Warning: You won't be able to stop reading until you finish it!


High in the treetops above Renthia lies the kingdom of Aratay. It is far from the dangers that lurk on the forest floor below. Renthia is filled with spirits—fire, water, earth, air, and earth—of every shape, size, and form, seeking to do only two things: build and kill. Because of these inherently opposing desires to create and destroy, the spirits are forced to submit to the control of a single chosen human Queen. The Queen has magical powers and it is her duty to protect Araty from the spirits.

When Daleina was 10, spirits destroyed her village. The only things left were devastating destruction, her family, and a discovery that she, too, had fledgling magical power. Frustrated by the Queen’s failure, and determined to protect her family, Daleina enters the Academy. But no amount of training could ever prepare her for what she would face in her quest to be the next queen. New dangers test her courage and strength, forcing her to question whether she really is worthy of the role or if she will even survive to obtain it. As trust is broken and friendship is tested, the young girl is forced to face a dark future she never could have dreamed of with nothing but her determination to keep her alive.

BTSYA / Teen Reader (15):
The Queen of Blood is a thrilling fantasy that feels so real in its own magical way. Sarah Beth Durst creates this beautiful land in the trees where enchanted creatures come alive. This mesmerizing adventure is told from multiple points of view that intertwine to create this captivating story. Daleina’s story is one of courage, determination, and selflessness as she battles spirits and her own self-doubt. Ven’s story is one of strength, friendship, and hope as he fights for a better future. The Queen's story is one of sacrifice, trust, and acceptance as she struggles against her fears. Together, their stories, create this impossible-to-put-down book that will have you hanging on every last word.

This first book of The Queens of Renthia series is a phenomenal introduction to this new, enchanted world. Even alone, the book is one of a kind. This book was a fantasy story like no other with the sense of reality that it harnessed despite its fictional setting. The whole adventure feels real and endlessly captivating as the reader zips through the trees with Ven or soars above them with Daleina. Though this story does become slightly violent as the protagonist faces threatening dangers, her action-filled battles add to breathtaking adventure and the setting of a looming ominous forest.

This book is perfect for older fantasy lovers 13 years and up who love action and magic in faraway lands high up in the trees. This would also make the perfect gift for a fantasy-loving teen hungering for a new adventure they can take over and over again.

Reader Enjoyment Factors:

A thrilling adventure and fantastic but realistic writing come together in a unique, captivating fantasy that is impossible to put down once you start reading. 

Content Awareness Factors:

Some battle violence.

Type of Book:
This is the start of a fantasy series where the setting is a tree and the threats live in the forest below.
Educational Themes:

This is a story meant for fun. Our reviewer uses several adjectives to describe Deleina and Van. Invite your readers to characterize them as well. If your readers love to visualize stories, why not create maps or drawings of Aratay and Renthia?

Reading Level:
Recommended Age To Read By Yourself:
12 and Up
Recommended Age To Read Together:
Age of child:
Teen STAR Review Team, Be the Star You Are!™ . Reviewer's Age: 15
Purchase Recommendation:
Buy. The book is fascinating as a stand-alone read or as part of the trilogy.

Title The Queen of Blood: Book One of The Queens of Renthia

The Queens of Renthia, Book 1

Author Sarah Beth Durst
Publisher Harper Voyager, Imprint HarperCollins Publishing © 2017 (Reissue Edition)
ISBN 9780062413345
Material Paperback
Cost $7.99
Genres Adventure, Fantasy, Coming of Age
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