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(Dauntless Path #1)

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  11,591 ratings  ·  2,229 reviews
For Princess Alyrra, choice is a luxury she's never had ... until she's betrayed.

Princess Alyrra has never enjoyed the security or power of her rank. Between her family's cruelty and the court's contempt, she has spent her life in the shadows. Forced to marry a powerful foreign prince, Alyrra embarks on a journey to meet her betrothed with little hope for a better future.

Kindle Edition, 246 pages
Published January 2014 by Intisar Khanani (first published May 15th 2012)
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Intisar Khanani Paisley! Oh my goodness, I do remember you! How wonderful to hear from you. I'm so very sorry I didn't see your question until now - in the middle of …morePaisley! Oh my goodness, I do remember you! How wonderful to hear from you. I'm so very sorry I didn't see your question until now - in the middle of summer. Yikes! I usually recommend Thorn for ages 15+ and would add a CN for abuse, assault, and animal and character death. So if this question ever comes up again (haha), Grade 10 would probably be right about on point. :) I hope you're well. It really is lovely to hear from you!(less)
Intisar Khanani Hello! So sorry I didn't see this sooner. Thorn is indeed a standalone. I do have companion novels (and a companion duology!) planned, but they will e…moreHello! So sorry I didn't see this sooner. Thorn is indeed a standalone. I do have companion novels (and a companion duology!) planned, but they will each center on a different main character. That said, you might get to catch up with some familiar characters now and then. ;) Hope this helps!(less)

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Average rating 4.02  · 
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 ·  11,591 ratings  ·  2,229 reviews

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Miranda Reads

Just released my Top 10 Books from 2020 BookTube Video - now that you know this one made the list, click the link to find the rest!
The Written Review

“We all need our quiet, I think. We all have our unspoken wishes, hopes we cannot mention, choices we may yet regret.”
Princess Alyrra spent her life balanced on the precipice of fear - her brother finds joy in being cruel and her mother could care less.

Her greatest wish is to fade into the background and live her life outside the
Intisar Khanani
Nov 02, 2021 added it  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
This was my first book in so many ways - the first novel I ever drafted, the first novel I took through the revisioning process (omg 16 drafts noooooo), the first book I indie published, and my first traditionally published book. It is very much the book of my heart.

It's also Not Your Traditional YA Fairy Tale. If you are looking for a kick-butt heroine who takes names, this is not the book for you. I wrote this story for myself, because I am not a kick-butt heroine, and if it came down to that,
Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
Jan 29, 2015 rated it liked it
Recommended to Shelby *trains flying monkeys* by: Mada
A fairy tale re-telling of the "Goose Girl". I'm very pleasantly surprised at how good this book was.
3.5 stars

Princess Alyrra has never played well at being princess. She just wants to do her own thing and let her abusive brother and cold mother do as they want, as long as she escapes their clutches.
A traveling King shows up at the palace and makes an offer for Alyrra's hand in marriage to his son Prince Kestrin.
Alyrra doesn't have a bunch of choices. Stay and face more abuse at the hands of he
Lerizza Mae (books&teacups)
Actual rating: 4.5 Stars

I received this ARC via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

This book was first published in 2012 as an indie book and it is being republished now by HarperTeen because an editor fell in love with it after reading the book. And I can see the reason why.

This book has a slow start, that much I can say. So I didn't notice for a while that I came to love the story and much of its characters. I only did after I got to the middle part.

The story is so mesmerizing and at t
C.G. Drews
This is delightfully whimsical and thoughtful Goose Girl retelling, a story that tells sharp truths in beautiful prose. I quickly loved Alyrra and her peaceful and contented personality, how she isn’t afraid of hardworking and she’s so loyal and endlessly kind. There are also faeries and curses, princes with secrets, and royalty that refuses to acknowledge the darker parts of its kingdom. I think it had quite a deft and well-said commentary on how women are subjected to violence and men look awa ...more
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
I’m so pissed off! I wanted to get the BEAUTIFUL special edition from a book box in December but no… they had to go and do that to the talking horse who/whom was the coolest!!

