Blurb: When her father dies just before her eighteenth birthday, Aderyn inherits the role of Protector of Atratys, a dominion in a kingdom where nobles can transform into birds. Aderyn’s ancestral bird is a swan. But she has not been able to transform for years, not since witnessing the death of her mother. Aderyn must venture into the malevolent heart of the Citadel in order to seek the truth about the attack that killed her mother and to fight for the land she has vowed to protect.
Title: A Throne of Swans
Authors: Katharine and Elizabeth Corr
Publisher: Hot Key Books
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Everything changes for Aderyn when her father passes away and the responsibility of an entire kingdom falls onto her shoulders. Throw the problem of being flightless and a nefarious plot at court into the mix and Aderyn’s in for a bumpy ride.
One of my favourite things about this book was the world building. There’s a medieval-feel to Atratys and the court which I really loved. From the clothing to the hierarchy to all the protocols that the characters have to follow, it was really cohesive and allows you, as a reader, to become really sucked into the story. I also thought that the shapeshifter element was really interesting. I feel like we’ve all read stories about werewolves but, personally, I’ve never read anything before where people could shift into birds. The concept of each noble family being able to shift into a specific type of bird was really cool, especially as new characters were often described by Aderyn guessing which family they belonged to based on their appearance. Speaking of characters, there was a real mix of personalities and appearances which kept things interesting and made them more believable.
As for what I disliked, my main gripe was that all of the obstacles that cropped up were very easily removed without much drama. When Aderyn’s uncle, the king, finds out she is flightless (something that would make the individual worthy of death), she manages to get away with it without any real confrontation. This happens a few times throughout the story which left me wanting more. Another thing was Aderyn’s relationship with Lucien – it all felt a little too fast and I would have loved for this aspect to have been expanded on. My main desire was to see more things expanded on so that things wouldn’t have felt so rushed or out of the blue.
Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys delving into worlds where the characters have the ability to shift their shape, or to anyone who wants to step into a medieval-esque world where everyone has their own agenda!
Have you read this book? What did you think? Have you read any other books by these authors? I’d love to know!