Rampant by Diana Peterfreund 4 of 5 stars.
YOU EVER KNEW
Real unicorns are
monsters with huge fangs
and razor-sharp horns.
Fortunately, they've been extinct
for a hundred and fifty years.
Astrid had always scoffed at her eccentric mother's stories about killer unicorns. But when one of the monsters attacks her boyfriend--thereby ruining any chance of him taking her to the prom--Astrid finds herself headed to Rome to train as a unicorn hunter at the ancient cloisters the hunters have used for centuries
However, at the cloisters all is not what it seems. Outside, the unicorns wait to attack. And within, Astrid faces other, unexpected threats: from the crumbling, bone-covered walls that vibrate with a terrible power to the hidden agendas of her fellow hunters to--perhaps most dangerously of all--her growing attraction to a handsome art student. . . an attraction that could jeopardize everything.
Rampant was a quickly moving, hilariously written novel. Diana Peterfreund clearly put a great deal of thought and time into her mythology, creating a wonderfully believable tale. I enjoyed the unicorn stories immensely. From the cute little zhis like Bonegrinder, to the towering Karkadann that was said to have been the secret to Alexander the Great's conquest for Rome, Bucephalus. Peterfreund was able to give all of the characters a unique and genuine feel. Watching the main character Astrid grow from a girl aspiring to be a physician to a warrior crouching in mud and blood was funny, at times, and quite moving at others.
The only thing I think this book was lacking was a bit more action. I had expected a great deal of gorey unicorn battles, but was a bit disappointed. While the setting was gorgeous, the actual action amount to very little in comparison to the time spent delving into the characters.
All in all, Rampant is a good book that I believe many fantasy lovers would enjoy.
For fans of: Graceling, Fire, Fantasy
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