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The Scribe's Daughter (Crowns of Destiny Book 1) Kindle Edition
As Kassia unravels clues to the mysteries of her family's past, her discoveries make her the target of a man who would use her for his own dark ends.
But he has to catch her first.
Her only help comes from a band of exiles and the son of a man who has secrets of his own. After escaping the brutalities of prison, Kassia and Jack travel together through imperial cities, dark swamps, across stormy seas, and finally into the court of a man who has answers.
Too bad truth can be costly.
How much is Kassia willing to sacrifice to learn the truths her father kept from her all her life?
What if everything you thought you knew was a lie?
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“This historical-feeling book has no history but felt vaguely medieval. That rooted the world for me while the deeply drawn characters and twisting plot made me turn pages. I didn’t want it to end.” - Sara
"This book is hands down the best medieval fantasy novel I've read in years." - Lauren S.
"Kassia is a sassy, scrappy character who hooked me from the opening." - cb
"Stephanie Churchill has vividly created a world that will feel familiar to those who enjoy medieval fiction. Kassia experiences adventures that take her on the full range of fortune's wheel, and each setting is beautifully described. I had a clear vision of mountain vistas, sparkling lakes, bustling cities, and thick forests, and each felt as though I was there at Kassia's side... We get to laugh out loud at her snarky sarcasm while we are sharing her inner pain and doubt. This strong, courageous young woman goes through more to get her happily ever after than anyone in the story, besides the reader, is privy to." - Carpe Librum
•2017 New Apple Award for Excellence in Independent Publishing - Solo Medal Winner, Fantasy
•2018 Golden Book Award
•indieB.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree
•Chill with a Book Award winner
- "The Scribe's Daughter is not an easy book to categorize. It takes place in another world, but the reader will encounter no dragons or vampires. Its major female character is in her teens, but her story will appeal to readers of all ages. Kassia's life could easily be rooted in the Middle Ages, but it isn't. It is simply a very well written book about a character that readers will care about, amused by her dry humor, admiring her courage, and wincing at her recklessness." -- Sharon Kay Penman, New York Times bestselling author of Lionheart and A King's Ransom
- "An entertaining, page-turning read." -- Elizabeth Chadwick, New York Times bestselling author of The Greatest Knight
From the Inside Flap
·"An entertaining, page-turning read." -- Elizabeth Chadwick, New York Times best-selling author of The Greatest Knight
·"There are some books that you can disappear into, lose track of time and become completely embroiled in the world that the author has created -- The Scribe's Daughter is one of those books. Ms. Churchill has created a masterpiece of historical fantasy." -- Mary Anne Yarde, award-winning author of The Du Lac Chronicles
- ASIN : B012YS1Q3K
- Publication date : August 25, 2015
- Language : English
- File size : 1635 KB
- Simultaneous device usage : Unlimited
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Sticky notes : On Kindle Scribe
- Print length : 260 pages
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,065,736 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Reviewed in the United States on October 27, 2018
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Top reviews from the United States
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Nothing about this book made me think, "It's good for an indie novel." This book is just a joy to read and can hold it's own against any competition, traditional or self-published. It is beautifully written, edited, and formatted with an intriguing storyline and captivating characters.
Stephanie Churchill has vividly created a world that will feel familiar to those who enjoy medieval historical fiction. As the protagonist, Kassia, experiences adventures that take her on the full range of fortune's wheel, each setting is beautifully described. I had a clear vision of mountain vistas, sparkling lakes, bustling cities, and thick forests, and felt as though I was there at Kassia's side.
Each character that shares Kassia's trials is given a unique and complex personality, but none more so than Kassia herself. Since the novel is told from a first person point of view, the reader is inside Kassia's head. We get to laugh out loud at her snarky sarcasm while we are sharing her inner pain and doubt. This strong, courageous young woman goes through more to get to her happily ever after than anyone in the story, besides the reader, is privy to.
This novel has action, romance, betrayal, secrets, and more, sure to please any reader of historical fiction or epic fantasy adventure. I grew close to the characters during my time with them and look forward to seeing them again in future installments to the series.
Kassia, the main character is a strong willed, self reliant young lady that is quick with a sarcastic quip. Kassia is so well written that the reader is swept along with Kassia upon her journey of self discovery. Through trials and tribulations Kassia comes out the stronger for these happenings and with the author having a flair for drawing in the reader to sympathize and root for Kassia to overcome all of the obstacles thrown her way. With a wide variety of secondary characters and a well thought out story line the author tells a tale with many plot twists and turns. I enjoyed being kept guessing on what was going to happen next and how Kassia's journey would end.
I was lucky enough to be a beta reader for this book but loved it so much I went out and purchased the paper back. For a first time author, Stephanie Churchill has a fine grasp of the craft of writing and I look forward to reading many more books by her. I am especially looking forward to learning about the fate of Kassia's sister, Irisa.
I started The Scribe’s Daughter not sure what to expect. Realistic, contemporary fiction is usually my go-to genre, so I wasn’t sure I would click with this book. The very first chapter proved me wrong though. I was immediately sucked into this alternate world and incredibly intrigued by the mystery that was slowly unfolding.
I won’t include spoilers (because I hate it when reviews do that) but I will say that there were more than a few twists and turns that I never saw coming. I will also say that I felt an extremely strong connection with Kassia (the MC). She’s exactly the type of character I love—gutsy, whip smart, and totally unconventional. She’s also enormously complex and came off as a real person with real, complex problems and feelings. I loved that Kassia’s story was always layered and never fixed with a simple solution. To me, this is the hallmark of truly excellent writing.
