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The Crown of Embers (Girl of Fire and Thorns)

The Crown of Embers - Rae Carson 7/11/13 ** Enjoyed reading this a second time, thinking more about the role of God in the characters' lives and in the world of Joya de Arena, Orovalle, and Invierne. I see a metaphor for some of the battles over religion in our own world. I so appreciate fantasy novels that deal with the social issues we encounter in our own world.

Hoping to win an ARC of The Bitter Kingdom in the online give-away this week (see Rae Carson's website) - otherwise, will buy the third book at her signing on 8/30/13.

6/28/12 ** I scored an ARC - well, actually, my husband traded an ARC of his soon-to-be-released ASHEN WINTER for an ARC of CROWN of EMBERS. He gave it to me for my birthday, and I read it in nearly one day.

Excellent book: Carson successfully navigated the challenge of creating a second book that was as good or better than her first. CROWN has a strong female protagonist, lots of internal growth in which she figures out the difference between external power and internal power. Well-paced action, good romance (and consideration of personal needs as balanced with duty).

The bad part of reading an ARC is that it's even longer until the next book in the series comes out - and it's a cliff-hanger ending. Ugh. :(

Rae Carson is an author that I will be reading for a long time to come: She's now in my favorites list, right beside Tamora Pierce, Kristin Cashore, and Robin McKinley.