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Crown Duel

Crown Duel [Kindle Edition]

Sherwood Smith
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £5.74
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Product Description

Product Description

Over their father’s deathbed, young Meliara Astiar and her brother Branaric promise to lead their people against the evil King. The impoverished count and countess discover that even when the cause is right, leading a war is much tougher than it appears. When Meliara falls into the hands of the elegant Marquis of Shevraeth, the enemy commander, she knows she has to either escape or die. After a desperate chase across country, she discovers that she and Bran are not alone—but the alliance is offered by the person she hates the most.

Once the king is gone, she faces a new type of battlefield: not muddy fields and sharpened steel, but marble palaces. The weapons now are fashion, manners, and the subtle and secret language of fans. Finally, there is the toughest challenge of all, courtship. For how do you defend yourself when the one who draws your eye, and your heart, is your worst enemy?

Crown Duel, once published as Crown Duel and Court Duel, was put together with an added story by Firebird in 2003.

The e-book edition has the above plus several scenes from the hero’s point of view.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 706 KB
  • Print Length: 471 pages
  • Publisher: Book View Cafe; 3 edition (7 Feb 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #77,819 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars superb! 1 Feb 2009
By Ginny
Format:Mass Market Paperback
When this book arrived i was worried it would be written in a way that would make it difficult to continue with if you were above a certain age; some books are just immature in that way. Thankfully this isn't one. There is plenty of intrigue, suspense, character development, even magic and romance. written so that one chapter flows easily into the next and you hardly notice the breaks in writing.
mel is likeable enough for a heroine and as the book progresses we are introduced to her brother, her friends and her enimies.

As a very basic summary; mel is a countess, her family is poor and she has spent much of her childhood running barefoot with the village urchins she considered her friends and dancing to the music of the mysterious hill folk. The book starts when her father is dying and calls her and her brother bran to his chamber where he makes them both promise that they will work together to rid the land of its tyranic king and try and instate themselves as rulers through a claim on their late mothers side. Brother and sister then rally the villages and start a revolt, hoping that the rest of the kingdom will join them and help make changes for the better. This is all disrupted when the king sends a prominent marquis in charge of his army and they manage to capture mel.....

the book takes us through captivity and a desperate flight across the countryside, then in book two to the delicate dance of life at court... but you'll have to find out the rest for yourself.

definitely a plesant weekend's distraction, for both young and more mature readers :)
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25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars When'll the pages start crumbling? 28 May 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
My copy has been sadly misused, dragged all over the place, layed lovingly under my pillow, shoved in and out of my bookcase... The fact is that the tale is so gripping and good that it doesn't wear off like paper does. Now reviews are for info, so here goes:
Meliara Astiar and her brother Branaric swear an oath to their dying father to keep the covenant and protect the people of Tlanth (even the names are brilliant). The taxes are too high, and they can't protect themselves and the covenant without going to war. The fact is that they are tactless, Meliara growing up a barefoot countess and Branaric so honoust he could nearly sprout wings. Court is no option, they lead the chase over the mountains of Tlanth. It's going fine, until another commander comes, and captures Mel, sort of.
Mel needs to find a way out, but how can she, when the whole court seems to be chasing her, and even the weather is against her? Join this stubborn, hot-headed countess on a journey that takes her from high mountain to scary dungeon, and maybe even to victory.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A romantic adventure story 1 Nov 2009
By AnetteF
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book was originally published in two volumes, 'Crown Duel' and 'Court Duel'. I think it works better as a single volume as it turns it into a very acceptable 470 page stand-alone novel.

Countess Meliara has grown up in a backwater castle and upon the death of her father finds herself with her brother leading the fight against a greedy King whose taxation policy is crippling his people. This eventually leads her to the royal palace where she struggles, un-used as she is to the intrigues of the court, and soon finds herself doubting those around her. One of them is the enigmatic Marquis of Shevraeth, a long-standing adversary, who manages to infuriate Meliara with his arrogant and foppish behaviour. Meliara must learn to fight with wit, words and secret alliances.

The characterisation (especially Meliara's brother) is sometimes a bit one-dimensional and the way the revolution is fought is stretching believability, but I thoroughly enjoyed Meliara's adventures.

All in all, the book is a light hearted, fun read and will appeal mainly to those interested in romantic fantasy.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Always with the heavy rain? 6 Oct 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
An interesting story. I felt the author lacked sufficient knowledge to write detailed battled scenes from the period she chose to set her characters in, and as the start of the book is based around Mel and her brother Brans pledge to their father to bring down the unloved and bullying current Monarch, it seemed this lack of detail would be a problem. However, once that part of the story was out of the way and Mel became involved in the intricacies of court life and intrigue, this book really came to life. I enjoyed the way the lead character was portrait and found her character to be consistent. The love interest with her "Unknown" suitor was fun, though enough clues had been dropped to leave the reader in little doubt as to who this was. Still I thought it was sensitively handled and enjoyable. I did find her constant setting of events during heavy rain odd. Almost nothing noteworthy can happen in Crown Duel unless it was lashing down, no matter the season. Just a strange observation. But overall it held my interest.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Crown Duel 7 Nov 2012
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Meliara and her brother promise their dying father to protect their people from the King's growing greed, but they find themselves in over their heads both in the war they are waging and in peacetime at the court. Meliara is a very strong and independent person and Smith has a talent for writing interesting and well-rounded characters. This is an incredible story and would recommend it to everyone who likes enjoyable fantasy especially those who like Tamora Pierce's books.
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