Why this book?
The Curse of Chalion may be the best work of fiction I have ever read. Bujold is a phenomenal writer—her prose grips from the first pages, and her construction of character, theme and plot is astounding. I have never read a novel where the outcome seemed more hopeless, and one in which I knew that the author would not pull off some cheap Deus ex machina trick. Caz, Iselle and Betriz appear to be completely and totally doomed in this well thought out novel. But Bujold pulls off an ending that not only pulls together the character and thematic arcs of the novel, but reaches the sublime for its brilliant perfection. Prepare for goosebumps.
Why should I read it?
What is this book about?
A man broken in body and spirit, Cazaril returns to the noble household he once served as page and is named secretary-tutor to the beautiful, strong-willed sister of the impetuous boy who is next in line to rule. It is an assignment Cazaril dreads, for it must ultimately lead him to the place he most fears: the royal court of Cardegoss, where the powerful enemies who once placed him in chains now occupy lofty positions.
But it is more than the traitorous intrigues of villains that threaten Cazaril and the Royesse Iselle here, for a sinister curse hangs like a…