The Queens of Innis Lear by Tessa Gratton
A kingdom at risk, a crown divided, a family drenched in blood.
The erratic decisions of a prophecy-obsessed king have drained Innis Lear of its wild magic, leaving behind a trail of barren crops and despondent subjects. Enemy nations circle the once-bountiful isle, sensing its growing vulnerability, hungry to control the ideal port for all trade routes.
The king's three daughters—battle-hungry Gaela, master manipulator Reagan, and restrained, starblessed Elia—know the realm's only chance of resurrection is to crown a new sovereign, proving a strong hand can resurrect magic and defend itself. But their father will not choose an heir until the longest night of the year, when prophecies align and a poison ritual can be enacted.
Refusing to leave their future in the hands of blind faith, the daughters of Innis Lear prepare for war—but regardless of who wins the crown, the shores of Innis will weep the blood of a house divided.
Series: The Queens of Innis Lear #1
Published by Tor Pages: 576
Genres: Retelling, Adult, Fantasy
Review The Queens of Innis Lear:
When I requested the arc of The Queens of Innis Lear I almost knew next to nothing about this book. I knew it was a retelling of Shakespeare’s King Lear with a very strong female cast and to be honest that is all I needed to know. I love Shakespeare and as followers of my blog might know all-ready,, I have weak spot for powerful woman. You don’t need to be a huge Shakespeare fan to enjoy this book, but I would highly recommend you look up the synopsis of King Lear before diving into this story.
I myself absolutely loved it. It is my first 5 star read of 2018 and it just blew me away. I loved how the story kept largely true to the original story, but how Tessa Graton added several more layers and depth to the story. Even small parts of the original story were in-bedded in this retelling but got a whole new meaning in this fantasy context. And of course that is the main difference with the original the fantasy setting.
Marvelously executed! I absolutely loved the detailed world-building.Lots of time is spend describing places and settings, but it never gets boring. Quite the opposite really, it brings this mystical world to live. I hope the printed edition will have a map because that would have made my reading experience even better. I kept feeling the need to look at the map so I could visualize even more.
Apart from that The Queens of Innis Lear has a very intriguing, mysterious dark magic and believe system. In this first installment not everything is explained and revealed. But that what you do experience makes you long for more. I want to know all about how the tree magic works and how the stars are read. The magic system in itself goes wonderfully with the dark and mysterious world that is created. Its complicated with a serious amount of depth.
And the writing, lets talk about the writing for a moment. It was so hard not to fall head over heels in love with the lyrical and poetic writing style. You really could feel Shakespeare in the story, but more accessible. It is not as heavy and confusing as an original Shakespearean play might ready. Its a big book, but you fly through the pages, just wanting to know what is going to happen next. And for me that proofs how good this book really is, because I know what was coming next and still I kept craving more and more.
And then there are of course the ladies in this story. The Queens of Innis Lear…. The story is told from multiple POV’s and apart from one they are all female; Tessa Graton did a wonderfull job giving each of the Lear Daughters their own voice. The characters are well developed and have their own background story; And yes, each in their own way are strong, independent woman who fight for what they believe in.
I can hardly wait to continue on with the series! I wouldn’t be surprised of The Queens of Innis Lear would end up in my top 10 favorite books of 2018!