A Library of the School of EducationDPIUW-Madison School Of EducationUniversity of Wisconsin-MadisonUW-Madison LibraryUW-Madison Catalog
About the CCBC
Authors and Illustrators
Recommended Books for Children and Young Adults
CCBC Calendar and Events
CCBC Podcasts
CCBC Publications
Intellectual Freedom

Support the CCBC
Support the CCBC
Are you a...K-12 TeacherLibrarianEarly Childhood Care ProviderUW Student / Faculty


by Kristin Cashore

Published by Harcourt, 2008
471 pages
ISBN: 9780152063962

Age 13 and older

Katsa—a disarmingly strong female protagonist—is a “graceling,” someone who possesses a special skill or talent. Katsa’s skill is also her burden—she is an unbeatable assassin whom her uncle the king uses as his enforcer, a role Katsa despises. With a reputation as a deadly fighter, Katsa has few close allies, save her wizened advisor and brotherly cousin. When a stranger comes to their court, a graceling prince from a distant kingdom, Katsa meets her first true rival. Po seeks information regarding his kidnapped grandfather. Distrustful of each other’s strengths and knowledge, Katsa and Po lock horns, but their physical and emotional struggle soon leads to mutual if guarded respect. Embarking on a joint mission to discover the reason behind the kidnapping of Po’s grandfather, the two become friends, and then lovers. Their close bond becomes essential to their survival when they face an opponent whose grace is to manipulate people’s perception of truth—something far more frightening than any physical power. Sharp dialogue, intense action, and a mysterious plot reveal the deep layers in this rich fantasy from debut author Kristin Cashore bursting with adventure, magic, and romance. Of particular note is the relationship that develops between Katsa and Po, who experience tremendous growth as individuals in addition to becoming a couple whose lives are inextricably intertwined.  © Cooperative Children's Book Center

book cover
Book of the Week

In accordance with the UW-Madison Accessibility Policy, this site makes every effort to comply with the World Wide Web standards defined in the Federal Rehabilitation Act Section 508, specifically subsections 1194.22 and subsection 1194.31. If you need additional resources or have any questions or concerns about this site, please contact the site administrator for more information.
UW crest