Title: The Heart of Stars
Author: Kate Forsyth
First published January 1, 2006
448 pages, Paperback
ISBN: 9780451461445 (ISBN10: 0451461444)
In the fantastical land of Aran, a nefarious necromancer has taken the beloved princess Olywynne and her twin brother captive. His sinister plan is to spill their blood and bring his own family back to life.
As chaos ensues throughout the kingdom, Rhiannon and her trusty winged mare are the only hope for Olywynne’s rescue. However, there’s a catch.
Olywynne is Rhiannon’s arch-nemesis, and the very thought of rescuing her makes Rhiannon cringe. To make matters worse, in her quest to save the princess, Rhiannon risks losing everything she holds dear, including her chance at love with the apprentice-witch Lewen.
Will she be able to put her personal feelings aside to save the kingdom, or will she let her emotions get the best of her?
About the Author
At age seven, Kate Forsyth wrote her first book, and now she’s a prolific writer with 40 books under her belt for both adults and children. Her works for grown-ups comprise ‘Beauty in Thorns,’ which tells the love story that inspired a famous painting of ‘Sleeping Beauty.’ She also wrote ‘The Beast’s Garden,’ a retelling of ‘Beauty and the Beast’ based on the Grimm version that happens during the German underground resistance to Hitler in WWII.
‘The Wild Girl’ is a novel about the love story of Wilhelm Grimm and Dortchen Wild, the young woman who shared many of the world’s most popular fairy tales with him. ‘Bitter Greens’ is a retelling of the Rapunzel fairytale, and she also wrote the famed fantasy series ‘Witches of Eileanan.’ Meanwhile, her children’s books include ‘The Impossible Quest,’ ‘The Gypsy Crown,’ ‘The Puzzle Ring,’ and ‘The Starkin Crown.’
Kate has an unmatched academic background. She holds a doctorate in fairytale studies, a Masters of Creative Writing, and a Bachelor of Arts in Literature.
She’s also an accredited master storyteller.
Book Review: The Heart of Stars by Kate Forsyth
Kate Forsyth is a renowned Australian author of fantasy, historical fiction, and children’s books. The Heart of Stars is a captivating novel that was first published on January 1, 2006.
The book is a blend of historical and fantasy genres, with a unique style and theme that sets it apart from other books in the same category.
The Heart of Stars is set in the 15th century in the Kingdom of Hungary, where the Ottoman Turks are threatening to invade. The story follows the journey of a young girl named Anna, who is sent to live with her wealthy and powerful uncle, the Count of Zalán.
Anna is a gifted mathematician and astronomer who is fascinated by the stars and the secrets they hold. She quickly becomes embroiled in a dangerous plot to save the kingdom from the Turks, using her knowledge of the stars to predict the enemy’s movements and devise a plan of attack.
The book is rich in historical and cultural significance, as it explores the complex political and social tensions of the time, including religion, gender roles, and class divisions. Forsyth’s meticulous research and attention to detail bring the setting and characters to life, immersing the reader in a world of intrigue, betrayal, and adventure.
Forsyth’s writing is of high quality, with a lyrical prose that captures the beauty and mystery of the stars. The plot is well-structured, with a steady pace that keeps the reader engaged and invested in the characters’ fates.
The characters themselves are well-developed, with complex personalities and motivations that make them feel authentic and relatable.
One of the book’s strengths is its portrayal of women in a patriarchal society, as Anna and other female characters challenge traditional gender roles and expectations. The book also touches on themes of love, sacrifice, and the power of knowledge, making it a thought-provoking and emotionally resonant read.
However, the book’s main weakness is its predictability, as the plot follows a familiar formula of a young hero/heroine rising to the challenge and saving the day. Additionally, some readers may find the book’s blend of historical and fantasy genres to be jarring or confusing.
Overall, The Heart of Stars is a well-crafted and engaging novel that will appeal to fans of historical fiction and fantasy. It is a testament to Forsyth’s skill as a writer and her ability to weave together history, fantasy, and social commentary into a cohesive and compelling narrative.
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars.