Tamer of Horses by Amalia Carosella: A Book Review

Tamer of Horses
Author: Amalia Carosella
Genre: Historical Fiction, Fantasy
Publisher: Thorskona Books
Release Date: October 3, 2016
Pages: 312
Source: This book was given to me by the author in exchange for an honest review 
Synopsis: More than two decades before the events of Helen of Sparta...

     Abandoned as a baby, Hippodamia would have died of exposure on the mountain had it not been for Centaurus. The king of the centaurs saved her, raised her as his own, and in exchange asks for only one thing: she must marry the future king of the Lapiths, Pirithous, son of Zeus, and forge a lasting peace between their peoples by giving him an heir. It would be a fine match if Pirithous weren’t more pirate than king and insufferably conceited, besides. But Hippodamia can hardly refuse to marry him without betraying every hope her people have for peace. 

     After the death of Dia, queen of the Lapiths, tensions are running high. The oaths and promises protecting the Lapith people from the Myrmidons have lapsed, and the last thing Pirithous needs is to begin his kingship by making new enemies. But not everyone wants peace on the mountain. There are those among the centaurs who feel it comes at too high a price, and Peleus, King of the Myrmidons, lusts for the lush valley of the Lapiths and the horses that graze within it. Pirithous needs a strong queen at his side, and Hippodamia will certainly be that—if he can win her loyalties.

     But no matter their differences, neither Hippodamia nor Pirithous expected their wedding banquet to be the first battle in a war.

      My Review: Hippodamia, the adopted daughter of the King of the Centaurs, is forced to marry Pirithous, the future king of the Lapiths and son of Zeus, in order to bridge peace between the two races.  However, when the two meet, Hippodamia takes a dislike to Pirithous because of his offensive manner. Yet, Pirithous is determined to make Hippodamia fall in love with him. Gradually, the two fall in love. Yet, despite their blossoming romance, they do not realize that there is a hostility between the two races that will end in war. Can the star-crossed lovers find ways to be together or is their ill-fated romance destined to be a tragedy?

     I really like the character of Hippodamia. She is very strong-willed and has a rebellious nature. Even though she is forced to marry Pirithous, she is still determined to shape her own happiness. I also found Hippodamia to be very smart. There were some moments where I did not understand her actions. She acted like a silly schoolgirl at times. I also could not understand her blossoming love for Pirithous. Nevertheless, she is a tough character, and readers will root for her.

     I did not like the character of Pirithous. His character largely remained the same. He is not very serious. He does not seem to respect her or even care about her. Therefore, I was really not convinced that he loved her. Thus, I found him to be very annoying, and I wish that he was not the hero in this novel.

     Overall, this book is about love, friendship, war, and sacrifice.This novel is very well-written. I thought that Mrs. Carosella did a great job in bring the third bronze age of ancient Greece to life. I also like how she took an old myth and retold it in a fresh and charming way. Still, I found Pirithous to be an unconvincing hero. I think the more fitting hero was Theseus, because he seems honorable and actually acted like he did truly love his wife. Nevertheless I recommend this novel for fans of Greek mythology, strong-willed heroines, and forbidden romances.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars


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