If I am going to take a trip down memory lane, this quartet is near and dear to my heart. I fell in love with the far from perfect Alanna, the girl who wants to be a knight. Red haired, violet eyed, stubborn, and moody, Alanna disguises herself as a boy and tries for her shield. Her adventures and coming of age story have been read so often, I nearly have the first two books memorized.
I prefer the first two books in the series. None of the books are slouches, but the plot shifts after the second book and it is not as interesting to me. I enjoyed the palace, and while Alanna’s adventures are always entertaining, they don’t have the same tension as the first two books did for me. Partially because it split up the group of characters of which I am incredibly fond. All the character from hero’s to villains are well developed, and after falling in love with a prince and a rogue, their sudden absence from the main narrative saddens me a little.
I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a strong female character, and tactful accurate handling of the trials and tribulations of accepting yourself for who you are. Action, adventure, magic and mystery this series has it all and Alanna deals with it all.