Meh. This book was a little disappointing. I had high hopes after reading Saving Francesca and The Piper's Son and this book just did not live up to them. Don't get me wrong - it was entertaining and I enjoyed it enough that I will probably check out the next in the series at some point. It just wasn't spectacular. My main problem is with the plot itself. It seemed a little weak. None of the main plot scenes had enough detail to really make them real to me. Things move along almost too quickly and not a lot really happens. They wander around a lot, visit some exile camps, try to find the lost guardsmen and then go home. There's not much of a climax. The main battle scene was not much of a battle. In fact, there wasn't much resistance at all from any direction at any point in the plot. Other than the main characters getting in their own way there wasn't all that much conflict to keep things interesting. Parts of the story (dreamwalking, how they entered the kingdom, why there was so little resistance, the whole story of Beatriss's baby guiding Isaboe in the dreams) were not explained well enough to make sense or make them believable. Some parts were just outright confusing and convoluted. On the other hand, I did like the characters. I became invested in them despite the frustrating plot weaknesses. None of the characters were cliche and all were flawed in one way or another which made them more believable. All in all, I liked this book and would recommend it to fantasy fans but would definitely not recommend this for first time readers of this genre or author.