Aza is far from beautiful. With pale skin and blood-red lips (not to mention ungainly size), she is seen as odd, at best. But Aza does have one ...Show synopsisAza is far from beautiful. With pale skin and blood-red lips (not to mention ungainly size), she is seen as odd, at best. But Aza does have one blessing: a voice of astonishing beauty. In Ayortha, where singing is the main mode of communication, this gift is no small thing, and soon Aza finds herself rising at court. But, as she will discover, unexpected good fortune can also bring unexpected danger.Hide synopsis
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Beauty: Is it a curse, or is it a blessing? Aza is about to find out. From the moment she is born until she is fifteen years old, Aza is gifted with an amazing voice - one of the two things valued in her land. Unfortunately, the other thing is beauty - something Aza is not gifted with. Suddenly she is made a pet of a Duchess who stays at Aza's family's inn, and off she goes to the palace, in alll her ugliness and horribly hideous dresses, once belonging to tasteless Dame Ethelle. She is soon made Lady-In-Waiting to the Queen Ivi, who turns out to be a simple, immature and needy girl. Aza discovers that the queen can't sing a note, and is forced to illuse for her, making it seem as though Ivi is singing. She also finds out that the queen has a magic mirror - and a bueaty potion. Through an intriguing turn of events, Aza drinks the potion, and suddenly becomes the fairest in the kingdom. This doesn't help, however, as she is thrown in prison under suspicion of being an ogre's cousin. Through the book she learns that beauty isn't all it is cracked up to be, learns to be strong and be herself, and that magic mirrors can also be deadly weapons. I would reccommend this book to any girl, fourteen and up. The romance is very clean and fairy-tale like, and there is just the right amount of 'magic' to make it a fairy-tale as it should be. Well written, Mrs. Levine!
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