Author: Roshani Chokshi
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Release Date: April 26th, 2016!
Fate and fortune. Power and passion. What does it take to be the queen of a kingdom when you’re only seventeen?
Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of death and destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father’s kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran’s queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar’s wife, she finds something else entirely: Compassion. Protection. Desire…
But Akaran has its own secrets—thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unravel an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most…including herself.
My Review!*Minor spoilery, I think!
I’ve wanted to read this one ever since I heard of it, but it took me a long time to actually get a copy and READ IT. And now I’m all omg whyyyyy did I wait so long. This book was gorgeous, inside and outside. Roshani Chokshi’s writing is beautiful, flowery, and even a bit whimsical. It’s the kind of writing that tells you to slow down and savor the story. It’s the kind of writing that I fall in love with from the first sentence.
The Star-Touched Queen is told in the POV of Mayavati, daughter of one of the most powerful people in Bharata, but a terrible father. Maya is a girl and so is only good for one thing: marriage. But when a trap is set and Maya is caught in the middle of it, she flees the only home she’s ever known and becomes the wife of Amar. He whisks her away to the kingdom of Akaran, and Maya learns more than she’d ever known.
Much of the focus on the first part of the book is the relationship between Maya and Amar. And let me tell you, I was swooning and shipping it from the moment they met. Though it seems to develop way too quickly to believe in a love strong enough to shadow everything else in the world, I believed it. And I knew there was more to their romance than simply a chance encounter between strangers. Plus SERIOUS SWOONS.
“I know your soul. Everything else is an ornament.”
“My star-touched queen, I would break the world to give you what you want.”
“I want to lie beside you and know the weight of your dreams. I want to share whole worlds with you and write your name in the stars. I want to measure eternity with your laughter.”
I adored the banter between the two of them. Maya, who had been controlled by men all her life and who had never been given a voice, finds in Amar a love that not only considers her an equal but treats her as a queen. Amar enhanced the strength she’d already possessed, gave her the courage to reach for the stars, and pushed Maya to accept the power within her. A power that Maya never knew she had.
I loved the feisty and curious Maya. Here is a girl who had always wanted more from life than a marriage to a man who’d consider her just another one of his harem. A girl who dreamed and wished for her own life. I could understand her reservations, and her mistrust of this new world. And I loved her development; this girl who’d had no voice but who learned how to scream and ask for more.
“I have been a forgotten princess, a stubborn queen and a false Sadhvi.”
And it was easy to fall irrevocably in love with Amar and his poetic speech. And the kingdom of Akaran, which is so much more than a shadow between worlds. I was so enchanted by this rundown castle, the magic within those darkened walls, the weight of what it means to be in charge of it. It was alluring, especially the mystery of Amar and his companion, and why he brought Maya there.
Throughout the book, everything is unraveled, from the truth behind Amar’s smiles and his love for Maya, and the reason she feels like she is home. While a little predictable, I could not stop reading and I just wanted to know it all. And I just wanted my ship to find each other again, to be given the second chance they so rightly deserved. The second chance, also, between two sisters who are now strangers.
I’m so, so excited for Gauri’s story. I was a little sad that she and Maya did not get much time together, but I’m glad that she gets her own book. It sounds SO good, and I hope there is a reunion in the two’s futures. ;) I fell deeply in love with The Star-Touched Queen, guys. The ship was everything to me, and the writing swept me away from real life until I was finished. It was, in a word, GORGEOUS.