Stray by Elissa Sussman
Princess Aislynn has long dreamed about attending her Introduction Ball, about dancing with the handsome suitors her adviser has chosen for her, about meeting her true love and starting her happily ever after.
When the night of the ball finally arrives and Nerine Academy is awash with roses and royalty, Aislynn wants nothing more than to dance the night away, dutifully following the Path that has been laid out for her. She does not intend to stray.
But try as she might, Aislynn has never quite managed to control the magic that burns within her—magic brought on by wicked, terrible desires that threaten the Path she has vowed to take.
Aislynn is a humble girl for a princess. She dutifully follows the orders and plans of those in charge, despite her caste. Even when there are huge misunderstandings, she never speaks up in her own defense. This is a bit annoying, but fits her quiet, submissive nature. But in a new role that she takes on, she is forced to learn and grow and face her magical nature.
Stray is a unique twist on a fairytale-like world where stories cannot be trusted. Mystery and intrigue abound in this series (and author) debut. And by the end of the book, it seems like Aislynn’s story is just beginning. I’m excited to see where this new series leads.