When I found out Kristin Cashore was releasing another book in the world of the Graceling series I was ecstatic – it was one of my favourite series as a teen, with Fire still being on my all time faves list. So, what did I think of Winterkeep? Well, I read all 500 pages in one sitting, that’s what.
Star rating: 5 stars
Winterkeep expands the universe the series is set in, through new lands to explore and a mix of new and old characters. We are re-united with Queen Bitterblue (5 years after Bitterblue the book ended) and Giddon, and introduced to Lovisa, a teen from Winterkeep.
After two of her men go missing, Bitterblue and Giddon head to Winterkeep for the first time – a nation that has advanced technology beyond their wildest dreams. What happened to her men? What can she learn? Will she see her ex-lover Katu over there since he hasn’t been in touch?
Lovisa is a new character – she’s studying politics at Winterkeep’s school being the daughter of two prominent politicians, uniquely from opposing political parties. I enjoyed Lovisa’s character, but I won’t say too much because of spoilers.
My absolute favourite part of this book was its love of animals and the environment. There are telepathic foxes (one even gets a point of view), seal like creatures called silbercows that can communicate through images, cats, poodles and farm animals. I loved it, it was so comforting and made me happy cry in places.
So while I may have not had the same attachment to the characters as I did in Graceling and Fire before this, I loved the world-building so much. Overall, this is such a great follow up in one of my favourite series (thank you Kristin!)