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.
Chick and Brain Rating: 3 out of 5 Stars
I was dreading reading this book. I know I know, I said it but please hear me out. I do not have the best of luck when it comes to hyped books. I usually end up HATING them, and people give me grief about it or the exact opposite. I am always on the opposite end of everyone else, so I did not want to be the one to give this book a bad review. However, the library FINALLY sent it to me, so I gave it a shot. I was not disappointed.
It is no secret that I am a fan of retelling tales. However, this was not the generic fairy tale, this was about Hades and Persephone (which btw is my favorite tale in Greek mythology) so yeah I jumped on this bandwagon quick. The story began and sucked me in with all its poetry and prose which were amazing. Chokshi set the perfect stage for the story to begin, but then it kept going on and on. We find ourselves about a 1/3 of the way through the book with nothing but pretty words and no substance to anything that was going on. We are even confused as to who Maya and Amar really were to each other, it was really only the background information of the mythological tale that could clarify any information during this time. It was not until more than half way through that narrative before anything of substance really took shape. After this point, we are treated to a wonderful story of intrigue and the genuine love story that we all wanted from the beginning.
Taking into account that this is the story of Persephone and Hades, the “insta-love” between Amar and Maya is understandable. If we were not aware of this information, the narrative does not seem believable in any manner. We can believe in love at first sight, at times we expect but this amount of devotion between the two main characters is so immediately it is incomprehensible. We are not given any information or background of the characters to explain these feelings. Having finished the story, we are given a better understanding of where these feelings may have come from however some readers may be confused and possibly turned off by this lack of knowledge in the beginning.
Chokshi writes a wonderful story, but it honestly just took entirely too long for me to get to it. I found myself relying more on my past knowledge of the mythological tale of Hades and Persephone to make my way through the early parts of the narrative. Once, we are given the needed information, the story takes off and weaves itself into something beautiful. However, it takes to long for this to happen. Many of the readers are finished before the narrative ever has a chance to get started.
Until next time,