I lost a night of sleep and a day of work to this book. Usually drawn to
decidedly toothier fare, I was ready for a little treat. I was not prepared for
an all-encompassing vortex of storytelling that would render all of my other
responsibilities utterly unimportant. Both a gripping adventure tale and a
moving portrait of a tempestuous, beautifully flawed young woman coming of age,
marks the debut of a truly gifted writer.
Every so often in The Seven Kingdoms, a child is born with mismatched eyes.
These children are Graced, or gifted, with an extreme skill, and are sent into
the service of the king as their Grace develops. Some are Graced with
mind-reading, cooking, or dancing, but Graceling's heroine, Katsa, is Graced
with fighting. She can clear a room of 20 armed men in minutes, with her bare
hands. She's ten times faster and stronger...
Beyond the Book
Nanotechnology in medieval times
is certainly set in a magical history, the time
period seems distinctly medieval, based on the descriptions of clothing,
weapons, buildings, and the general atmosphere. A descriptive passage towards
the end of Graceling
made me wonder about the science and craft of
stained-glass-making in medieval times. Wielding the magical powers of The World
Wide Web, I was startled to find news of a recent study that suggests that
medieval stained glass windows painted with real gold actually purify the air
when sunlight shines through them.