Queen Isaboe.  It is that devotion that prompts him to take on a dangerous quest into Charyn to assassinate their king and remove the threat to Lumatere.  But things do not go as planned in Charyn as Froi learns of Charyn's own horrifying curse, meets strange characters whose motives are questionable, and most importantly the insane Princess Quintana.  The 'Reginita' is foretold to break the curse and save Charyn, but sees that as her only worth in life.  The way she has to attempt to break the curse has done nothing for her self esteem.  As Froi finds himself embroiled in the situation in Charyn, he is faced with feelings he didn't know he was capable of, fearful that his work in the country is a betrayal to his Finnikin and Isaboe, and begins to unravel his own strange past.

I liked this much more than I thought I would.  Froi was not my favorite character in book one, and I didn't think I would connect with him in the same way I connected with Finnikin, but I did.  I was drawn in to the mystery of Charyn and of Froi.  I was also pleased to see that we don't leave Lumatere behind, Marchetta keeps us updated on what is happening there as well as in Charyn.  I did feel this was a little long, there were some sections that seemed to drag and I could have done without, but all in all, I enjoyed it.

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