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Graceling by Kristin Cashore
MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
5,655435755 (4.18)1 / 614
Authors:Kristin Cashore
Info:Orlando, FL : Harcourt, 2008.
Collections:Your library, Reviewed
Tags:type: hardback, age: young adult, genre: fantasy, read 2009, read 2010, strong women, read 2011, read 2012, read 2014

Work details

Graceling by Kristin Cashore

  1. 322
    The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (librarymeg, saltypepper)
    saltypepper: The heroines' voices are very similar, maybe due to their similar response to the awful circumstances they find themselves in.
  2. 261
    Fire by Kristin Cashore (SheReads, Anonymous user)
    SheReads: Prequel to Graceling about different characters.
    Anonymous user: because you get the same different world paranormal thing and you get the romance and the good conquers evil
  3. 200
    The Hero and the Crown by Robin McKinley (Aerrin99, humouress)
    Aerrin99: Aerin and Katsa are both gifted women who struggle to find the line between respect and fear. Also, they kick butt.
    humouress: The way the heroines feel like outsiders because of their heritage is similar, as is the way the authors describe the way the heroines think.
  4. 201
    Alanna: The First Adventure by Tamora Pierce (francescadefreitas, helgagrace, espertus)
    espertus: Both Graceling and the Lioness quartet are stories of strong but vulnerable young women wanting to use their considerable powers for good and maintain their identity in the face of romance.
  5. 170
    Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder (deadbookdarling)
    deadbookdarling: Both are set in magical worlds, have strong female leads and a dash of romance.
  6. 170
    The Blue Sword by Robin McKinley (foggidawn, Aerrin99, humouress)
    Aerrin99: For stories that feature interesting and strong woman matched with equally interesting and strong men, with a dash of danger, adventure, and magic tossed in, try either of these books!
    humouress: The way the heroines feel like outsiders because of their heritage is similar, as is the way the authors describe the way the heroines think.
  7. 90
    Terrier by Tamora Pierce (notemily)
  8. 50
    Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta (alaskabookworm)
  9. 73
    The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner (notemily, C.Vick)
    C.Vick: While different in essence, I think Turner's Attolia books have a similar feel to Graceling.
  10. 51
    First Test by Tamora Pierce (foggidawn)
  11. 20
    Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas (luna_lovegood)
    luna_lovegood: Exactly as kazhout said "strong, beautiful, intelligent, and sassy." Plus, badass and good heart.
  12. 20
    Mistwood by Leah Cypess (foggidawn)
  13. 20
    The Singer of All Songs by Kate Constable (bbrux)
    bbrux: Young woman on an adventure to discover her hidden talents.
  14. 21
    The Queen of Attolia by Megan Whalen Turner (Nikkles)
  15. 10
    Moribito: Guardian of the Spirit by Nahoko Uehashi (avatiakh)
  16. 10
    Cinder by Marissa Meyer (Rozax)
    Rozax: Protagonist is relegated to third-class citizenship because of her gifts and must overcome prejudice.
  17. 00
    The Legacy of Tril: Soulbound by Heather Brewer (SunnySD)
  18. 00
    Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo (bluepolicebox)
    bluepolicebox: Similar magic system.
  19. 00
    Defy by Sara B. Larson (BookLizard)
    BookLizard: Strong female character. Political intrigue. Realistic love triangle.
  20. 00
    The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima (furieous)

(see all 30 recommendations)


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English (433)  Dutch (1)  Swedish (1)  Spanish (1)  All languages (436)
Showing 1-5 of 433 (next | show all)
I give up. 77% in and I can read not a single word more. It has become so tedious and boring and bland. I usually automatically 1-star all DNF's, but this admittedly had a handful of redeeming qualities.

It started off with such promise. The heroine is strong and independent. There's no insta-love. The hero is sweet and quite endearing. It's sad, but even with all if that going for it, it fell apart.

I picked this up a number of times, even well after I didn't want to, because I wanted so much to like it and to care. Let's face it, though. There's nothing enjoyable about forcing yourself through a book that is failing to engage you.

I'll review more in-depth at a later time. ( )
  JennyJen | Aug 14, 2014 |
I'm so glad someone recommended this book to me. I am so not, even a little bit, disappointed.

The ending, oh the ending, it's good. I think I've felt happy and lonely at the same time. And it's a good kind of loneliness. Po. Oh Po. ( )
  margaraawr | Aug 8, 2014 |
I'm so glad someone recommended this book to me. I am so not, even a little bit, disappointed.

The ending, oh the ending, it's good. I think I've felt happy and lonely at the same time. And it's a good kind of loneliness. Po. Oh Po. ( )
  margaraawr | Aug 8, 2014 |
The book was okay, but its saving grace (sorry couldn't resist the pun) is the unique magic system the author has created.

Certain people have mismatched eyes and are graced, meaning they have a particular skill or talent. Some talents are as simple as a skill at cooking, but others are more mystical such as swimming like a fish or reading minds.

