A reluctant princess has misgivings about her kingdom's new allies as war approaches the peaceful kingdom of Eleysia.
In a prequel to the Web and SyFy Network steampunk adventure of the same name, 15-year-old Riese, next in line for the throne of Eleysia, balks at the role of pretty princess. She would rather be in combat. As war with Nixe looms, she may get her chance to fight. She does not trust either her mother's cousin Amara or Herrick, emissary of the upstart "religion" The Sect, which is offering to assist Eleysia. A secret dalliance with an apothecary's apprentice named Micah, who isn't what or who he claims to be, while disguised as a servant girl adds to Riese's adventure and her problems as war and treachery come to a head. A veteran writer of licensed properties, Cox (working from a concept by series creators Ryan Copple and Kaleena Kiff) does an excellent job telling an entertaining tale with a known, less-than-happy conclusion by enclosing it within an envelope set in the TV series' present. An interesting world and exciting conflicts make up for some predictable characterizations. Boy-girl liplock in the altogether and some graphic battles may raise the lower end of the appropriate audience higher than the publisher's stated 12, but this is definitely a treat for teen and adult fans of the show.
Game of Thrones–lite powered by steam. (Fantasy. 14 & up)