STORYLINE: Four siblings are in contention to be named as the successor to the throne of Nubia. The child who is most likely to be chosen does not want to rule. Princess Kandake sees herself as more suited to becoming Prime Warrior of Nubia. Her main desire in life is to be a warrior, for which she’s well trained. However, her grandmother’s ideas don’t exactly coincide with hers, as Kandake see it.
PLAYERS: Alara, Kandake and Natasen get along very well as siblings. They are distinct characters with unique roles within the story. Though Kandake is the youngest, her brothers bear her no ill will and are portrayed as mature and grounded individuals. Her sister, Tabiry, however, is spoiled and resentful of Kandake. The conflict between the sisters adds to the tension, and kept me guessing as to whether Tabiry would do anything to thwart her sister’s accession.
I LIKED: the fact that though there are a number of characters in the book – the siblings, friends, relatives, the king and his advisors - I was able to keep them all separate and accounted for as the story progressed.
The pacing is good and carried interesting plot twists, including a kidnapping. The setting is in keeping with what I expected of ancient Nubia and is convincing without being overdone. It’s obvious that the writer took special care not only with research, but in how the facts and details of life in that time is presented.
The writer gives each individual special talents and traits, so that by the end of the novel, I was convinced that ‘Great Mother’ made the right choice as to who should be the next ruler of Nubia.
I COULD HAVE LIVED WITHOUT: Princess Tabiry’s sniping at Kandake at every opportunity, but I also understand how her personality adds to the drama. She is what I’d expect of a princess – spoiled, petulant and strong-willed. Yet, the writer also shows how she will be useful to the kingdom when the new ruler is in place.
COVER NOTE: The cover does justice to the story as Kandake is warrior and hunter. Really like the backdrop and the lion that speaks to dominance and power.
OVERALL COMMENTS: Princess Kandake is unique in that the tales I’ve read that are set in Africa usually have to do with the slave trade and/or war. Although the book does have battle scenes and concerns about the Nubian kingdom coming under threat, the main body of the story had to do with Kandake’s growing into and accepting her role as the next ruler of Nubia.
The writer does an excellent job of placing me inside the Nubian kingdom and keeping me there for the duration of the story. Along with the descriptions of daily life, the food, language and writing style helped transport me to a time way in the past.
Princess Kandake: Warrior by Choice…Appointed to Rule is a historical YA novel and also suited for adult readers. I enjoyed the story and look forward to book two in the series.
SOURCE: I bought this book from Amazon.