Uprooted

Uprooted

Book - 2015
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"Naomi Novik, author of the bestselling and critically acclaimed Temeraire novels, introduces a bold new world rooted in folk stories and legends, as elemental as a Grimm fairy tale. "Every so often you come upon a story that seems like a lost tale of Grimm newly come to light. Uprooted is such a novel. Its narrative spell is confidently wrought and sympathetically cast. I might even call it bewitching."--Gregory Maguire, bestselling author of Wicked and Egg & Spoon "Our Dragon doesn't eat the girls he takes, no matter what stories they tell outside our valley. We hear them sometimes, from travelers passing through. They talk as though we were doing human sacrifice, and he were a real dragon. Of course that's not true: he may be a wizard and immortal, but he's still a man, and our fathers would band together and kill him if he wanted to eat one of us every ten years. He protects us against the Wood, and we're grateful, but not that grateful." Agnieszka loves her valley home, her quiet village, the forests and the bright shining river. But the corrupted Wood stands on the border, full of malevolent power, and its shadow lies over her life. Her people rely on the cold, driven wizard known only as the Dragon to keep its powers at bay. But he demands a terrible price for his help: one young woman handed over to serve him for ten years, a fate almost as terrible as falling to the Wood. The next choosing is fast approaching, and Agnieszka is afraid. She knows--everyone knows--that the Dragon will take Kasia: beautiful, graceful, brave Kasia, all the things Agnieszka isn't, and her dearest friend in the world. And there is no way to save her. But Agnieszka fears the wrong things. For when the Dragon comes, it is not Kasia he will choose. Advance praise for Uprooted "Uprooted has everything I love: a great heroine, new takes on old myths and legends, and surprising twists and turns. A delight."--Cassandra Clare, New York Times bestselling author of The Mortal Instruments series "Wild, thrilling, and deeply, darkly magical. An instant classic."--Lev Grossman, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Magicians Trilogy "Reading Uprooted was like rediscovering a favorite old sweater, familiar and beloved. It feels as if it has always existed and has been waiting patiently for me to return to it."--Maggie Stiefvater, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Shiver Trilogy "Uprooted is one of those tales you come back to over and over again because it's just that enchanting. The adventure builds with such tension that you are peeking through your hands at the end, hoping it will all be okay, and Naomi Novik delivers a conclusion that's deeply satisfying, earning a permanent space on my bookshelf that I'll revisit often."--Kevin Hearne, New York Times bestselling author of Shattered "Magical and practical, otherworldly and planted in the real, I could not stop reading this book and neither will you!"--Tamora Pierce, New York Times bestselling author of Trickster's Choice and Trickster's Queen "Uprooted by Naomi Novik is enchanting, in every sense of that fine old word. A charming and inviting story that looks unflinchingly at the strangling roots of hurt and revenge."--Robin Hobb, bestselling author of Fool's Assassin"-- Provided by publisher.
"Agnieszka loves her valley home, her quiet village, the forests and the bright shining river. But the corrupted Wood stands on the border, full of malevolent power, and its shadow lies over her life. Her people rely on the cold, driven wizard known only as the Dragon to keep its powers at bay. But he demands a terrible price for his help: one young woman handed over to serve him for ten years, a fate almost as terrible as falling to the Wood. The next choosing is fast approaching, and Agnieszka is afraid. She knows--everyone knows--that the Dragon will take Kasia: beautiful, graceful, brave Kasia, all the things Agnieszka isn't, and her dearest friend in the world. And there is no way to save her. But Agnieszka fears the wrong things. For when the Dragon comes, it is not Kasia he will choose"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Del Rey, [2015]
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780804179034
0804179034
Branch Call Number: FIC/NOVIK
Characteristics: 438 pages ; 22 cm.

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l
lovemybranch
Oct 21, 2020

Overall, it's a pretty good story but please (SPOILER ALERT) let's get rid of the scenario where two characters can't stand each other until they realize they're in love! In fact, it's such an overused plot device that it's hardly a spoiler. My main objection is that it's such a harmful representation of the way that people form romantic relationships.

Toward the end, I got impatient with the excessive build-up to the defeat of the enemy: yet another danger or setback or enemy weapon. I would have cut about 100 pages, mostly from the end.

I appreciated the way Novik added nuance to the good/evil dichotomy once the story revealed the origin of the Wood's malevolence. Agnieszka realizes that true resolution to the story requires healing, not fire power.

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SherryMarieJ
Sep 25, 2020

Recommended by Tor - Sarah Waites and me

JCLAnneG Sep 09, 2020

This was a great romantic Beauty-and-the-Beast story that doesn't beat you over the head that it was a retelling. Superb world-building that makes me want to visit again.

h
hrtzgod314
Aug 15, 2020

I was hoping there was a sequel to this book, but it ended in a satisfying way. Love the writing. The magic felt so real I could picture it perfectly in my mind's eye.

JCLRachelN Jun 04, 2020

I love a strong heroine and Agnieszka delivers as she grapples with leaving her family and finding her purpose in a new role. The imagery is so well done that I do not want to find myself in a forest any time soon. Recommended for readers who love magic and adventure.

a
AConsolver
May 14, 2020

3 Stars - I might recommend if you enjoy fantasy novels.

Every ten years the Dragon, a wizard, takes a young girl from the village to live with him as payment for his protection from the invasive wood bordering the valley. No one knows what happens to the girls, but once they leave his tower they rarely stay in their home village. When Agniezka is unexpectly chosen, she finds that the tower, and the dragon are not what she expected. As the threat of the wood grows stronger, Agniezka will discover there is more to herself, and the world than she imagined.