And I just couldn’t get into the book and skimmed here and there and flopped on the floor!! Did I mention I’m pissed at not getting the special edition!! I’m on a budget and a broke chic anyway so, whatever!!!

Damn it!

Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾
Sarah Elizabeth
Thorn 99-cent Sale For A Cause -

All proceeds from this sale will go towards helping a good friend cover the cost of international adoption of a pair of biological brothers with Saethre-Chotzen Syndrome--a condition that results in brain damage unless treated in the first year. Evan (age 7) and Raymond (age 9) were each given up at birth, and were unable to receive treatment for their condition.

B&N: http://ww
Pauline Ross
I loved this book, absolutely loved it. It’s an object lesson for me, actually, in not pre-judging a book, because this one ticks so many of my ‘no’ boxes: it’s YA, it’s a fairy-tale retelling, it’s first person present tense (“I back away...”, “I gaze at him”), it’s more or less a romance, it’s about a princess who doesn’t quite fit in, it has villains with no redeeming characteristics. Had I known all that beforehand, I would never have touched it and I would have missed a lovely, lovely story ...more
Charlotte Kersten
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
♛ may
Book 2 completed for #RamadanReadathon

i absolutely love the new and fresh take this book had to offer YA fantasy

- right from the start, i was entranced by the writing
- it's descriptive and lyrical and kept my interest even during the slower parts of the boko
- the main character was great. she was caring and kind and showed her power through friendships and alliances. i thought that was pretty cool to see her hold power in court without having to be a sword wielding warrior
- this is a retelling
Jan 30, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Full review now up @

5 stars!

Truth be told, I started this book with low expectations and mid-level interest. 'Thorn' wasn't a book that had fascinated me enough to be added to my 'Want-to-read' shelf nor had I come across a lot of excitement or hype surrounding it. This was a completely random acquisition, but boy am I glad I got it!

"It is rare for someone who wants power to truly deserve it"

The storyline begins with much pomp and intrigue, at a turn
Gail Carriger
Sep 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: historical, fantasy, ya
*This review is of the ORIGINAL self published version of this book. The new version may have substantial changes.

A retelling of the Goose Girl fairy tale as a YA fantasy. This is beautifully written and easy to gobble up with a clean plot and some stunning imagery. At times, I found myself a touch annoyed with the main character, she's quite passive, but this may be a consequence of the source material (after all, that's what most fairy tale heroines are = passive). In the end, I wished the ro
Jul 29, 2014 rated it it was ok
This book is based on The Goose Girl, a Brothers Grimm fairy tale. I sort of wish I’d known that going in, because after doing some research it seems like some of the plot points that felt a little random were actually part of the fairy tale and that’s probably why they were included.

Anyway, the first few chapter of this book were so interesting, I was drawn right in. The writing is strong, the world is interesting, and it felt relatively unique compared to other fantasy novels I’ve read.

Camly Nguyen
May 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
When a king asks Alyrra's hand for his son in marriage, she accepts happily knowing that she won't have to live with her cruel brother and bitter mother.
On her way to the other kingdom, she is cornered by her maid that used some magic from an ancient witch to switch their bodies. At first, Alyrra hated the change but slowly, she learnt to cherish the simple life. No princes, no courtly lessons, no dances... But when prince Kestrin(the dude she was to marry) grew suspicious of the fake princess
Mar 01, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020-releases
March 30, 2020:

➝ Sum it up in points!

✔ retelling of the Grimm's fairy tale: The Goose Girl
✔ female protagonist finds her strength & purpose
✔ societal themes of justice and entitlement
✔ free-thinking Horse + sentient Wind
✔ slow-building, genuine romance
✔ villainous witch & robinhood-type thief

Thorn is YA dark retelling of a fairy tale that doesn't confine to the mere recounting of fantastical occurrences but also explore themes important enough to discuss in a world of injustice, royal hierarchy
Jan 24, 2021 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
A cache of vacuous characters who were placed in an indefinable kingdom while writhing in a plot that was as disappointing as it was aggravating.

