Friday, October 19, 2012
The Puppet Queen: A Tale of Sleeping Beauty by Mira Zamin
Author: Mira Zamin
Published- June 20th 2012
Twin sisters Selene and Aurelia live a life filled with riches and freedom. Their parents are of a noble status so that makes them have a noble status too which gains them a luxurious carefree life. Selene lives her life out on the woods where she spends all day looking for adventure. Her sister is the calmer of the too who likes to spend her days on a bed with a book. Their both contrasting ways of life has nothing to do with how much they love being with each other. That is until they find out about a curse set upon one of them and that knowledge with change them forever.
When Selene was born it was a thunderous day and when she breathed air a tree was struck down by a lightning. That tree has very great significance to the Pari, a magical faerie people, who were not quite so happy with what Selene had done. A Pari came to the twin's parents and cursed the only sister around, Aurelia, while Selene was sick and resting in her nursery. The curse was originally for the death of the sister at the age of 18 but instead with the help of a magician the curse turned into a sleeping spell of all the townspeople in her home. Selene could not bear living with the realization of what she had done so she runs away and when her sister's at the right age the town goes to sleep yet she escapes the slumber. She will do anything to make things right but in doing so she must face many struggles and obstacles to find her sister's one true love who's kiss will bring about the end of her slumber and Selene's guilt.
Selene is pretty in pink on this cover. The book's all about her so it makes sense to have her on there than her sister who has blond hair. Selene feels guilty for what her birth caused her sister. When the secret her parents had been keeping comes out it seems like everyone resents her for being born so she ends up running away from her shame. I could see no rhyme or reason how she could possibly think this is all her fault. She was born when lightning stroked a tree. She has no magical powers or is secretly evil. How on earth anyone would blame her is beyond me.
Selene is a bit of a wild child while her sister is this quiet graceful girl. I guess since she thought Aurelia was the good child (even though she never did anything wrong but stay up late) so she felt guilty for what she'd done to her. Not only that but she avoided being cursed when she was a baby and then when she ran away she avoided the curse all together! You might be thinking how lucky she is right now and she is BUT that's where her luck stops for her. There's this guy, Gwydion, who was all nice to her when she still hadn't run away and even proposed. He decides to take a very different approach when he finds her two years later. A nasty, evil approach that will make you hate him throughout the book. I cannot express enough of how much I hate this guy. And then Selene feels conflicted over him. NO! He's not right for you or anyone. Plain and simple.
So why the Puppet Queen? The current Queen is dying so there must be a choice on a new queen. With her mother and siblings asleep she can petition to become queen. She makes allies but mostly enemies in her quest to become Queen. Gwydion forces her to do this but if she does become queen she will have more resources to help save her family from the sleeping curse so she is doing it for herself. I left the book for a couple of days and all of a sudden she became this confident woman. She was no longer this carefree girl running in the woods and I wondered what happened? It was such a stark difference. But going through what she had to go through I get it now. It doesn't mean I have to like it. At times I grew annoyed with her "I'm better than you attitude". I think it was just the way the book was written. The time that this book takes place is a time where she would have spoken the way that she did like she was upper class from the Shakespeare era.
The book was all about Selene and not the real Sleeping Beauty which gave the book an advantage and disadvantage. Although the book was unique in creating this whole new way of looking at a classic tale you could also say that the book should have been written more on the actual subject (person) the book was about. It all depends on your preference. I personally was conflicted. Sometimes I enjoyed having the story told through the sister of Sleeping Beauty but other times I wanted Sleeping Beauty to not just be someone who has no other dimension to her character than sleeping all day.
Selene makes a choice towards the end of the book that I grew passionate about. I wanted to find a way to communicate with the author to ask her why she would do such a thing but couldn't find a way. I wasn't necessarily angry with the author but I wanted to find out her way of thinking when she wrote this particular section of the book. Let's just say it'll be a big surprise to you that will get your emotions riled up. The book was ridiculously well written and it brought out emotion in me even if times those emotions weren't favored toward the main character. It gnawed at my heart and I loved that this book could do this to me. It means it was a great read. The author might not best play to what you might feel was right or the best choice in a situation but she was able to make a great connection with me as a reader.