Author: Roshani Chokshi
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Retelling, Romance
Release Date: April 26th 2016
Book Length: 342 pages
Publisher: St. Martins Griffin
Publisher: St. Martins Griffin
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.
A lush and vivid story that is steeped in Indian folklore and mythology. The Star-Touched Queen is a novel that no reader will soon forget.
“I was free.
I was whole.
I was Queen of Naraka.”
The Star-Touched Queen is a spellbinding debut based on a Hades and Persephone retelling with a focus on Indian folklore, mythology, horoscopes and infused with wild imagination and enchanting writing.
Princess Maya lives in a kingdom where horoscopes are law, they’re your destiny and there is no running away from them, they can be a gift of a curse. Maya’s horoscope promises a marriage of Death and Destruction so she has learned to ignore the snide looks and nasty remarks of those around her and instead find comfort in books and their vast knowledge. That is until one day her father arranges her hand in marriage to a complete stranger to avoid war with another kingdom.
Maya is a fantastic character, although she’s had a pretty secluded upbringing she’s fierce and eager for a life where she isn’t judged on her gender and isn’t made to live in the shadow of her future husband. Amar, oh gosh, talk about swoony princes. Amar is sinfully delicious, I was constantly re-reading everything he says, and he’s the type of character that I imagined to purr everything. Prepare yourself for major feels and fangirling!!
“I know your soul. Everything else is an ornament.”
What’s great about this book is that it extends past the marriage; it’s so much more than an arranged marriage and what will happen between Maya and Amar. There are layers of mystery, magic and intrigue, it reminded me a lot of Cruel Beauty with a palace that seems to have a life of it’s own and is slow to reveal it’s secrets.
“My star-touched queen,” he said softly, as if he was remembering something long ago. “I would break the world to give you what you want.”
The romance is slow to burn and highly addictive and if this is your type of thing then you will find yourself flying through the pages, highly anticipating the next interaction with a wildly beating heart. I loved what this romance represented; it was all about becoming equals, a partnership that can last and can never be extinguished, a connection that can be felt across space, time and worlds.
“I see only night and smoke, dreams and glass, embers and wings. And I would not have you any other way.”
I highly recommend The Star-Touched Queen for fantasy fans and for suckers for magical retellings with their own unique twist. I would have loved to see more development between Maya and Amar, I feel like they would have been thick as thieves given the time and god knows I would love to see a mischievous Amar! Also the world building? Oh I wanted more and more, Chokshi has such a lyrical way of writing, I would compare it to Rutkoski and Ahdieh, it’s beautiful and has the ability to pull you into the story and allow you to experience everything first hand. I never wanted to leave the magical Night Bazaar with its lush wildlife and vivid scenery. I’m eagerly awaiting the companion novel as I can’t wait to revisit the dazzling world Chokski has created.
About the Author
Roshani Chokshi comes from a small town in Georgia where she collected a Southern accent, but does not use it unless under duress. She grew up in a blue house with a perpetually napping bear-dog. At Emory University, she dabbled with journalism, attended some classes in pajamas, forgot to buy winter boots and majored in 14th century British literature. She spent a year after graduation working and traveling and writing. After that, she started law school at the University of Georgia where she's learning a new kind of storytelling. More information on the author can be found at www.roshanichokshi.com.