Monday, 9 May 2011
Review: The Swan Kingdom - Zoe Marriott
Exiled and betrayed, Alexandra must face magic, murder and the loss of all she holds dear in a desperate struggle against evil.
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Alexandra is youngest child and only daughter of the King & Queen and has always felt like an ugly duckling amongst her family. She loves spending time with her mother and brothers but doesn't get on so well with her father who finds her a disappointment because she isn't pretty enough. She loves learning about the healing properties of plants and how to use the magic of the earth from her mother and has become a skilled healer. Alexandra's life changes dramatically when her mother is killed by a horrific monster when walking in the woods. Her father is driven mad with grief and when he meets a beautiful woman he quickly re-marries. Alexandra's step-mother isn't all she seems though and soon Alexandra and her brothers find themselves separated and exiled from their home. Can Alexandra find her brothers and can she break the hold her step-mother has over her father and the rest of her people?
The Swan Kingdom is a re-telling of fairy tale The Wild Swans by Hans Christian Andersen but as I've never read the original I'm not going to compare the two stories in this review. I found The Swan Kingdom was a captivating and beautiful read and I finished it in one sitting. The writing is beautifully descriptive and made it easy to picture Alexandra's home and her country. I loved finding out about the magical abilities that Alexandra and her mother had and the way they were able to use the power of the earth. The story has a great fairytale feel to it that took me back to my childhood and would make great bedtime reading material for children.
Alexandra was a lovely heroine and it was easy spending time inside her head. Her mother's death devastates her but when her family and her people are under threat she will do anything it takes to help them. She is determined to find a way to stop her wicked step-mother and bring her family back together. It won't be easy for her and she will face difficult times but her strength of character will see her through it. The Swan Kingdom is a beautiful fantasy fairytale and one that I'm sure I'll be reading again.
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