BITTERBLUE was far more civilized than FIRE and GRACELING. Bitterblue wasn’t gorgeous and impulsive (okay, she did SOME impulsive things as the book progressed). It was softer, and it made me think more. I had a sad book hangover when this finished, wishing there was more in this world for me to explore.
Characters: Bitterblue is the most believable/relatable of Cashore’s protagonists because she is dealing with growing responsibilities, and she isn’t drop-dead-gorgeous, like her other heroines. The range of characters was fun, and they were all well-developed. I could picture the characters so well, that several scenes lingered in my brain after I finished the book—in particular, the kissing party.
Plot: This explored the dynamics of lingering problems after Leck’s downfall. I liked that it wasn’t tidy, and that the characters weren’t black and white. They were all shades of grey. Cashore also brings back characters from past books to tidy the end. Although it didn’t end in a wedding, I think the end of this book was the most hopeful.
Setting: Perfect. You’re in the castle, and you’re in the city. Her writing process for this novel was intense. She essentially spent four years writing it, and then started over. So she had tons of time to build up her world. It shows.
5/5. Get a copy.