Princess Wilha has been forced to wear a mask her entire life. No one is allowed to view her face, and the rumors and myths that have grown up around the princess insure that she will be a fearful mystery to both those inside and those outside of the castle. In spite of her luxurious life, Wilha has no friend or confidante, her mother is dead, and her father uninterested.
Elara, an orphan in a rebellious Cinderella role, has learned to counter the abuse heaped on her by her "adoptive" family with deceit, sarcasm, and occasional disobedience. She has a strong sense of self and independence in many ways, but she knows that she must continue to survive in her difficult situation for a while longer.
Told in alternating narratives, we hear from Princess Wilha and from Elara. When circumstances determine that the two should meet and carry out a political deception, both young women begin discovering things about their pasts.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and because it is a two book series, I eagerly await the conclusion promised by the second book.
ARC from Running Press Publicity.
YA/Fantasy. Oct. 22, 2013. Print length: 354 pages.