Author: Kiki Hamilton
Publisher: Tor Teen
Buy the Book: BN / Amazon
The year is 1871, and Tiki has been making a home for herself and her family of orphans in a deserted hideaway adjoining Charing Cross Station in central London. Their only means of survival is by picking pockets. One December night, Tiki steals a ring, and sets off a chain of events that could lead to all-out war with the Fey. For the ring belongs to Queen Victoria, and it binds the rulers of England and the realm of Faerie to peace. With the ring missing, a rebel group of faeries hopes to break the treaty with dark magic and blood—Tiki’s blood.
Unbeknownst to Tiki, she is being watched—and protected—by Rieker, a fellow thief who suspects she is involved in the disappearance of the ring. Rieker has secrets of his own, and Tiki is not all that she appears to be. Her very existence haunts Prince Leopold, the Queen’s son, who is driven to know more about the mysterious mark that encircles her wrist. Prince, pauper, and thief—all must work together to secure the treaty…-summary from goodreads.com
Let your mind roam free and transport yourself back to old London during the times of Monarchy and Faeries. Yes, that’s right Faeries. The year is 1871, and the only thing that’s keeping the Fae from starting an all out war with the humans is a tiny, but significant Faerie Ring. In order for the balance and peace to be kept, the ring must be in the hands of the Monarch.
Enter Tiki; an orphan of the streets. Tiki steals for her survival and for her family of orphans; Fiona, Toots, Shamus and little Clara. One night after falling asleep on a carriage, Tiki wakes up in a luxurious estate. After roaming around the kitchen (and stuffing her pockets with food), she stumbles upon the library. Here she comes to set her eyes on a ring that was left behind. A ring who’s value is to great to turn down (hey, her orphans have to eat), so she steals it. Little does she know that the estate she was in was Buckingham Palace and the ring she stole is actually the Queen’s ring; The Faerie Ring, the only thing keeping a species war at peace.
I loved Tiki, she has a sort of heroine complex when it comes to the orphans. She takes care of the few people around her that she can call family and I admired that about her. It slightly reminded me of Peter Pan and the Lost Boys… except with reversed genders. Her orphans were so sweet, I wanted to reach into the book and give them a hug to help ease their pain and suffering. Rieker was mysterious but I also enjoyed his character very much. He likes Tiki and tries so hard to be the “hero” of the orphan group but things never go according to plan because Tiki doesn’t do well with plans. Both characters are strong and hardheaded, but I surprisingly enjoyed the scenes where their stubbornness met. It was a charming yet bitter sweet.
Prince Leopold, the Queens son, was also a fun character to read about. His disbelief was funny at times, but once his mother falls ill (because the Faerie Ring has gone missing and this usually leads to disaster) he notices disaster is about to strike and will now stop at nothing to get that ring back. He feels guilty because he was the last one to have it before it went missing. (Bad, Leopold! Bad!)
My only complaint would have to be the actual Fey elements. The concept of Fey (as a species) was present throughout the whole book, but the actual Faeries don’t come out until the almost end. I guess you can say I was expecting a bit more of a fantasy novel, but what I got instead was a Historical-Victorian adventure. Which was still awesome and super fun, but I wanted my faeries.
Overall, Kiki has created a perfect picture fantasy novel of the Victorian Era. I loved visiting London through her eloquent writing style. She did a fabulous job at bringing her world, and the characters in it, to life. I’m usually not a big fan of Historical novels, even the fictitious ones, but I definitely enjoyed The Faerie Ring. Can’t wait to see certain relationships develop (*swoon*) and to be back in 1800’s with Tiki and the gang. Bring on book two :D