graceling – no dictionary results
At first I found it strange for Prince Greening (affectionately called Prince Po) to behave the way he did when Katsa* and company went back for him at his hiding and recovery place at the base of the mountains of Monsea. With his amazing grace, or (in this particular case, I would think it’s more appropriate to say) amazing powers, why would physical blindness affect him that much? If I had his grace**, I would have no need for eyes.
Then it begins to unfold. The Lienid kind, and Prince Po in particular, is the kind who believes that beauty is a joy to behold forever; who reveres nature’s beauty – the golden sunset, the raging storm, the cold severity of winter – and most especially, the beauty of the woman she adores. He does have a gift to sense everything around him but apparently it lacks color. He probably senses things better than a bat does, but they both can’t see color now.
And perhaps what he is most afraid of is the eventual realization by everyone that he is blind and concomitantly the anger of waking to the fact that they were victims of a lie; of being fooled into believing what he projected to everyone his grace to be.
Luckily, he experiences that ‘aha moment’ just in time. And he has Katsa to help him hide yet another lie – to make everyone believe he is not actually blind. Whew, it’s good to know though that these lies bring only good for everyone, in contrast to the deceptions of Leck that bring only pain for his victims.
I find Kristin Cashore’s ‘Graceling’ more captivating than ‘Fire‘. I read ‘Fire’ in stops and starts mainly because it did not keep me from yielding to so many distractions such as the need to check my facebook account, to read my e-mails, read my friends’ blogs, the lure of joining my kids as they cavorted outside in the rain, shoot pictures of the moon, etc.
With ‘Graceling’, I was somehow able to resist most of these distractions and thus completed reading the book earlier. For once, I agree with the praises at its back cover about not being able to put it down. ‘Fire’ may however have helped prep me up so that I was able now to immerse fully in ‘Graceling’. Had I read Graceling first prior to Fire, I wonder if the experience would have worked similarly.
I also like the graceling Katsa more than the monster Fire. Makes me wonder if I’m the kind who likes violence more than diplomacy. I like the fact though that Katsa chosed to temper her violent power and asserted her independence – disobeying her king who sees her only as a pawn to implement his selfish affairs.
Hadn’t it been for the presence of King Leck (who apparently is the adult version of the young Leck in ‘Fire’), I would have thought that Katsa is a reincarnation of Fire. But inspite the dazzling beauty of Fire, I find Katsa sexier and more appealing. Prince Po definitely is the luckiest guy in the Seven Kingdoms for having Katsa.
Now, this is one story I absolutely would expect to watch a movier version of. Move over Bella, here comes Katsa.
**Grace: extra-ordinary gift or power that gracelings have. Gracelings are identified by their mismatched colored eyes.