PREVIOUSLY KNOWN AS "THE FORBIDDEN PRINCESS"
Book One Synopsis
In a world of magic, there are those that embrace it and those that vilify it. Cateline Bennett, a princess from the Kingdom of Axulran who has concealed her magic her entire life, is thrust into the world her lineage has spent centuries slandering. Forced to adapt to a new reality far from the royal palace, she must learn how to cooperate with peasants, how to survive a world full of magic, and how to fight in order to live.
As she traverses the Kingdom of Traburg, her newfound friends dig up a darker secret resting beneath their feet that threatens the world as they knew it. Together, they must discover a way to counter these threats; lest they, and all they know, will crumble to ruin.
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The core of this story is something that I both love to read and write. The gloss and glamor of a cheerful magical fantasy world with hints of a darker seedier underbelly just beneath the surface. It's the story of a quartet of friends that are trying to find out the mysteries of both magic and the foreboding magical academy that they're attending.
As a warning, there are multiple POVs and the MC is a bit arrogant/bratty, but in my opinion it works and works well.
This is my lowest score for two reasons. The pacing/scripting of scenes can be a bit jarring from time to time, and there are times when the images are described in such a way that they confuse the reader. That said, other than that it shifts between POVs smoothly, takes risks, and invests you in the world/characters smoothly.
There are noticeable mistakes but they aren't terribly frequent. Further, the author is making active efforts to clean them up. The mistakes don't hinder the reading and are largely cosmetic so I wouldn't worry about it too much.
At its heart, this story is a bit of a mystery. The main character lived a sheltered life and now we are exploring the world alongside her as she ventures into the wider world. The story does a good job of pairing the excietment, danger, and menace as the MC explores her magic and the potential political/social ramifications of her actions. The plot has multiple moving parts that are handled well, and of the multiple authority figures that the POV characters are choosing between, we still don't know who is good, who is bad, and who is grey. In short, it does a very good job of adding suspense and conflict to an almost slice of life scenario.
Outside of one sudden and abrupt introduction to a character that jarred me, I really like the writing of all of the characters. I got a feel for all of them, and generally, I found them interesting. Each and every one of them moves the plot forward and by chapter 20, I was invested in all of them.
This is a developing story about a princess and her cold awakening into the world outside of comfortable bower she knew.
There's intrigue about, but at its heart, this is shaping up to be a story of personal growth and mystery.
A strong point of the novel, the author has good description with poetic flourishes throughout, which draws the eye. Certain things are describe in great detail to add flesh to a scene.
Grammar is good, and does not ruin clarity.
The story thus far has our princess departing her home after a tragedy and heading to an academy fo magic. There's been intrigue thus far, but a small issue is that the pacing of the story can go from light-speed to a crawl very quickly, leaving some parts uneven.
There is an extended flashback sequence that follows a cliff hanger that maybe trying for some readers to get through if they're dying to know the cliffhanger's resolution.
Other than that, things are shaping up well.
Characterization for main protagonist is very well done, leaving you with a deep understanding of her as a character. You know her outlook, her flaws and how background as sheltered royalty helped to generate all of them.
Other characters are a bit thinner so far, but we are learning aboiut them over time.
This has the bones of a good story about magic and growing as a person under tough circumstances.
I think this is one to watch.
The first thing that struck me about "The Forbidden Princess" is the richly detailed writing which evokes the Middle Ages time period of the story. However, instead of bogging the story down, the descriptions push the story forward resulting in a fast paced fun read.
And the heroine, Princess Cateline, is no cardboard cutout. She can be petulant and naive, but possesses an inner strength that pushes her to be more than a mere trophy. We see her inner turmoil as she deals with the magical abilities she's hidden her entire life and learns that being royalty doesn't mean a whole lot in the real world.
And this Princess can bring it as we see in the very first chapter. Even by the fifth chapter, we're starting to see signs of upcoming events that will impact not only our heroine, but her kingdom as well. All this just whets my appetite for more.
The Forbidden Princess is still new, but it has a lot of potential; if you're looking for a new story to follow, you should give this story a chance.
The story so far has been pretty standard--it's about a princess who has magic powers and goes to a magical academy to hone her powers. A lot of stories on Royal Road go the joining-a-magical-school route, but this story has one up on the others by having a nice writing style.
I often complain about the flat and boring writing on Royal Road, but sometimes, as I noted with my review of As the Godking Wills, you actually get writers who give description with sensory detail and prose with personality. This story is along those same lines. Good writing goes a real long way in making any story enjoyable.
It's still too early to judge whether this will be a huge success story for fantasy on Royal Road, but I feel real optimistic about it for now.
Great grammar, the few things I've seen are those little typos that slip by even when the words have been read thrice over. Consistent characters dominate, and nice to see is that they act on their thoughts and beliefs.
Story is a little short at seven chapters, but holds promise as it continues. Style is probably the hardest review to give my thoughts on... there are a few places were the wordplay can be better, which keeps putting me off from being sucked in completely. However, those places are far, few, and honestly differ between readers, so I'm not dinging a point. And the little details of the world are gorgeous.
If you enjoy different races working together, seeing a character nurture their growth, and want to read about a strong female lead while having other fleshed-out characters, then read The Forbidden Princess.
