Running away from her school after being unfairly punished for beating a social superior in a fair fight, Karigan comes across a dying Green Rider (royal courier), who asks her to deliver his message to the king. Karigan agrees, and spends much of the rest of the book trying to get to the king (resisting various attackers and assorted fantastic beasts). Karigan's own character is well-drawn, and she is sympathetically portrayed; some of the other characters (eg the king) could be developed a bit more, but were generally quite interesting. The plot is not all that original, and the 'twists' are mostly predictable, but it is well done on the whole. Indeed, the sense of 'pace' in the book reminds me of the earlier Robert Jordan books in the Wheel of Time series (before he got bogged down in the last few). A fair few nods to Tolkien and others in the field, but sufficiently original not to be a pale copy. The writing is good, there is a lot of action, some of the ideas could be better developed, but I would definitely recommend it as a good read. In fact, I couldn't put it down, and rushed out next day to see if there was a sequel (sadly, none as yet) - need I say more? Overall, a very good read, and shows good promise for future work. Highly recommended for entertainment value.