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To Play the Lady Paperback – September 11, 2011
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"Children of Blood and Bone"
Tomi Adeyemi conjures a stunning world of dark magic and danger in her West African-inspired fantasy debut. Pre-order today
About the Author
Naomi Lane has been daydreaming up silly stories for as long as she can remember, and one day she thought it would be fun to write some of them down. After finishing the first story, everyone kept asking when they could read it, so she self-published To Play the Lady. When not daydreaming about fantasy worlds she works as an energy consultant in downtown Boston, and also lives in Boston with her husband and their two cats. Email her at email@example.com or visit her website at www.sevalianchronicles.com.
Top customer reviews
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A well written book is wonderful to read in this age of sloppily written, sex-filled rubbish, but I just can't get my head around reading about children, who are portrayed as far too grown up, and remain squeamish free.
I loved this story from the start, her character is easily one of the most rebelious I've ever read, constantly defying restrictions placed on her--often by accident. This book kept me engrossed with a constant movement in plot, a light tasteful romance, and like in the Circle series, a consistent interesting and engaging take on magic.
In addition to that, the book offers a well thought out plot and background, rich with court convolution and political messes and of course several royal sized dangerous secrets teased at.
Overall, an incredibly rich book for an escape, a little long to easily read unless you set aside an afternoon but well worth reading for any age.
The book opens with Jenna and her brother Peter, making their way to the capital city to join the royal court. Children of a wealthy merchant, they are the first commoners ever invited to play Knight and Lady at the castle. Jenna has more love for sword-fighting than embroidery, a magic (and un-lady like) connection to horses, and a talent for unwittingly stumbling into mischief and knocking herself unconscious (she passes out at least 4 times during the book). Plots against the kingdom, a discovery of rare and unusual magics, and a brief romance with a prince, all make this a fun, if somewhat expected, read.
WHY THREE STARS?
I look forward to reading Naomi Lane's books in a few years. Jenna's world is believable and complex, and Jenna herself is completely lovable. That being said, there's a lot of room to grow. There's only so many times that a heroine can believably save the country in one book. Jenna's heroics start almost immediately upon arriving at the castle, and her mistakes in the beginning of the book rarely have serious consequences (at one point she dresses up in men's clothing, sneaks off to the stables to play with the crown prince's horse, gets caught, and essentially gets a slap on the wrist). I wanted Lane to give Jenna a little more time to struggle with her new environment. As is, I didn't feel like the character had earned her many accolades from the crown. The writing also had a few issues - Lane occasionally gets a little heavy with the passive voice- but much of that can be solved by a good editor.
If you're looking for your next literary love affair, and don't want to take a chance on a first-time author, this book might not be for you. But if you read a lot, and are willing to take a risk, this is a fun way to spend a summer afternoon.
Similar (but time-tested) Authors:
* Patricia Wrede
* Sherwood Smith
* Tamora Pierce