Aurelia Barone, Jewel of Starry Stone, harbors no illusions about the purpose of her life as heir to the throne. But after two failed betrothals, she starts to feel like nothing more than a pawn being moved aimlessly about a game board.
Until the night she loses everything.
Kidnapped by a wise-cracking mercenary with more than one identity, Aurelia embarks on a mission across land and sea to avenge her father's death.
But an evil is rising from the ashes of memory. Insidious magic is stirring. The dregs of a once-powerful nation are thirsty for blood and revenge.
They seek to harness Aurelia. To tempt her. To manipulate her.
And if necessary, to destroy her.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
When her father, the king, is murdered, Aurelia finds herself kidnapped, and learning things about her family she never imagined could be true. This is a fascinating world with a good history, and it gripped my attention well. There are some fantastic action scenes throughout and plenty of dark magic to keep us fantasy enthusiasts begging for more. Aurelia is a strong female lead, though a bit naive about her uncle. Her attitudes do not come across as forced, and she turns out to be a typical fantasy female and is likeable enough despite some flaws. The only thing truly marring this otherwise excellent story is that the heroine is predictably stricken with Stockholm Syndrome. Why oh why do so many fantasy females fall in love with their captors? I'd rather she fell in love with a frog, or anything, anyone, anywhere. I wish authors would stop doing this. I knew it was coming, but I hoped beyond hope that Ms. Minyard would surprise me. Unfortunately, she did not. If it hadn't been for all the evil magic, I probably would have stopped reading. Now for the dark magic. My favorite character was the evil one, Marel, because he is so wonderfully evil. He summons dark spirits to help him gain the throne, and why not? I love a good villain, and he fit the bill nicely. I did not care for lead male Rycen. He is nothing special just your typical fantasy hot guy. There are a ton of named characters, some of them with very small parts, and I had trouble knowing who was who. That didn't detract from the story, and the plot, including a deep dark family secret, kept me reading despite the predictable brewing love plot. I'm not sure I'd read more of this series simply because I think it will turn into too much of a romance for my tastes. This first book, however, is excellent if you can ignore that one aspect. I was given a free copy in exchange for an honest review.
I received this book from Xpresso Book Tours in return for a fair and honest review. Stones and Finger Bones is a book of magic, deception, treachery and confusion. Aurelia is a princess, also known as a pawn, in the game that her father is playing. However, unknown to her father, someone else wants to play and isn't afraid of a small matter of murder getting in their way. Follow this with a whirlwind kidnapping, new people, who to trust, who not to, and you get a book that is guaranteed to keep you turning the pages as quickly as you can read them. This is a fast-paced, well-written book with a well-thought out plot with no holes. Expect the unexpected because that's what you'll get. The characters are devious and/or charming and you will either love or loathe them. Definitely recommended for all fans of Fantasy.