Katsa has the Grace of killing. Her uncle, the king, uses her to dispense punishment to people who displease him, but Katsa’s not content to simply be her uncle’s pawn. She established the council to help people in trouble when the kings make unjust decisions. She thought she’d be alone, but the council has expanded and now spans the seven kingdoms. The council does things such as shelter farmers who are being punished for not paying their taxes after the king’s men trampled their crops.

On one such mission for the council, Katsa goes to rescue the father of one of the kings who has been kidnapped. There she meets a young man who has the grace of fighting. She knocks him unconscious and returns to her kingdom with the kidnapped man only to have the graced fighter show up at her king’s court. The man’s name is Po and the man who was kidnapped is his grandfather and he’s here to rescue him.

Deciding to trust this young man, whose silver and gold eyes have a disarming effect on Katsa, the council tries to figure out who kidnapped his grandfather.

The first half of Graceling is quick paced and interesting. Then the characters go on a journey and it becomes a series of traveling and running. I’ve read lots of fantasy so I’m accustomed to such ‘journey’ novels, but it caught me off guard after the exciting beginning.

The characters are good, but I felt like the idea of the main characters was better than the execution. (They started out well, but it’s almost as if the author couldn’t keep up the good writing.) I liked all of the minor characters and kept wishing to see more of them, especially the villain.

At around 50% there’s a sex scene making this an older YA novel, though you can see it coming and it’s easy enough to skip.

From the moment I learned the true nature of Po’s Grace I was afraid of what was going to happen. I hoped the author wouldn’t be so obvious, but sadly she was.

If you’re one of those ‘show’ don’t ‘tell’ people the first two books of this series will annoy you. The author tells a lot and it feels like we’re missing some good stuff that happened. By Bitterblue the author’s figured out how to tell a story, she still tells how time passes, but unlike the first two books the telling flows naturally.

Overall I don’t really recommend the Graceling books. They don’t live up their excellent premise. If you’re curious, I’d say read the first half of Graceling. Literally at 50% on my kindle is when it goes downhill. (Or uphill as they’re climbing a mountain.) Whatever you make up in your head for the rest of the book will be better than what happened in my opinion, though I doubt I could ever read half of a book.

Graceling- 7 Stars (First half 8 stars, second half 6)

Fire- 6 Stars (Same, First half 7 stars, second half 5)

Bitterblue- 6 Stars (whole book consistent) ( )
  mollymortensen | Aug 5, 2014 |
3.5 stars.

Plot line was really predictable at times. Characters were likeable, relatable, though the two main were getting on my nerves a lot by the end- too whiny. Decently well written. Despite being soaked in violence, most of the time I didn't feel it was overdone.

The villain was definitely creepy, enough that, despite his rather limited involvement, I probably wouldn't have read this book knowing that was the realm of evil I was getting involved in.

Truly, I felt the novel did well enough on it's own that a sequel wasn't necessary. So I kind of wonder how it's going to go in the next book. ( )
  lyssa73 | Aug 2, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 433 (next | show all)
In a world of gossip girls, it is perhaps refreshing to have a teenage heroine who cuts off all her hair because it gets in her way; and Kristin Cashore’s eccentric and absorbing first novel, “Graceling,” has such a heroine. Katsa is tough, awkward, beautiful and consumed by pressing moral issues

» Add other authors (12 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kristin Cashoreprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Baker, David AaronNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For my mother,
Nedda Previtera Cashore,
who has a meatball Grace,
and my father,
J. Michael Cashore,
who is Graced with losing (and finding) his glasses
First words
In these dungeons the darkness was complete, but Katsa had a map in her mind.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0547258305, Paperback)

If you had the power to kill with your bare hands, what would you do with it?

Graceling takes readers inside the world of Katsa, a warrior-girl in her late teens with one blue eye and one green eye. This gives her haunting beauty, but also marks her as a Graceling. Gracelings are beings with special talents—swimming, storytelling, dancing. Katsa's Grace is considered more useful: her ability to fight (and kill, if she wanted to) is unequaled in the seven kingdoms. Forced to act as a henchman for a manipulative king, Katsa channels her guilt by forming a secret council of like-minded citizens who carry out secret missions to promote justice over cruelty and abuses of power.

Combining elements of fantasy and romance, Cashore skillfully portrays the confusion, discovery, and angst that smart, strong-willed girls experience as they creep toward adulthood. Katsa wrestles with questions of freedom, truth, and knowing when to rely on a friend for help. This is no small task for an angry girl who had eschewed friendships (with the exception of one cousin that she trusts) for her more ready skills of self-reliance, hunting, and fighting. Katsa also comes to know the real power of her Grace and the nature of Graces in general: they are not always what they appear to be.

Graceling is the first book in a series, and Kristin Cashore’s first work of fiction. It sets up a vivid world with engaging characters that readers will certainly look forward to following beyond the last chapter of this book. (Ages 14 and up) --Heidi Broadhead

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

(see all 3 descriptions)

In a world where some people are born with extreme and often-feared skills called Graces, Katsa struggles for redemption from her own horrifying Grace, the Grace of killing, and teams up with another young fighter to save their land from a corrupt king.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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