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The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi
- Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin < Macmillan
- Genre: Fantasy < Retellings
- Audience: Young Adult
- Pages: 342 (hardcover)
Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of death and destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father’s kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran’s queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar’s wife, she finds something else entirely: Compassion. Protection. Desire… But Akaran has its own secrets—thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unravel an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most…including herself.
“A memory is a fine legacy to leave behind.“the star-touched queen
I think it’s about time I throw in the towel on Roshani Chokshi and come to terms with the fact that I just don’t like her writing style.
While I did end up making it through The Star-Touched Queen with significantly less painful torture and boredom than The Gilded Wolves, I still didn’t like it.
For a fantasy romance retelling, I found it slow and lacking in chemistry and imagination.
The romance was so instant (ahh, insta-love, my nemesis) and unbelievably cringe-worthy from the start. There was no suspense, no tensions, no chemistry, or mystery. There are intense (and awkward) proclamations made by Amar from the get-go, and I found myself annoyed at the entire relationship between him and our main character, Maya.
Characters were underdeveloped, and as to side characters? Practically nonexistent.
Our main character Maya, is so underdeveloped, with no defining characteristics of her own. She could literally be swapped with just about anyone else and I wouldn’t know that the character was any different. Same with Amar, aside from his strangely fast developing and undying love for Maya for literally no reason, he has absolutely nothing else to his character.
And as for side characters, where are they, really? There seems to be no one else that Chokshi seems concerned with adding to the story, other than the one character whose name starts with a “G”–see, I’ve already forgotten because the only thing memorable about him is he was extremely talkative and went on about weird, random interviews he’s conducted in the past??
The plot seemed far fetched. The plot and the lack of worldbuilding as the story drew on effectively took me out of the story.
It was at the 30% mark or so of the novel when I realized we wouldn’t be getting any characterization, the romance was too fast and dramatic to be believed, and the world building was not fleshed out and wouldn’t be built upon any further. It was around the 65% mark when things actually started progressing and happening in the plot, and instead of pulling me in, took me completely out. The plot events were out of nowhere, were not compelling in the slightest, and without the characters, romance, or world pulling me in from the start (the lack of them primarily), I just didn’t care what the main mystery was or what was going to happen at that point.
At least, though reading The Star-Touched Queen, I have come out of this experience learning something: Roshani Chokshi and her writing style are not for me, and I can Rest In Peace knowing I no longer have to give her future releases a fighting chance.
TROPES AND TRIGGER WARNINGS FEATURED
- Royal love interest
- Single POV, first person
- Mystery to solve
The Star-Touched QueenThe Star-Touched Queen
similar titles to THE STAR-TOUCHED QUEEN
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Let’s Chat in the Comments!
What are some of your favorite fantasy retellings? What mythology, folklore, ballads, or specific lore of certain cultures would you like to see more of? What is a story you would love a retelling of?