Published: September 2011
Publisher: Tor Teen/Macmillan
Debut novelist Kiki Hamilton takes readers from the gritty slums and glittering ballrooms of Victorian London to the beguiling but menacing Otherworld of the Fey in this spellbinding tale of romance, suspense, and danger.
The year is 1871, and Tiki has been making a home for herself and her family of orphans in a deserted hideaway adjoining Charing Cross Station in central London. Their only means of survival is by picking pockets. One December night, Tiki steals a ring, and sets off a chain of events that could lead to all-out war with the Fey. For the ring belongs to Queen Victoria, and it binds the rulers of England and the realm of Faerie to peace. With the ring missing, a rebel group of faeries hopes to break the treaty with dark magic and blood—Tiki’s blood.
Unbeknownst to Tiki, she is being watched—and protected—by Rieker, a fellow thief who suspects she is involved in the disappearance of the ring. Rieker has secrets of his own, and Tiki is not all that she appears to be. Her very existence haunts Prince Leopold, the Queen’s son, who is driven to know more about the mysterious mark that encircles her wrist.
Prince, pauper, and thief—all must work together to secure the treaty…
When I started reading 'The Faerie Ring' I have to admit I wasn't immediately drawn into the story. I wasn't sure that I was going to finish it, and then a strange thing happened. I suddenly noticed that I was at page 152, an hour had gone by, and I was actually mad at my son for interrupting me. Out of nowhere Ms Hamilton's characters had captured my heart and would not let go. There is such depth to Tiki, Rieker, Clara, Fiona and the others that it was almost impossible for me to put the book down.
I've always enjoyed historical novels and any regular follower knows that I am a huge fairy tale fan. Ms Hamilton has taken the best of both genres and melded them together into a captivating and timeless story. Her characters are three dimensional and well written and the story flowed. Granted, some of the situations are a little improbable, but that only added to the enjoyment for me - it's a faerie tale, after all. There's mystery, adventure, family, magic and romance, what more could we want? ' The Faerie Ring' wrapped up nicely, a beautiful stand-alone novel, but.... there are just enough little ends tantalizingly loose, that there is a definite possibility that maybe there will be a follow-up (or two), which I understand there will be. In fact after investigating Ms Hamilton's blog, the titles appear to be 2 - The Torn Wing, 3 - The Tara Stone and 4 - The End Game. No mention of when they'll be published though. I can't wait.
As a final note, this is a very clean book. No language or situations that are unsuitable for younger teens to read, although the main protagonists appear to be about 17 or 18. A wonderful book that I don't hesitate to recommend. I look forward to reading more from Ms. Hamilton.