A Crown of Wishes by Roshani Chokshi
The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi won my best debut of 2017 when I first started doing Calendar Girls this year (check out the epic update here and seriously come join us) for a very good reason – it had interesting characters, a fascinating storyline, and beautiful, beautiful prose. Chokshi’s prose is full of lyrical lines, stunning imagery, and yes, quotes that are now taking up a good deal of space in my Goodreads quote section. When I heard about the next book in the series, I was pumped because it sounded even cooler than the first and I love a good sassy dual lead – and trust me, I was given exactly that.
Once Upon a Time…
An ancient mystery. An unlikely union. For one young princess in a state of peril, a dangerous wish could be the only answer…
She is the princess of Bharata—captured by her kingdom’s enemies, a prisoner of war. Now that she faces a future of exile and scorn, Gauri has nothing left to lose. But should she trust Vikram, the notoriously cunning prince of a neighboring land? He promises her freedom in exchange for her battle prowess. Together they can team up and win the Tournament of Wishes, a competition held in a mythical city where the Lord of Wealth promises a wish to the victor. It seems like a foolproof plan—until Gauri and Vikram arrive at the tournament and find that danger takes on new shapes: poisonous courtesans, mischievous story birds, a feast of fears, and twisted fairy revels. New trials will test their devotion, strength, and wits. But what Gauri and Vikram will soon discover is that there’s nothing more dangerous than what they most desire.
*For me, you could definitely read this as a standalone. It was nice to have a knowledge from the first book, but it wasn’t really necessary.*
So literally from the first page, I was fangirling so hard over the lines that Chokshi wrote. If I did tabs for my reading, I would have used up a whole container of them and probably had to go out and buy more. Her writing is beautiful, and I totally thought she couldn’t outdo herself or even live up to her first book – yet again, she proved me wrong and I loved every delicious sentence she created – and seriously, they were delicious.
Gauri and Vikram were amazing leads. Gauri was so fierce and strong, and I couldn’t help but root for her. She was so independent, and she displays so much female empowerment. She’s such a warrior princess, and I loved reading her story.
Vikram was amazing as well. Truthfully, I kind of expected him to be the stereotypical prince when he first walked onto the page: macho, trying to save the damsel in distress, etc. Instead, it was actually Gauri saving his butt most of the time, and that was fabulous. His humor was so entertaining, and he had his own flaws that once again, had me rooting so hard for him and Gauri.
The romance between them was amazing. I love me a good banter, and their banter was sooooo good. Ugh, there were a lot of heart eyes going on here. (Not a spoiler but kind a spoiler: that ending had me in squeals – it was embarrassing but I’m a Book Princess – it was bound to happen eventually)
Also, the storyline was so interesting. All of the new characters that were complex and entertaining. The new mythology and folktales were beautiful and lush and oh so fascinating. This wasn’t quite a tournament so much in the way I was expecting, but it was an adventure and kept me enthralled for all.
This book was a dazzling ride. I loved the new characters, and the romance was swoony and banter-rific (yes, that hurt my soul as well – never saying that again). The plot was engrossing and captivating, and Chokshi’s writing is as stunning as always. She’s easily becoming an auto buy for me, and I can’t wait to see what she’s coming out with next!
Five stars and a Tiana rating because Gauri is as hard working and fierce as Tiana and this book did slightly miss the favorites spot by a smidgen.
Check it out:
What do you think? How do you feel about lyrical prose? Have you read any of these books? How much do you like books with quotable lines? Let’s discuss in the comments below!