Sunday, August 14, 2016

My take on: The Star-Touched Queen

One of my reading goals for the new year was to broaden my horizons. When it comes to sci-fi/fantasy books, I can be a bit of a book snob. I vowed to change that. More and more I'm saying "yes" to books outside of my comfort zone.

I said yes to The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi. A young girl is cursed. She's cursed with a horoscope that predicts only death. With a little bit of Indian folklore and mythology mixed in, this book caught my attention.

Maya is the outcast in her father's kingdom in Bharata. The harem wives shun her. Only her sister Gauri speaks to Maya with any affection. Gauri hangs on Maya's every word. Which makes it all the more painful when Maya must leave Bharata. She has to leave to save her family. She has to leave to save herself. She has to leave with a man, Amar. A man who wants to be her husband, and Maya to be his queen. Together they will rule a distant land. Doing so will save not just Maya's life, but the lives of her family and the people of Bharata.

The premise was certainly interesting. At times, the writing is very poetic. Animals talk. The animals that talk also want to eat humans. Mirrors hold the clues to the otherworld. Jewels can be plucked from trees. Time passes in greater stretches in Maya's new kingdom than in Bharata. Pulling a single thread from a tapestry in one direction or the other could severely alter the future. This is a very imaginative world. But the overall book fell flat for me. At first Maya, doesn't really like Amar. She borderline hates the person she married. But then suddenly she's in love with Amar. I hate insta-love. Unless it comes natural, insta-love just doesn't work for me. There's a lot of descriptive passages, which just went over my head. I didn't get it. Why is Maya the only savior? I'm not saying she can't be a savior, but the hows and whys just didn't make sense to me. I've seen so much praise for this book, and I don't get it. I don't say that to be mean, I just didn't fully understand this book.

Rating: Meh

Note: I received a copy of the book from the publisher (St. Martin's Griffin) in exchange for an honest review.

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