The Faerie Ring by Kiki Hamilton

The Faerie Ring
Kiki Hamilton
Publisher: Tor Teen/ Macmillian
Release Date: September 27, 2011
Series or Standalone:  The Faerie Ring #1
ISBN: 9780765327222           
Format: ARC
Pages: 352
Source: BEA
Rating: 5 Stars
I’ve sat down multiple times to try to write this review and each time I have been unable to clearly articulate how much I loved this book. So I’m giving up on that and just gotten write what I feel.
The Faerie Ring was the book I was most looking forward to getting at BEA this year. As long as I got it, I would be satisfied. I get it I did. It was also the first book I read after BEA finished. And then I reread it again. And then again. And then again. I think since I got the book in May I have read it at least 5 times now. If you cannot tell I really like this book.
One of the things I love best about this book is the blend of historical elements with elements of faerie. Faeries are very popular currently, but most books that I read about them take place in a contemporary setting. The balance between the historical aspect of the novel and the faerie aspect was perfect. I loved how Kiki took actual historical figures, such as Prince Leopold and Queen Victoria, and incorporated them into the plot, creating this world were the royal family of Victorian England are the holders of a truce between the Fey and humankind. I loved that these prominent historical figures could be embroiled in this mythical event.
I must admit, I’m a sucker for historical fiction. I really wish that there were more YA books that could be classified as historical fiction. I feel like the Faerie Ring incorporated the Victorian Era perfectly, It adds this extra element to the plot. The setting becomes part of the story. The mysteries of the Victorian era, the hidden secrets and scandals, the troubles, all add to the book. The setting is as much its own character as any of the actual characters. And Kiki Hamilton has put a lot of effort into crafting the setting and making it accurate.
A lot of my love for this book is because of its characters. I felt this story had very strong characters that really drove the story forward. I really loved Tiki. She is such a strong female character, especially in contrast to the women of that age. Tiki is a pickpocket, who dresses as a boy, to help provide for her “family”. Tiki is devoted to her “family”, a group of other street children who she helps care for as the eldest in the group. Tiki’s devotion to her family is admirable. She is willing to do anything to make sure they survive, even stealing from the crown. She’s stubborn in her devoted and love to them and I really loved that aspect of her character. All of Tiki’s actions are done with her family in mind, what would be best for them and how to protect them. I really loved that about her. Along with her devotion to her family, I really loved that Tiki was smart and resourceful. She found a way to survive on the streets of London and be prosperous. She’s clever and tries to figure out the best course of action. Also, she loves to read. I loved this about Tiki because, obviously, I love to read as well. I really enjoyed learning more about Tiki’s character as the book went on and seeing her growth and devotion to her family.
Besides, Tiki, I also really loved Rieker. He is, hands down, my favorite character in the book. He’s a bit of mystery to Tiki and her gang, a bit of a mystery to everyone, but slowly pieces of who Rieker are revealed and I loved learning about him. He’s charming, funny and definitely surprising. I loved how Rieker would pester and annoy Tiki and I loved the back and forth nature of their relationship. Rieker definitely did surprise me. Certain aspects of his character I did not expect and I really loved seeing the true Rieker be unveiled. Rieker was not a one dimensional character and I really cannot wait to see more of him and learn more about him in the coming books. I feel there is still so much to learn about Rieker and I cannot wait to learn more about him.
The plot of The Faerie Ring was awesome. I loved how all the little subplots all tied together into the bigger overarching plot of the stolen ring. I felt everything came together perfectly. I kept wanting to keep reading the book to see what would happen next to the characters. I love how everything was revealed too. There were no huge sudden revelations that came from left field and were suddenly accepted. Everything built up on what came previously until all the pieces came together. And I loved how everything was unveiled. The timing was perfect, nothing was rushed or too drawn out. Every time I go back and reread the book, I still am captivate by the story and just keep wanting to read it again and again. Kiki Hamilton was able to wrap up the main plot points, but there are still a few left opened to be explored in coming books, especially the mysteries surrounding Tiki. I was satisfied with how the book ended and left wanting more, even if it was not a cliffhanger ending.
The Faerie Ring is a perfect blend of mystery, history, romance, and faeries. The Faerie Ring is everything I want in a book and more. Kiki Hamilton’s debut novel has me enamored. I loved every minute of reading it, definitely one of my top ten books of this year. I cannot wait to see where Kiki will take these character in the other books in the series (I’m so happy this is a series you have no idea!) I highly recommend this book to everyone. It has something for everyone and is a great twist on faeries. I’m going to anxiously sit here, rereading this book until I can get my hands on its sequel! 

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