The Hero and the Crown

The Hero and the Crown

Language: English

Pages: 246

ISBN: 0141309814

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

A Newbery Medal Winner

Although she is the daughter of Damar's king, Aerin has never been accepted as full royalty. Both in and out of the royal court, people whisper the story of her mother, the witchwoman, who was said to have enspelled the king into marrying her to get an heir to rule Damar-then died of despair when she found she had borne a daughter instead of a son. But none of them, not even Aerin herself, can predict her future-for she is to be the true hero who will wield the power of the Blue Sword...

“[The Hero and the Crown] confirms McKinley as an important writer of modern heroic fantasy, a genre whose giants include C. S. Lewis, J. R. R. Tolkien, Ursula K. Le Guin.”—The Washington Post

“An utterly engrossing fantasy.”—The New York Times

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match, after all. But then so was he. Neither of them would ever forget it for a moment. Aerin floated through the evening. Since she was first sol, she never had the embarrassment (or the relief) of being able to sit out. She wasn’t particularly aware that—most unusually—she had stepped on no one’s feet that night; and she was accustomed to the polite protests, at the end of each set when partners were exchanged, of what a pleasure it was to dance with her, and her thoughts were so far away

recipe of sorts for an ointment called kenet, proof against dragonfire, in the back of it—” Arlbeth’s frown returned and settled. “A bit of superstitious nonsense.” “No,” Aerin said firmly. “It is not nonsense; it is merely unspecific.” She permitted herself a grimace at her choice of understatement. “I’ve spent much of the last three years experimenting with that half a recipe. A few months ago I finally found out … what works.” Arlbeth’s frown had lightened, but it was still visible. “Look.”

to rig a sling for her, that she might travel lying down, but while she lay down obediently there was no comfort in it, and at the first stop she struggled out of her litter and went grimly to Talat, who had been hovering nearby wondering what he had done that his lady had been taken away from him. She hung an arm over his neck and hid her face in his mane, ignoring the feel of it wisping against her left cheek. Tor followed her at once. “Aerin—” His voice was full of unshed tears, and her

lush lolor, which generally he preferred to anything else. As the sun disappeared it seemed to Aerin that the light never quite faded; but that might have been the glitter of her fever. Talat looked back over his shoulder at her, and Aerin’s knee as if of its own volition bent him toward the mountains behind the foothills—east again; and Talat at once found the hidden trail that began at the edge of the pocket valley. The way was soon so steep that Aerin worried about Talat’s weak leg; but when

overdose of surka.” He eyed her. “Probably you will always be a little sensitive to it, because of that; but I still believe you can learn to control it.” “I was fifteen when I ate the surka and—” “The stronger the Gift, the later it shows up, only your purblind family has forgotten all that, not having had a strong Gift to deal with in a very long time. Your mother’s was late. And your uncle’s.” He frowned at the wreath in his hands. “My mother.” “Most of your kelar is her legacy.” “My

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