The Winner's Curse (The Winner's Trilogy #1) by Marie Rutkoski
Publication date: 4 March 2014 by Farrar Straus Giroux
ISBN 10/13: 0374384681 | 9780374384685
Category: Young Adult Fantasy
Keywords: Fantasy, Slavery, Ownership, Rebellion
Format: Hardcover, ebook, audiobook
Source: ARC from Publisher
The General's Daughter, Kestrel, has every luxury. But even she surprises herself when she bids on a slave for her house. As their friendship grows and feelings deepen, Kestrel is surprised to find Ari, the slave, is maybe her closest friend. But she doesn't really know Ari, or what dangers he brings to her house.
I loved The Winner's Curse and I'm really upset I don't have book two in my lap, ready to go.
There's a lot of wonderfully dark topics explored, such as ownership, unrest and rebellion. Forbidden love, social expectations and female dependency. There are only two roads for Kestrel, to get married or to join the army. I enjoyed exploring Kestrel's social limitations. She is very smart, a good strategist, and loyal friend. But she is also a girl and the double standards that exist in today's society is mirrored in The Winner's Curse.
Ari is a complicated character. Working both sides, equal rebellion leader and traitor to his own cause, he is angry and hurt and vengeful. But he is also soft and as the book moves forward, Ari and Kestrel's relationship shapes into something real--friendship. And then maybe something more. I liked both of these characters for their fierce determination and their struggles in themselves. Because they're both fighting on opposite sides, but above all, their loyalties seem to be for each other.
And by the end, what wins out? How can you get past a girl who represents your home taken away, your life in ruins, your family gone? How can you see past a boy who captures you, betrays you, overthrows the very world you know?
Intriguing and utterly captivating, I loved The Winner's Curse. I read it every chance I got. I had to return my friend's copy to her but don't worry. I went out and bought my own.