Thursday, July 18, 2013

YA Review- Aurelia

(Cover from author's website)

Book: Aurelia (Aurelia Book One)
Author: Anne Osterlund
Genre: Fantasy/Romance/Mystery
Published: Penguin 2008
Medium Read In: Paperback
Pages: 246

Rating (Scaled 1-10): 7.5

Why I'm Reading It: I fell in love with this book the moment I saw it. The cover is absolutely stunning, and slightly reminiscent of Girl with the Pearl Earring, or at least I think so. The mask, the curly font of the title, the title itself ("Aurelia" is a gorgeous name!)- I absolutely fell in love with the book from the outside, and knew I had to read what was inside.

Summary: Someone is attempting to assassinate Princess Aurelia, the heir to throne of Tyralt, and so her father brings in the son of his former spy, Robert Vantauge. Robert is supposed to keep Aurelia from finding out about the murder attempts, but she finds out, and they both set out to find the would-be murderer before it's too late, and the villain succeeds.

Review: Luckily, this was not a case of "Book is horrible, but I loved the cover." Neither was it a "I fell in love with this book" kind of case. This book is a decent read, but I was very sad to realize that it was more the kind of book twelve or thirteen-year-old me would have been obsessed with, instead of a book directed at the older set of the YA audience.

Besides that small smidgen, I still highly enjoyed reading Aurelia. Since it was geared towards a younger audience, I did breeze through it rather quickly. I will say, however, that the "mystery" side of the the novel did catch me for a loop. I was pleasantly surprised by the ending, especially the growth in Aurelia as a character.

One of the best parts about this book is probably how low-key the romance aspect of it was. The romance slowly blossomed between Aurelia and Robert, however it wasn't the main focus of the novel as it is so often with YA books today. It promised a mystery/fantasy, and that was what it gave. It didn't have a romance with a pathetic mystery wrapped around it- instead, Aurelia gave us a novel in stride, and I highly appreciate and respect Ms. Osterlund for it.

The novel left me happy after I was reading it, and it was definitely a book I would recommend for most young readers. I had a hard time finding decent fantasy when I was younger- that's why I often reread my Tamora Pierce collection and the few fantasy novels that I had for my age group, and why I started to read Tolkien young. For any youngster who is looking for areas in the fantasy department, they should definitely check out Aurelia.


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