Huntress is dying. The seasons won't change, the sky is a constant shade of grey, crops are dried up, and people are starving. Kaede and Taisin are two teenage girls in an academy training to be sages. Taisin is a gifted sage from a humble birth, while Kaede has remained in the academy despite any magical ability because she is the chancellor's daughter.
When the King receives an invitation from the Fairy Queen, Taisin's visions and a prophecy determine that Kaede and Taisin must accompany Prince Con into the world of fairy. Taisin's only worried about one thing: in her vision, she's in love with Kaede and sages must take a vow of celibacy. Taisin wants more than anything to be a sage and is determined to not let any feelings get in her way.
Huntress by Malinda Lo is a splendid fantasy full of both intense adventure and a sweet romance. The love story in this book feels so genuine and pure. I kept reading late into the night just to see more interaction between these two girls.
Huntress is technically a prequel to Ash, Lo's retelling of Cinderella. Although I loved Ash as well, I feel like Huntress is the stronger book and is easy to read completely on its own. If you like Graceling by Kristin Cashore ( I love it!) then I think you'll enjoy Huntress as well.
And for you writer-types, Lo does something interesting with point-of-view. Huntress is told in 3rd person omniscient-ish. We see inside several characters' heads. I hadn't read a contemporary book that pulls this off until now.
So, check out Huntress and let me know what you think!
Ooh, also. I just read this epilogue-ish short story by Malinda Lo here.