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Book Review of The Hero and the Crown (Damar, Bk 2)

The Hero and the Crown (Damar, Bk 2)
reviewed on + 52 more book reviews

After I finished reading this I discovered that I had read it previously 16 years ago. I read the entire book this time without the slightest inkling that I had read it before. Obviously it didn't make much of an impression on me last time--although I guess enough of an impression to make me want to keep it with me for the past 16 years.

At any rate, this time it definitely did leave an impression. I loved the first half of this book. This won the Newbery Medal in 1985, but if I hadn't known better, I wouldn't have guessed that this book is targeted for younger audiences. This is the story of a king's only child, Aerin, a daughter from his second marriage. Rumor has it that his second wife was a witch who ensorceled the king into loving her so that she could bear his heir and take over his kingdom, but then died of despair when she gave birth to a daughter instead of a son. Aerin grows up in a court that never quite accepts her, knowing that her destiny lies elsewhere. This is the story of how she discovers exactly where her destiny lies.

Aerin's character comes as alive and as real as any I've read. The author pulled me into the story and had me caring a great deal for what was going to happen to Aerin. I didn't want to put this down.

But about halfway through the novel, things change a bit. All of the main battle scenes were ethereal and ambiguous and I didn't enjoy those parts. I felt like I was just slogging through those pages waiting for the story to rematerialize and get back on track. But once it did, the story picked right back up again. If it wasn't for these parts I would've given this 5 out of 5 stars.