A Throne of Swans opens with the death of seventeen-year-old Aderyn’s father dying. From this, she inherits the role of protector of Atratys, something she does not feel ready for. As a noble, Aderyn has the ability to shapeshift into a swan, something that is not possible for non-nobles (the flightless) who are vulnerable to noble touch.
Having not transformed since witnessing the death of her mother and an attack on herself from fellow nobles who transformed into hawks, Aderyn is in danger of being deemed flightless. After the death of her father, she decides she wants to visit court which is ruled by her brutal uncle.
This book was a bit of a strange one for me. I was instantly pulled in by the title and front cover however I found that I could never quite get into it. A Throne of Swans has probably been one of my slowest reads this year. Don’t get me wrong I didn’t hate the book although I do think that within the first ten chapters it was falling flat with me and I found that I couldn’t properly concentrate on the story. The opening chapters were really long and I found that I could only sit and read one at a time before finding I would get distracted by other things.
Something that was very refreshing for me was Aderyn not being your stereotypical YA main character who is unbelievably naive and makes the worst possible decisions. Throughout the entire book, she is bold, headstrong and brave and is someone who I grew to like more and more as I got through the book. I was worried from the first few chapters that she was going to be whiny and held back by her troublesome past, however, this is not the case. Although the attack on herself and her mother is mentioned often, overtime Aderyn becomes less fearful of what happened and more determined to solve the mystery and get her abilities back.
I am a huge fan of retellings and Swan Lake, the story which inspires A Throne Of Swans, was a favourite of mine when I was younger. However I would say that the story is based quite loosely on the original, so if you are not familiar with Swan Lake it will not hinder your experience with this story.
Although at first, I found it very difficult to get into A Throne of Swans I will say that the story was interesting and the characters often endearing. If you are someone who is not a huge fan of romance then this book is something you would enjoy as the romance elements are minimal and only come into fruition nearer the end.