Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Faerie Ring by Kiki Hamilton

Title: The Faerie Ring
Author: Kiki Hamilton
Published: September 2011 by Tor Teen

My Rating: 4.5 stars
Tags: YA | Fantasy | Historical Fiction
Includes: Violence

First Lines: "You wouldn't be here pickin' pockets, would you?" Tiki jumped as the dark figure loomed over the corner where she sat pretending to be half-asleep.

The story is set in London, 1871. Tiki is a sixteen year old orphan living in an abandoned shop behind the railway station. She pickpockets wealthy people
on the streets in order to survive and also takes care of four friends who she considers her family: Shamus, a boy her age, Toots and Fiona, the young ones, and Clara, the little sick one who Tiki cares fondly about. When Tiki steals a beautiful red ring, which she hopes to trade for a bundle of money, she quickly finds out that it's the queen's ring! After the handsome Rieker, a well-known pickpocket, discovers that Tiki has the ring, he tells her that it's more than just a ring. It actually holds an ancient truce for peace between the faeries' and human royals' courts. It must always be guarded by the royals since the faeries want to destroy it and the truce. Along with whoever has it in their possession...

I started reading this book with low expectations since I haven't read anything from this author before and usually aren't too fond of faerie books and historical fiction. Could I have been more wrong?
Wow this book was magnificent! First, the setting...genius: Victorian London set in the 1800s. It was the perfect set-up and the author played by the rules. I hate when historical fiction books aren't accurate, whether by the way the characters talk, dress, or interact. But Kiki nailed the dialogue just right and included real places in London where events in the book took place.

I grew so fond of Tiki's brilliant character: she was determined, honest, mature, courageous - overall a great protagonist. Being a sort of leader of her 'orphan family', she truly cared about the others living with her and would stop at nothing to help heal little Clara, the four year old girl with croup. Each of the orphan characters were developed and I got to know them so well. So kudos to the author for her fabulous and memorable characters that felt so real. I also liked how she was able to put the reader on the fence about whether or not to trust Rieker. He and Tiki start having feelings for each other, but she doesn't know if she can fully trust him or not - whether he just wants the ring for himself. I continuously jumped back and forth with my opinion about him.

From page 153
Her fingers tingled with an unusual warmth when they brushed his skin. Surprised, her eyes darted to his face to see if he had felt the same thing. Expecting his usual aloof expression, instead his smoky eyes were locked on her face and the walls that he usually hid behind were gone. There was something that almost looked like longing in his expression.

The novel had a little bit of everything sprinkled into it: historical fiction, romance, mystery, fantasy, realistic - I loved every page of it! Kiki has a beautiful way with words. Her writing was descriptive, vivid, and realistic (minus the faeries). I felt like I was right beside Tiki throughout the story. The book was deeply imaginative and creative. I was instantly absorbed into Tiki's mysterious world. This was definitely the best faerie book I ever read, and actually answered many of my questions. Nevertheless, I'm still confused about some things, but hopefully they will be answered in the second book. The climax of the book was nail-biting and I had to stay up until 2 a.m. to finish the book because I was desperate to know how it ended. It wrapped up nicely and left room for more, just how I like it.

Cover Thoughts: I think it's gorgeous, love the text and colors.

Book Supplied by: Author for review.


  1. I am really looking forward to reading this one - great review!

  2. Sounds AWESOME!!! Look forward to reading it.

  3. I've heard good things about this one. I"m glad you liked it! I'll definitely be picking this one up when it comes out.

  4. That short excerpt sure is enticing. I'm glad to read such good things about this book because I've had my eye on it for quite a while. And it sounds like I'm not gonna be disappointed. Thanks for the review.

  5. I have heard a lot about this and have recently taken a liking to books set in the past. I agree with Marg that the excerpt is very enticing and I think that I will pick this up next time I am in town. Thanks for the review!

    Bubble Gum Book Reviews

  6. this one looks really good. and another great review from you. =]

  7. Sounds like a great read! Wondering how the ring can keep truce between two beings..


  8. I featured Kiki as one fo my 2011 Debutantes and I'm so excited to read the book! The cover is just gorgeous and after reading your review I'm really looking forward to it! I like the idea of historical fiction mixed with romance! Sounds like something I would enjoy!

  9. This is such a great review. Like you, I wasn't sure I wanted to read this but now I must meet Tiki. I love it when the historical facts are accurate. Thanks for the great review!

  10. I don't usually go for faerie books or historical fiction, which is why I never really considered The Faerie Ring. Seeing that you don't normally enjoy those two either, but loved this, makes me realize that I MUST read it. Out of all the historical time periods I've read, Victorian England is one of my favorites, so it's good to know that this book is both entertaining and historically accurate. Great review!

  11. I am SO looking forward to this book! Kiki is so nice and the premise of the books sounds fresh. Plus, I'm actually a big fan of faeries and Victorian settings. Great review!

  12. I love it when books are hystorically accurate. It adds that real and complexity to the ,us, readers.

  13. I normally stay away from historical fiction myself, mostly because I usually find it boring, but this sounds interesting. Faeries usually make things interesting. :)

  14. I just picked up the ARC at ALA in New Orleans, and I can't wait to get into this book! I love Victorian England settings and having a little faerie thrown it should make more interesting!

  15. Your description of this book makes me want to read it now! I have been visiting Kiki's blog for some time, and I'm really interested in her debut. Thanks for your review!

  16. I can't wait for this book!
    I think it's gonna be interesting to see how Kiki managed to combine victorian setting with paranormal beings :)
    That qoute on your review is really cool!

  17. Awesome review. Now I'm even more excited to read this book!

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Thanks, I love what you have to say!