The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson Review

Release Date: September 20, 2011
Publisher: Harper Collins
Age: Young Adult
Genre: Fantasy, Adventure, Magic, Some Romance
Format: E-Book
Source: Publisher via Netgalley
Once a century, one person is chosen for greatness. Elisa is the chosen one. But she is also the younger of two princesses, the one who has never done anything remarkable. She can’t see how she ever will. Now, on her sixteenth birthday, she has become the secret wife of a handsome and worldly king—a king whose country is in turmoil. A king who needs the chosen one, not a failure of a princess. And he’s not the only one who needs her. Savage enemies seething with dark magic are hunting her. A daring, determined revolutionary thinks she could be his people’s savior. And he looks at her in a way that no man has ever looked at her before. Soon it is not just her life, but her very heart that is at stake. Elisa could be everything to those who need her most. If the prophecy is fulfilled. If she finds the power deep within herself. If she doesn’t die young. Most of the chosen do.
What an amazing book! The Girl of Fire and Thorns is the journey of a young woman, Elisa, betrothed to a King. She feels she is not Queen material. And really, she's not.  She's a sheltered young princess who has never done anything spectacular or anything at all. While her older sister is much more accomplished, Elisa cannot see why she has to be the one to marry him. She doubts herself and her ability, often wondering how she can rule these people? Throughout the story she grows more than any main character I've read in awhile. By the end she is someone new completely.

At 16 Elisa is shooed off to the new kingdom and she soon finds out it may be to save her. She is the chosen one, who bears a God Stone. While the idea of the God Stone is a little strange it worked so well in this story. Completely original and fresh new tale for those of us that love Fantasy and Coming of Age stories but have read so many we want something new. It's a Magical Fantasy story told in such a wonderful way. Ms. Carson is a writer I will definitely be following and I can't wait to read more.

My favorite part of this book is the growth we see in Elisa. She goes from this young bride to this incredible warrior. She sees people for who they are and I never got the feeling that she thought she was better than anyone else. Throughout the book we are reminded that Elisa is not perfect, and I loved that because no one is perfect.

Being kidnapped from her new home she learns to defend herself and stands up for others. Without giving away too much I would compare her new found awesomeness to that of Yelena from The Study Series by Maria V. Snyder and Katsa from Graceling by Kristin Cashore. She can definitely hold her own by the end of the book. She was a born leader she just needed the chance to let that shine, and she gets her opportunity.

It's a book full of surprises, twists, and turns. I recommend it to everyone. Whether you like action, adventure, romance, fantasy, or magic this one is for you.


  1. I'm glad to see that you are enjoying this book. I really enjoyed all the twists and turns this book took as well. New follower. Come visit me over at Livre De Amour-Books of Love Blog.

  2. Ohmiword! Your review feels spot on. Elisa's growth was my favourite part of this book too, she was so beautifully written and developed. I can't wait to write my review.