This story is just phenomenal. It's the kind of fantasy novel that I look for. The descriptions of detailed but not too much. It still leaves something to the imagination, which I personally enjoy. I really love the development of Cateline, she's so young and naive yet she has a spark to her that's waiting to be seen. Especially the scene in the ball room with the elf. This author does an amazing job of hooking you right from the beginning. I've read work by Soundsofhysteria on another platform, but I'm so glad I found her here! I can't wait to read more. Excellent! Excellent work!
If you've read the first few chapters and are turned off by the princess' attitude, please read on a little bit further. She starts to open up in a really believable way.
As many have said, the author gives really good descriptions of things. It really helps with immersion, especially when the first few chapters are as fast-paced as they are.
The story differs a little the usual RR magic school story in that it's very character-forward. There's a lot of secrets to be uncovered and charcters to be explored, but the pacing can be a little weird sometimes.(Don't worry, I struggle with pacing too!)
I haven't seen any grammatical errors, though I've seen a lot of comments pointing out mistakes that have since been fixed. I like that the author is editing as she goes, though that might lower the grammar quality if you're reading as soon as the chapters release. However, I'm still giving a 5 because she's taking the time to fix everything for future readers. Plus, the quantity of mistakes noticed in the comments weren't enough to lower the score below a 4 anyways.
The characters are really this author's strong point. The princess is a brat and a bit naive, but that totally makes sense given the context. Plus, as I said before, she starts to change and her willingness to do so really endeared her to me. The other characters also have some good moments, mainly the male lead.
Overall, great story. Would definitely recommend! :)
I found it very fast paced and not one of the dragged out novels that hard to see any development. Yes the princess took out a vampire like it was fodder but hey magic am I right. Her views and likes are girly and as a man I have no understanding of the opposite sex a man truly never does but hey I find it insightful. All in all I enjoyed this novel.
Prestigious magical academy? Check
Pretentious-yet-somehow-loveable princess? Check
Well-thought-out magic that harkens back to traditional fantasy? You bet.
Mystery, intrigue, and suspense? It's got all of that in droves.
This story struck an emotional chord with me, mainly on account of the sheer sense of depth that supports the characters and the world. As with all well-executed stories, this depth isn't accomplished via exposition dumps and narration, but rather through something more subtle, something that's hard to name, yet helps make the world seem real, the characters believable, the dialogue natural. So let's jump right into it to see what makes this story tick.
Undoubtedly one of this fiction's strongest aspects. The rich and at times almost-poetic narration really adds to the quality of the world the author is creating. From the cold, snowy mountain regions of protagonist Cateline's homeland of Axulran, to showing us the details of her mysterious magic that seems to be in equal parts boon and curse, the style bolsters every aspect of this story, and is some of the strongest I've seen on the site.
Here again, we see masterful execution. The protagonist princess Cateline is anything but perfect, yet her pretentious mannerisms are entirely believable given her royal background, and every now and then we see glimpses into her character hinting that she is somethign more. I am excited at the character development we'll undoubtedly see with her, but I really like her already!
The side characters, specifically Aiora and Leolina, are similarly well-done, with the former building up to be a close friend-and-mentor(though with her own mysteries and issues), and the latter being a true enigma thus far. What are her motivations? Is she a friend or a villain? Or both? We've yet to fully understand her, and I can't wait to unravel more of her background!
Perfect. Sentence construction is well-done, the words flow from one paragraph to another, and the author clearly has an excellent command of the English language.
The story thus far has been engaging, with our Princess gradually discovering her unique - and oftentimes frightening - powers in an environment filled with agenda and intrigue. That said, it still feels like early days yet. We learn more and more about the mysteries surrounding Lighthelm with each chapter, but we've yet to get to the real meat of the story. It does seem to be building up to something great though, so I've no doubt that we're in for quite the ride!
In summary, if you're looking for a rich and compelling western-style fantasy with a darker, more mature twist than normal, I think you've just found your story. The characters, grammar, and style alone make this more than worth your time, and when you add the story on top, you end up with something really special.
Overall: Cateline, a trouble princess, finds herself faced with the prospect of suitors and imminent marriage. But in a kingdom where elves have been all but massacred by the dominating human monarchy, being a princess (even one with forbidden powers) is not as easy as it seems. Whether its facing suitors or assassins or a new school of mixed-race students, Cateline’s journey will be far from easy. But with a bit of luck, some new companions, and of course some magic, Cateline’s real journey to becoming an Ice Witch will now begin.
The writer’s description of magic is honestly what I love most about this story. So if you love reading about magic and the potential it has to change the world, this book is definitely worth trying out.
Style: The writer is still in the first draft phases so a couple bumpy word choices or phrases may have given me pause. Also the shifts from present to past. But it wasn’t enough to distract my enjoyment of the overall story.
Story: If there was one specific spot in the story that made me befuddled it was Cateline’s parents. I felt like their reaction, decisions, and overall intelligence was a bit shallow. They were so “papercut out” I wondered how the kingdom even survived under their rule, let alone how they survived not being assassinated up to this point.
Grammar: Other than tense, which I put under style, no problems here. Kudos.
This is a Fantasy-Magic worth checking out. There is more than one character to fall in love with as the story progresses and the potential of this magic school and its students more than excites me. So give it a shot and see what you think 😊