This is the type of book I was hoping for when I picked up The Hazel Wood at the beginning of the year. I started out feeling very compelled by the world and the story, I liked the classic fantasy setting, and somewhat familiar story formula. I thought that the magic system was interesting, if not vague, and that the dual magic had a subtle sexiness to it. The first part of the book was compelling, but once Agniezka went to see the king it wasn't very interesting for me. Overall, that part dragged, and in the end the book felt much longer than it needed to. Once things synced back up it was more intriguing, and the ending was satisfying as well. I like where it ended up, and how it all came together. It does feel a bit like other stories in the end, but I'm not sure which ones... I didn't love it as much as I expected to, but that's ok.

r
red_tiger_2354
Apr 24, 2020

This is a title that took me a couple of tries to get into, but looking back I can't explain why I had such trouble. I reread Uprooted recently and I was immediately drawn into the story. For anyone that has tried or thought what's the big deal trust me it's good and it's worth a second and third look plus a reread.

RCL_AnnaS Apr 23, 2020

Reading UPROOTED for the first time felt so much like a return to reading the fantasy books of my childhood. It was a beautiful hit of nostalgia while experiencing something new.

OPL_JacobL Apr 10, 2020

Part of a growing genre of books rooted in Slavic folk tales, this is a story about the struggle of a young woman to find her place in the world after being chosen by her village to live and work for the terrible local wizard, "The Dragon", who protects the village from the encroaching, man eating woods that slowly envelops more of the surrounding countryside each day. This was a 2016 Hugo nominated title for "Best Novel".

JCLJuliaV Mar 25, 2020

This is an amazingly epic fairy tale that puts a spin on a number of classic elements found in folktales. A "dragon" that is actually a surly wizard. A forest that is literally alive and entirely evil. And a romance that is reminiscent of "Beauty and the Beast."
Agnieszka is unexpectedly uprooted from her home and taken to the Dragon's tower. There she must learn to understand and control the powers she never knew she had; an awkward endeavor with many humorous results. But Agnieszka's unusual powers become essential when her dearest friend, Kasia, is taken by the Forest, launching her into an unforgettable adventure filled with pivotal discoveries that threaten the very existence of her country. With the (unwilling) help of the Dragon and an entourage of royal wizards, Agnieszka must fight her way through the hidden past of the Forest and unearth the root of its evil corruption.

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Age

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KMAsh
Dec 24, 2018

KMAsh thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

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PayetteStAmour
Nov 10, 2018

PayetteStAmour thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

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rapunzel454
Oct 11, 2018

rapunzel454 thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

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Greyism
May 22, 2017

Greyism thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

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tgabriel_0
Mar 16, 2017

tgabriel_0 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 14 and 18

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momshoes1
Aug 21, 2016

momshoes1 thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

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lynngin
Jun 06, 2016

lynngin thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

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LauraSteinert
Dec 22, 2015

LauraSteinert thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 16 and 99

Quotes

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AL_SARAHBR Oct 25, 2017

“There was a song in this forest, too, but it was a savage song, whispering of madness and tearing and rage.”

AL_SARAHBR Oct 25, 2017

“He wasn’t a person, he was a lord and a wizard, a strange creature on another plane entirely, as far removed as storms and pestilence.”

AL_SARAHBR Oct 25, 2017

"What an unequaled gift for disaster you have.”

s
shayshortt
Oct 04, 2016

Those the walkers carried into the Wood were less lucky. We didn’t know what happened to them, but they came back out sometimes, corrupted in the worst way: smiling and cheerful, unharmed. They seemed almost themselves to anyone who didn’t know them well, and you might spend half a day talking with one of them and never realize anything was wrong, until you found yourself taking up a knife and cutting off your own hand, putting out your own eyes, your own tongue, while they kept talking all the while, smiling, horrible.

l
LauraSteinert
Dec 22, 2015

"...vanishing like a statue under running water." p. 172

'Dearest," she said urgently, breathlesly, "what a brilliantly original angle [to wear a hat]--I've never seen anything like it before."
I blurted out, "Are you--are you trying to be rude?" As soon as the idea occured to me, all the odd things she'd said and done came together andmade a strange malicious sense. pp 259-260

She turned to me and said dourly, "There's always a price."
"Yes," I said, low and tired. And I didn't think we were done paying." p. 314

n
Nikkelsndimes
Aug 19, 2015

"...truth didn’t mean anything without someone to share it with; you could shout truth into the air forever, and spend your life doing it, if someone didn’t come and listen.”

Notices

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PayetteStAmour
Nov 10, 2018

Frightening or Intense Scenes: There is an attempted sexual assault/rape scene early on in the book that can be triggering for survivors if caught off-guard by it. The scene is swiftly ended by the victim of the attack and she is not "actually harmed" in any way, but the scene is quite intense at first.

p
PayetteStAmour
Nov 10, 2018

Sexual Content: There is moderately graphic sexual content, but it's done "modestly" and in a way that is very healthy and full of love.

j
julia_sedai
Aug 11, 2016

Sexual Content: There is a little bit of sexual content, but the romance isn't really the focus of the book. Also there is an attempted rape although Agnieszka proves resourceful.

Summary

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s
shayshortt
Oct 04, 2016

Agnieszka and Kasia have been best friends throughout their childhood in the village of Dvernik, bonded by the fact that they are both Dragon-born girls. Every ten years, the Dragon—the sorcerer who protects the valley from the dark magic of the Wood—takes a seventeen-year-old girl to live with him in the Tower, and both Agnieszka and Kasia will be seventeen the year his next servant is chosen. Everyone knows that it is Kasia, beautiful, and graceful, and competent, who will be chosen. And after ten years, she will emerge from the tower rich and educated, and leave the valley forever. But when the Dragon comes to make his choice, it is not Kasia who attracts his attention.

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