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Guinevere's Gift by Nancy Mckenzie
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Reviewed by Joan Stradling for TeensReadToo.com

At the time of her birth, a prophecy foretold Guinevere would one day be wed to a great king and be the highest lady in the land. Guinevere herself refuses to believe this will be so.

After all, she's thirteen years old and an orphan living at the mercy of her uncle and aunt, the king and queen of Gwynedd. She prefers riding horses to more feminine tasks, and it would be unlikely a great king would look twice at her boyish figure.

When Gwen discovers an ancient tribe, she learns they not only accept the prophecy as truth, but they have been guarding her all her life. Guinevere is no longer sure what to believe. In the midst of inner turmoil, she uncovers a sinister plot against her uncle and aunt that threatens not only their lives, but the lives of the ancient tribe, as well. It's up to Guinevere to unravel the plot and save the lives of those she loves.

Though the characters presented in these books are well known and loved by many, McKenzie is able to give them new life and has made them her own while still remaining true to the legend. The reader is introduced to Guinevere as a young girl before she even meets Arthur, and this is a wonderful side to see of the future queen.

This is the first book in THE CHRYSALIS QUEEN QUARTET, and Ms. McKenzie does a fantastic job of introducing this new side to the legend of King Arthur. GUINEVERE'S GIFT is a great beginning to what is sure to become a series of books loved by fans of Arthurian legend.

Though I know how the story ends, I loved the beginning of the journey as seen through the eyes of the girl who will be queen. I look forward to seeing how Guinevere and the other characters grow toward their destinies in GUINEVERE'S GAMBLE, the second book in the series. ( )
  GeniusJen | Oct 11, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0375843450, Hardcover)

On the night of Guinevere’s birth, there was a prophecy that foretold she would one day be highest lady in the land and wed to a great king. But 13 years have passed, and the prophecy couldn’t be further off. Guinevere is now an orphan and a ward of her aunt and uncle, the king and queen of Gwynedd. Tomboyish and awkward, Gwen is no great beauty, and nobody takes the prophecy seriously–especially not Gwen.
But then one day Gwen meets a strange young man in the woods who claims to be part of an ancient tribe whose mission is to guard and protect her. Then she stumbles across a sinister plot brewing within the castle walls–one she alone might be able to prevent. Guinevere is beginning to realize her destiny is more complex than it seems–and this is only the beginning.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:25:17 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

When the orphaned Guinevere is twelve years old, living with Queen Alyse and King Pellinore of Gwynedd, she fearlessly helps rescue her cousin from kidnappers who are plotting to seize the palace and overthrow the king, even as the queen despairs of Guinevere's rebellious nature.… (more)

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