Graceling

Graceling - Kristin Cashore I found the two main characters really likeable. Katsa displays her weight's worth in strength, both physical and mental, and I like how she evolved, from the king's thug/assassin into a person who wanted to think for herself. The way a lot of her interactions with Po happened also accounts for the fact that their relationship developed in a way that was more one of equality, and that was a good thing. I'm not too fond of damsels in distress; Katsa was all but that. As for Po, he behaved in a funny but respectful way.

The world developed in this storycaught my interest. Although some things are brushed past quickly enough—we aren't given all the details about what seem to be complex political relationships—I think there's a lot of potential here, and I hope the author will explore it in later installments.

The only part I trudged through was the travel one, in the second third of the book. I enjoyed the events set in castles and towns more than the "they travel" part. Actually, I almost gave it only 3 stars because of that. On the other hand, I'm no fan of what I call "travel fantasy", I know it, I wasn't surprised by how I reacted to those chapters, and I feel it would be unfair to knock one star down just because of a very personal preference. This "they travel" part wasn't badly written anyway, and someone who appreciates such type of fantasy narrative would surely like it.