In The Star-Touched Queen, lush descriptions and exotic details are paired with an epic and mythical feel to create a beautiful book with a really cool story nestled inside. This book has both content and style, and yet I would hesitate to hand it to just anyone because the style will overwhelm some readers.
Fate and fortune. Power and passion. What does it take to be the queen of a kingdom when you’re only seventeen?
Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of Death and Destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father’s kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran’s queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar’s wife, she finds something else entirely: Compassion. Protection. Desire…
But Akaran has its own secrets — thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unravel an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most. . .including herself.
A lush and vivid story that is steeped in Indian folklore and mythology. The Star-Touched Queen is a novel that no reader will soon forget.
It felt like a fever dream. Things would inexplicably shift and I wasn’t always sure what had happened or why. Neither was the narrator, and yet she kept forging ahead while I was left a beat behind, still trying to explain what she just accepted. It reads like a lot of the world literature works I teach, and if you are not willing to just accept some strange elements popping up and go with the flow, it may leave you frustrated. I think the biggest hurdle appears shortly before the main character faces a monumental decision, and as the story got murkier and more mystical, I felt that a lot of my high school students would close the book and move on. That would be a shame because the resolution is satisfying, but I know my students well enough to say it would be the breaking point. There is an audience for this book, and I certainly see it garnering awards. I think it would be a great book to push readers to a new level. However, I can’t see it being a book that gets more attention from YA readers than from adult readers of YA. It is appropriate for high school readers.
I received an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.