Expected publication is January 5, 2016 from Margaret K. McElderry Books
This review is based on an uncorrected advance copy
The story took a while to warm up, but the storytelling was compelling, and eventually the characters grew into people the reader could care about. However, I think the most interesting part of the story was the magical theory. Magic takes on two forms: fire and ice. Depending on how much ability one has with either determines the balance and/or control one has of either magic. The Valtia is the queen of this country and has complete balance of both fire and ice. The story is told through the upcoming Valtia, Elli, who has been raised in the palace since her discovery at a very young age; however, since she is so coddled and protected, she has no personality until the story forces her to grow-up. Luckily, no love triangle grew out of the story, but it took forever to get answers to my questions, and the main story wasn’t resolved, so it’ll have to wait for the next book in the series. Overall, I’m glad I read this book and I know lots of people will love it, but I don’t think I’ll be adding it to my permanent personal library.
Here’s what the publisher has to say about this book:
Sixteen-year-old Elli was a small child when the Elders of Kupari chose her to succeed the Valtia, the queen who wields infinitely powerful ice and fire magic. Since then, Elli has lived in the temple, surrounded by luxury and tutored by magical priests, as she prepares for the day when the Valtia perishes and the magic finds a new home in her. Elli is destined to be the most powerful Valtia to ever rule.
But when the queen dies defending the kingdom from invading warriors, the magic doesn’t enter Elli. It’s nowhere to be found.
Disgraced, Elli flees to the outlands, the home of banished criminals—some who would love to see the temple burn with all its priests inside. As she finds her footing in this new world, Elli uncovers devastating new information about the Kupari magic, those who wield it, and the prophecy that foretold her destiny. Torn between the love she has for her people and her growing loyalty to the banished, Elli struggles to understand the true role she was meant to play. But as war looms, she must align with the right side—before the kingdom and its magic are completely destroyed.