I hadn’t read such a lovely and romantic young adult story for a while! I’m so glad I got this ARC! It was a feelgood read for me!
Capalon is a high tech kingdom, where intelligence and innovation are highly appreciated. Piper Parish is the sixteen year old princess of Capalon who appreciates emotions and feelings more than everything else has more value in Capalon. Her older sister, the Queen, views Piper’s tears during their parents’ funeral as a weakness, not to mention her strange affinity for singing. This is not only the Queen’s view, but also the view of the citizens of Capalon. The princes is a disappointment to all of them. She still misses her parents. She is no role model, like her older sister. But when she receives an anonymous note, stating that her mother is alive and is living at the enemy kingdom of Mondaria, she risks everything to find her and bring her back to their lives.
She uses a Mondarian ID that she had found some time ago and as Paris Marigold she heads to her adventure. On her arrival in Mondaria she bumps into a cute boy named Ari, get’s herself soaked in hot chocolate and finds the opportunity she needed to get closer to where her mother is believed to be living. She auditions for the King’s 100, an esteemed performance court of singers, magicians, and drummers. Thanks to her love for singing, that was disapproved in Apalon, she makes it to the court as a singer and she convinces everyone she was home schooled and that’s why she is unaware of so many things. She finds herself amidst a group of young girls and boys she soon becomes friends with, living at an academy like environment and learning life from a different angle.
The story is a mix of sci-fi and fairy tale. It starts with the technological advanced Capalon, where logic prevails and emotions are nowhere to be found. Everything is based on calculations, from the daily meal to the match of a pair. Love is not considered something important in human relationships. What is important, most of all, is to make the perfect matches so as to have the perfect offspring, one that can continue the legacy and evolve technology. Capalon doesn’t care about colors and how to make things more beautiful. Capalon cares about technology.
Modaria on the other hand is very much like our world, without television or radio, but with a King and a court of performers. The performers are young men and women and they can be members of the court for four seasons, should the King chooses to give them this opportunity. Which means, Mondaria is the place any young person would be able to have a good time spent with friends, finding love and wearing a pair of jeans. A member of the King’s 100 though get’s to perform for the King and his guests, wearing beautiful clothes like ball gowns and beautiful black suites!
I really enjoyed the relationships between the characters of the book. Piper’s friendship with Darden and Layla was my favorite. It was so easy for her to make friends as she was so open to everything new. She put everything through logic, as she was always used to do and she came out so innocent and lovable. Piper and the rest of the characters are a bunch of teens and this is how the act on each and every situation. It would be strange to read something different. The dialogues and actions fit to that age group.
One thing I would like to see more is the world building. Capalon is not very clear to me. I would appreciate a bit more information of that so interesting place. Another part that I don’t know enough is the history between Capalon and Mondaria. How they became enemies and why would a Capalon citizen be sentenced to death if found in Mondaria.
The ending was a big question mark. There are hidden messages and a back story that points to a sequel. I would gladly read one. The King’s 100 was a quick read for me. I enjoyed Karin Biggs writing style and I would love to read more of her work.
Thank you to NetGalley for an advance copy of this book. The views expressed are my personal and honest opinion.