Monday, November 5, 2012

Quintana of Charyn Review + Giveaway

Quintana Blog Tour

Today is my stop on the official blog tour!
Thanks to 132 minutes for organizing this event.

Quintana of Charyn
by Melina Marchetta 

Read: October 11-13, 2012
Published: September 26, 2012 by Viking Australia 
Source: Purchase
Category: High Fantasy
Series: Book 3 Lumatere Chronicles

Separated from the girl he loves and has sworn to protect, Froi must travel through Charyn to search for Quintana, the mother of Charyn's unborn king, and protect her against those who will do anything to gain power. But what happens when loyalty to family and country conflict? When the forces marshalled in Charyn's war gather and threaten to involve the whole of the land, including Lumatere, only Froi can set things right, with the help of those he loves. (from Goodreads)

Quintana of Charyn is the type of book that I seize up trying to review. It is so vast and beautiful and heartbreaking that I don't know how to put it into words. Instead of trying and failing to capture everything, I wanted to talk about one thing that Melina Marchetta excels at: People. 

Quintana of Charyn is about characters and relationships. Between parents and children and lovers and brothers and kings and queens and even kingdoms. What makes all of Melina Marchetta's books amazing is the people in them - the absolute realness and beauty of her characters, who stand out because they are complicated and not perfect. But she doesn't just create individuals. It's when they interact with each other that Marchetta's magic happens. 
She builds families that connect in surprisingly intricate ways, even when they are not related at all. 

I fell in love with so many people in this book. Two entire nations in fact. And I felt their pain. There is so much sadness and heartbreak in these pages. But also great love and hope and wonder. I don't know how Marchetta does it again and again, but when I finished this series, I felt like I personally knew these characters. Every one of them has a story to tell. And tell it they do. 

I came up with a list of 30 people in Lumatere and Charyn who stole my heart in big and small ways. Some of them are major players, some are minor. But even the minor ones are capable of big things and huge growth. What is remarkable about this series is that I could tell you something significant about every one of these 30 people - who they are, what they've done and whether I could trust them or not. What is even more remarkable is that I had to cut this list down to 30. There are so many more that I don't name

Finnikin. Isaboe. Sir Topher. The Priestking. Lord August. Lady Abian. Celie. Beatriss. Vestie. Trevanion. Perri. Tesadora. Lucian. Phaedra. Jory. Yata. Rafuel. Quintana. Froi. Gargarin. Lirah. Arjuro. De Lacey. Grigio. Trippadeaux. Perabo. Scarpo. Olivier. Fekra. Dorcas. 

These people were beaten, tortured, raped, sacrificed, betrayed. They cried and bled and dared to hope. They are assassins, mothers, lovers, leaders, builders, fighters, healers and survivors. But despite all these things that they are, none of them would have been the same without their relationships with each other. I wanted to climb inside them and never let go.

Among these 30 people are six whose stories I came to know closely. Whose journeys have so completely woven themselves through the trilogy and into my heart that it was difficult to say goodbye to them at the end of the book. 

These six stories are about the love between a Queen and her Consort.
About a leader struggling to learn what it means not only to lead but to be good at it. 
About the sacrifices made by an unhappy bride.
About a girl who will do anything to survive.
And about the boy who will do everything to find her. 

And of those six it is Quintana and Froi whose journeys I've found to be the most heartbreaking and also breathtaking. From the first book to the last, Froi changes the most of almost any character that I have ever read about. A transformation that you must not miss. And Quintana is one of (if not) the craziest heroines that I have ever encountered. And yet, her choices make perfect sense. If you have not read this series and experienced these people, you are missing out. Pick it up now. 

Quintana of Charyn is the third and finale book in the Lumatere Chronicles that began with Finnikin of the Rock and Froi of the Exiles. This series is a masterpiece, and reading it felt like watching a beautiful tapestry being stitched one thread at a time. It's not until it is complete that you can see the vastness of it. How all the individual parts fit together. I love LOVE when pieces from earlier books finally make sense. When redemption is found after so much wanting. Finally seeing the individual thread of each person put together, takes my breath away.  

Cliffhanger Scale: The series is complete! But I'm hoping there will be more stories to come from minor characters, like Lady Celie. Have you read her short mystery?
Love Triangle Factor: Mild (This is hard to gage with so many characters, but I love that Marchetta's characters tend to mate for life.)

Rating: 5 stars

Don't miss a stop on the Quintana of Charyn blog tour! 
CLICK HERE for the entire tour schedule.

