The Star Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi // When Greek Mythology Meets Indian Culture

27158779The Star Touched Queen

by Roshani Chokshi

Ebook, 325 pages

Published April 26th 2016 by St. Martin’s Griffin


Fate and fortune. Power and passion. What does it take to be the queen of a kingdom when you’re only seventeen?

Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of death and destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father’s kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran’s queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar’s wife, she finds something else entirely: Compassion. Protection. Desire…

But Akaran has its own secrets—thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unravel an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most…including herself.

“My star-touched queen,” he said softly, as if he was remembering something from long ago. “I would break the world to give you what you want.”

The Star Touched Queen is the type of book that has the potential to be my 2017 favorite, IF I read it at other time of the year. The writing is vivid and rich, filled with Indian mythological creature like Naga and Narasimha. It is a retelling of my favorite greek mythology, the story of Hades and Persephone, but the story is infused with Indian culture. I think the writing is both a strength and weakness, it gives really lush imaginery, but at the same time it’s bordering on purple prose and give too much information.

Our main character, Maya, is strong and intellegent. She loved her father, and even though she’s bitter against the Harem, she still worries about the women when the harem burned. She has a complicated relationship with her father; she loved her father, but at the same time he is the Raja and she knew her duty. When she first met Amar, she didn’t easily trusted him. She always willing to learn, but her intuitive nature, along with her suspicion with Amar and her need to prove herself (as the result of years in harem) proved to be her downfall. But she did not give up and tried to made everything right.

Amar is so much more than the mysterious king. He truly loves Maya, but it’s not the kind of love that shelters and protect Maya. He let her explore her powers and limitations, and treat her as his equal. He respects her wants and decision, and fully support all her decision. He keeps all his promises, and true to his words, his soul remembers’ Maya.

“It is nice to be nice,” said Kamala with a sage nod. “And it is also nice to eat people.”

I really enjoyed the presence of Kamala, she’s sassy and witty, and likes to eat human flesh, but also trustworthy and can be wise when Maya need her guidance. Her presence is constant and essential for Maya throughout her journey, and no matter how hard the circumstance is or how many chance she got to leave Maya, she never did.

The Star Touched Queen is an exquisite retelling of Hades and Persephone, filled with familial interactions, friendship, and of course, man eating horse. The writing can be overwhelming at times, but all in all, it’s a delightful reading experience.

On Growing Up and Letting Go

26 thoughts on “The Star Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi // When Greek Mythology Meets Indian Culture

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