I was really excited to read another series by Tamora Pierce! The Alanna series had been decent, and her Beka Cooper trilogy much more enjoyable, so I was curious of how this one would turn out.
The cover is kind of weird. The covers for the Alanna series weren't the greatest, and there is minimal improvement for this one. It's dark and dreary, and the title isn't big enough. And I don't like how she seems to be watching my every move. Freaky.
Now, let me be frank; the story bored me. It lacked he drama and suspense that I love to read. I think the best part had to be the ending after the duke died, but that wasn't even the big finale I was expecting.
Pierce's writing style in the book has definitely improved since Alanna: The First Adventure. It still takes place in the Tortall world, but with Aly as the main character. My favorite character has to be Nawat. I mean, how can you not like a crow-human?
So it was decent. Not something I'd read again, but not something I'd burn at the stake.