Enter to WIN a complete set of the Lumatere Chronicles" rel="nofollow">a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway Policies:
  1. Giveaway ends November 30.
  3. Entrants must be 13 years old to enter.
  4. Hosts will not be responsible for lost or damage of goods while in shipment. 
  5. Winner will be notified via email and will have 24 hours to reply or another will be drawn. 


  1. Erhmahgerd! The entire Lumatere trilogy? And opens internationally? What a wonderful giveaway.

    It's a shame for me as someone who lives in Aus for not having read any of Melina's books. *sobs*

    1. You need to fix this STAT!

      I hope you win these and then you'll have no excuse ;). (This is a blog tour giveaway, I can't take credit for it, unfortunately)

  2. Yay! Best. Review. Ever!!! Seriously, this one is my fave of all of yours, Lauren! LOVE your list of 30 people! And how you summed it all up so beautifully:

    It's not until it is complete that you can see the vastness of it. How all the individual parts fit together. I love LOVE when pieces from earlier books finally make sense. When redemption is found after so much wanting. Finally seeing the individual thread of each person put together, takes my breath away."

    YES! THAT. I couldn't have said it better myself! Amazing review for such an amazing series:) Can't wait for my stop on the US tour next year:)

    1. Thanks, Heather. That means a lot! I so love that we enjoy many of the same books, and it's even better when we read them together. This one one of the series that I'm so very thankful that we share. And I can't wait for your review either - though I do have a lonnngggg time to be patient!

  3. Wonderful review! You totally nailed it--Marchetta writes such amazing characters that by the end of it, it feels like they're your family. Fingers crossed for more short stories! And I feel like I've read somewhere that she's interested by the heir to Yutlind Sud, so who knows?

    1. I love what you said about MM's characters becoming family. I definitely felt that.

      Oh I would love a story about the Yutlind Sud heir! He was mentioned a few times in this book and I've wondered what became of him. I did read an interview where she was planning more Lady Celie stories, and I hope we get other characters as well.

  4. I love everything Melina Marchetta writes! Hoping to have some time during the holidays to read Froi and then I can get to Quintana!
    Great review. Crossing my fingers!

    1. I agree. She's one of those authors where you can't go wrong with ANYTHING they write. I hope you get to Froi and Quintana soon too. They really are fantastic.

  5. Lauren, I knew even before I started reading your review that it would be wonderful, but I had no idea that it would be a masterpiece. Seriously. This is just...beautiful. There are no other words to describe your review. You put everything I felt about this book into such a concise, well-written, and simply gorgeous review. I love SO many reviews on this blog, but I think this one trumps them all. Amazing job, Lauren. You've truly done this book justice - and I think that's one of the hardest things to do when it comes to Melina Marchetta. I love it!<33

    1. Wow. Thank you so much for that comment! You've made me blush. I think that MM's books are so amazing that they inspire me to work hard on what I say about them.

  6. I just finished reading Finnikin of the Rock and I absolutely loved it. I can't wait to read the other two. I already love all of the characters and feel as if I have been part of their incredible journey.

    1. Yes! So true about how much these stories draw you in. I think Froi is my favorite of the series, and you can tell I loved this one as well. I hope you get to them soon!

  7. Beautiful review, Lauren. I'm so so glad you loved this one. This series is just... ah, so good.

    And yes, more stories about Celie. <3 :)

    1. I know! It's hard to put how I feel about this book into words. I think I could spend forever exploring Skuldenore.

  8. Good gracious, gal. This is so beautifully written I'm all up in tears. I'm SO EXCITED to read this series, but even more after reading this review because I didn't realize all of the stuff you mentioned happened in the books. Honestly, I just knew Marchetta is amazing and I wanted to read them. And then you recommended them highly and I trust you. But this sounds like an Asheley series if I've ever heard one.

    So excellent, this review. I can tell HOW MUCH you love these books.

    The only MM book I've read thus far is Jellicoe Road, but I am working on fixing that problem! When I went to the library a couple of days ago, all of her books were checked out! Which was not-great for me, but YAY for everyone reading them, right?

    1. Oh goodness, if there ever was an Asheley series, THIS IS IT!! I can't tell you how excited I am for you to experience it.

  9. Love your review! The characters are definitely one of the top reasons I love this series. Melina Marchetta is just wonderful at creating characters and relationships that feel so real and ones that you can't help but to root for passionately. She really has some of the best characters out there, and I can't get enough of them!


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