Author: Amanda Bouchet
Series: Kingmaker Chronicles (Book 1)
Publication: Sourcebooks Casablanca (August 2, 2016)
Description: KINGDOMS WILL RISE AND FALL FOR HER...
BUT NOT IF SHE CAN HELP IT
Catalia "Cat" Fisa lives disguised as a soothsayer in a traveling circus. She is perfectly content avoiding the danger and destiny the Gods-and her homicidal mother-have saddled her with. That is, until Griffin, an ambitious warlord from the magic-deprived south, fixes her with his steely gaze and upsets her illusion of safety forever.
Griffin knows Cat is the Kingmaker, the woman who divines the truth through lies. He wants her as a powerful weapon for his newly conquered realm-until he realizes he wants her for much more than her magic. Cat fights him at every turn, but Griffin's fairness, loyalty, and smoldering advances make him increasingly hard to resist and leave her wondering if life really does have to be short, and lived alone.
My Thoughts: This was an amazing epic fantasy and wonderful start to a new trilogy. Cat has fled her home after a childhood of abuse and torture and has made a new life for herself in a circus. She is a soothsayer but she had picked up a lot of other skills too. When she catches the eye of Griffin who is Beta Sinta, second in command of Sinta, he first sees her for what she can do for his country.
Cat doesn't want to leave her hiding place in the circus but he forces her to go with him. In fact, he binds her to him with a magical rope that doesn't let her get more than four feet away from him. Griffin is part of the Hoi Polloi who gathered an army of those like him and overthrew the Magoi who were previously in charge of the country. Now he faces threats from both the other Magoi in the country and from outside forces who just assume that a Hoi Polloi ruler can't keep a country.
Cat, being out of her safe hiding place, has also drawn the attention of Andromeda, the Alpha Fisa, who wants to use her skills and control her. Cat gradually displays a number of magical skills besides her soothsaying. She is the legendary Kingmaker who can tell truth from lies. She can also make herself invisible, suck magic from other magic users and gain their powers briefly, and heal from major injuries.
The worlds are controlled by the gods of the Greek pantheon and Cat is a special favorite of Poseidon who is her father. Hades and even Zeus also take an interest in her. There is some sort of prophecy that she is trying to outrun. The gods have thrown her into the path of Griffin and together they are destined to bring great changes to their world. But Cat doesn't want to trust him because she knows that Alpha Fisa will kill anyone that Cat cares about. Griffin is just as stubborn as Cat and he is determined that they will have a future together.
I can't wait to read the next two books in this trilogy. I love Cat's snarky viewpoint and her character which is a finely balanced combination of fear and strength.
Gods! He's infuriating! "It'll be a cold day in the Underworld before I trust you." Or a moderately cool one. Well, a day with a stiff breeze anyway. Gah!I got this one in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.
I back up until my legs bump against my cot, oddly chilled after being so close to him.