All in all, The Scribe’s Daughter felt like a deliciously addictive mix of Margaret Atwood and J.R.R. Tolkien. I highly recommend it to anyone who likes fantasy literature of any sort.
Top reviews from other countries
The things I like most about this book was the pace, the characterisation, the writing style and syntax, all coming together to produce an enjoyable tale. The plot is intricate but not so much that its difficult to follow, and although we only glimpse small chunks of the world in which Kassia and her companions live, there is some very clever world building.
I loved the characterisations and the deep emotions that Kassia speaks of as she tells us her story in the first person. There is a cast of memorable characters, from the heavily accented pigdog 'Swine' to the handsome Jack who is captivated by Kassia and the loyal, always helpful Cai, one of my favourite secondary characters. Kassia's sense of humour and wit are a joy to listen to, but just as easily as she can make you smile, she can make you feel sad and the reader cannot fail to feel for her.
The plot is creative and intelligently woven. We learn the story of her transition from a girl to a woman, damaged by the cruel abuse she experiences on her journey. There are times when you want to shout at her and ask her what the hell is she thinking! Just like Jack, whose relationship with her has its rocky moments.
On the face of it, fantasy sometimes feels as though it must be the easiest genre to write, but can also be one of the most difficult. World building is a skill, and this is Ms Churchill's first go at it and she does it well, making you feel as though the world she is writing about once existed, somewhere in a medieval fairy tale. Her use of language and the skill she uses in putting words together in such a way that you makes you wish you had written that line. The love affair between herself and Jack is a clever device to drive the plot and there are some beautiful scenes between the two of them where the dialogue is so natural, you feel as though you are listening to two real people and not characters in a book.
This is the first book that Churchill has written in this series and there is a second called the King's Daughter, which I cannot wait to read, and i believe a third is in the offing too. Churchill is definitely an author to watch for!
The plot develops not by way of battles or magical quests, but by way of the personal development of the central character, Kassia. She suffers deprivation, hardship, and abuse as she tries to find out who she is, and why various factions are vying over her whereabouts and wellbeing. The political world into which she is unwittingly propelled is alien to her, and deeply uncomfortable. The unfolding storyline tells of Kassia's resolute efforts to choose her own future and lifestyle, despite the machinations of others.
I started listening to The Scribe's Daughter on Audible, but by about 1/3 of the way through gave that up and switched to reading on Kindle. The narration on Audible seemed good at any stage, but did not hold my attention. I found myself all too easily losing the thread of the plot, and hence becoming baffled as to why things were happening, and to whom. Reading the written word proven to be a much more satisfying experience for me, and one which made far more coherent sense of the book. No doubt some other people would have the opposite experience. The whole process, triggering such different reactions to the two versions of the same book, was very educative, and gave me cause to think about what kinds of books suit which medium.
For me, this was definitely a 5* book, primarily because of the world-building and the focus on inter-personal action rather than battles of any kind... probably some people would become impatient with it for exactly the same reasons. I am immensely glad I switched to reading rather than listening, and so persevered. The twists and turns of the plot, and the collection of environments and characters that Kassia and her party encounter, were consistently fascinating and well-drawn. My only minor niggle is that I would have appreciated a map - the whole journey presupposes one as a guide to the journeys, and it would have helped me to visualise progress.
I understand that Stephanie has written other books, thematically related to The Scribe's Daughter but not sequentially linked, and they are definitely ones that I will be tracking down.
And here she meets Rem and his son, handsome Jack and the lives of the sisters changes forever.
This is a beautifully written book, with rich and powerful descriptions of people and places that make you feel that you are there; yet they do not intrude on the pace of the story but add to the tension as it build throughout the tale. I loved the way that Kassia gives nicknames to the people she meets when she does not know their names: Lackey Man, Smug Man and so on. Kassia is an admirable heroine – feisty, brave and very down-to-earth.
There are many facets to this story and I don't want to give too much away, but it is also one of political intrigue, many dangers for Kassia and her companions and an ending that you will not see coming and that leads neatly to a sequel – though this is demonstrably a stand alone in it's own right.
Very highly recommended
Reviewed for Discovering Diamonds Blogspot
The book is written in first person, from the perspective of young Kassia, who becomes embroiled in all manner of political intrigues, fights and flights from pursuits, as the novel progresses. There is a lot of action with Kassia's backstory slowly revealed as the plot unfolds. The world that Churchill has built is believable and interesting, though I have to admit, I don't really understand the creation of a different world where nothing is substantially different from a pseudo-medieval Europe. If there is no magic or dragons or something else that doesn't exist on Earth, why not set it in the real world at some interesting point in history? This felt at times like historical fiction masquerading as fantasy, or perhaps vice versa. Having said that, the setting did not detract from the story or my enjoyment of the book, and Churchill has created a rich world, with a real sense of realism.
The plot trips along at a fair old pace, with Kassia being confronted with one obstacle after another. Churchill's writing is excellent, with many an elegant turn of phrase. The writing seemed to get more assured and the characters stronger in definition as the book progressed, but speaking from my own experience of writing, I think that is often the case with debut novels.
The Scribe's Daughter is a great debut from a very talented new author. The story is fast-paced and exciting, with enough twists and turns to keep readers entertained, but Stephanie Churchill's outstanding achievement is her protagonist, Kassia, a heroine with a uniquely sarcastic and lively voice who you will root for and feel like you know after the first few pages of the novel.
Matthew Harffy, author of The Serpent Sword (The Bernicia Chronicles Book 1)