Title: Forest Born
Author: Shannon Hale
Published: September 2009
Synopsis from goodreads:Rin is sure that something is wrong with her…something really bad. Something that is keeping her from feeling at home in the Forest homestead where she’s lived all her life. Something that is keeping her from trusting herself with anyone at all. When her brother Razo returns from the city for a visit, she accompanies him to the palace, hoping that she can find peace away from home. But war has come to Bayern again, and Rin is compelled to join the queen and her closest allies—magical girls Rin thinks of as the Fire Sisters—as they venture into the Forest toward Kel, the land where someone seems to want them all dead. Many beloved Bayern characters reappear in this story, but it is Rin’s own journey of discovering how to balance the good and the bad in herself that drives this compelling adventure.
Once again, Newbery Honor-winning author Shannon Hale brings readers to a world where great friendships, unexpected plot twists, and a little dose of magic make for incredible storytelling.
I am a huge fan of Shannon Hale. The Goose Girl is probably one of my all time favorite books. Sadly, this one didn't measure up. I love the world that The Books of Bayern are set in, and I love the characters but this one just didn't do it for me.
The main thing was that I really didn't feel connected to Rin, the main character. Not like the other characters in the books. A lot of her thoughts were confusing, and I was aggravated by her sometimes. I did like how Hale kept the returning characters true to their respective books. They didn't go through any dramatic personality changes or anything, which I liked.
I really liked the writing. I was sucked into the story, and could see everything happening. The magical aspect is great too, and also original. The plot fell a bit flat for me also, and moved rather slow, which I didn't really like. The end left me wanting more as well, and not in the good way, in the "there's something missing here" way. But that might just be me.
I still love Shannon Hale, and I still love the Bayern books, I just didn't love this book. I think part of it is because of my high expectations.
Overall: 42/50 B