Every Fairy-Tale Ending Has a Price. . . Orphaned as a child in the crumbling village of Tulan, Elara is determined to learn her true identity, even if it means wielding a dagger. Meanwhile, in Galandria's royal capital, Princess Wilha stands out as someone to either worship or fear. Though no one knows why the king has always made her conceal her face—including Wilha herself. When an assassination attempt threatens the peace of neighboring kingdoms, Elara and Wilha are brought face to face . . . with a chance at claiming new identities. However, with dark revelations now surfacing, both girls will need to decide if brighter futures are worth the binding risks.
I'm quite the fan of fairy tales and although this book isn't a retelling of a fairy tale (or at least one that I could discern) it's written in the same style as the retellings are, one of the reasons I enjoyed it so much. You've got a lovely romance, manners and court etiquette, beautiful dresses, and secrets and plots for the crown... all things that I love. Although it took me a little while to get around to it I was incredibly happy that my librarian recommended this book to me.
At the beginning of the book it was a bit easy for me to piece together the plot, but as the book went on it got more and more complex and by the end I was wondering where things would end up. It also had some politics mixed in, war between countries and of course the multiple plots to overthrow the crown. Which was fun and I felt it also applied to the characters. With Elara you could see that she really didn't care very much about the crown, but she did care about the kingdom. While Wilha was a bit weaker and had trouble knowing what she really wanted. I feel like both girls were complex towards the middle of the book and then as things draw to a close you begin to really see how they're growing and changing. And I liked both of them. There were a few other characters I thought were fun. I also enjoyed the world-building and found this book quite hard to put down once I got a few chapters in.
Overall, I'm really glad that this book was recommended to me because I enjoyed it a lot. The plot improved as the book went along and I liked the character development. The world that the author has created is wonderful and complete with hidden passageways and the persona that is the Masked Princess. I liked the writing style and I'm definitely looking forward to picking up the second book, which has already been released. I'm giving The Princess in the Opal Mask out 4 of 5 flowers.
Sara Bennett, someone more likely to be found in bed, curled up with a good book, than out at a sports game or a gig (although she's pretty addicted to music too). Hoping for a better world, believing in her Savior, daydreaming of One Direction, hanging out with friends, or wherever she may be or might be doing....there's always a little voice inside wondering if it's almost time to return to the books sitting on her shelf. In short, an average young woman with a book in hand and a dream to write one day.