Moreso with the needless killing and beheading of a horse. What was the point of that?!!
Umairah (Sereadipity)
4.5 stars

Thorn was a retelling of 'The Goose Girl' (a fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm) that slowly unfurled its petals to reveal a tale that had me captivated throughout. Out of curiosity, I read The Goose Girl before reading this novel and I think it truly is a stunning retelling that keeps the best parts of the fairy tale whilst adding some much needed depth and character development.

Trigger warnings: physical and emotional abuse, sexual assault (off page), animal death (off page)

Althea Ann
Sep 30, 2014 rated it really liked it
A beautifully-done retelling of 'The Goose Girl.'

As in the original Grimm brothers' fairy tale, a princess, on her way to meet her betrothed, is betrayed by her maid, who uses magic to force the two to change places. 'Thorn' adds an extra element of magic in that the women don't just exchange clothes; but actually switch bodies.

Prevented by a curse of speaking of what has been done to her, the princess Alyrra must make the best of her new situation and ad
Katerina  Kondrenko
8 out of 10

Ревью в моем блоге/This review on my blog
Living A Thousand Lives
(please use Chrome/Yandex browser or Android/IOS to see the page; otherwise, spoiler-tags I use to make my post compact may not work)

Genre: fantasy, retelling, YA
Stuff: a la The Goose Girl
Fail: a bit passive MC
WOW: prince, atmosphere
POV: 1st person, female
Love-Geometry: none

"I am the Lady who has lost her soul. I am the princess who has lost her self. I am the goose girl who has lost her way. I am the
I appreciated this book even more the second time around. It's a beautiful, character-driven story that defies expectations and easy pigeon-holing, feels much more grounded and realistic than the majority of YA fare, but still hits with powerful emotions.


As luck would have it, I became a raving fan of Intisar Khanani's fantasy right around the time that THORN was withdrawn from circulation preparatory to being traditionally published. So...let's just say I've been waiting for this one for a w
Christina (Ensconced in Lit)
It isn't often that I pick up a book that grips me as much as Thorn did. It was highly unexpected, and I sobbed in many parts because it touched me so personally. I will be completely frank. It isn't a perfect book. But it is one of those rare reads that because of the way I feel about it myself, I rate it as a perfect 5 star because I don't really care that it isn't perfect. It's a raw and compelling story and the fierce and unyielding main character compensates for any other missteps. This is ...more
Ivana - Diary of Difference
Wishlist | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Ko-fi

#0.5 Brambles - ★★★★
#1 Thorn - ★★★★★

Thorn by Intisar Khanani is such a powerful story about finding your true self, fighting against the injustice and loving with your whole heart. 


Princess Alyrra grew up in a cruel family, fearing that her brother might hurt her every day. She despises the fact that she needs to behave in a certain way to appeal to the court. Her despise grows even more when she learns that she's been betrothed to
Sophia Sardothien
May 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc-review
Thank you Intisar Khanani and Netgalley for sending me this book in exchange of an honest review

Having never to read Goose girl, I pleasantly enjoy reading this book.

The plot was alright, interesting enough to kept me reading for the entire time. Despite the fact that the synopsis seems to empathise a lot on the romance, but the main focus was definitely beyond that. I would have elaborate more but I think it would be better getting in the story without knowing much.

The writing style is ext
Miss Naseweis
Aug 15, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I bought this book because of its cover (just look at it, it’s so beautiful!) and expected more or less mediocre YA fantasy. I was surprised to find something completely different.

This book isn’t about a kick-ass heroine who’s a trained murderer as it seems to be common these days. It’s about a quiet, insecure and humble princess that learns to face her duties. Sure, sometimes she frustrated me (I sometimes wanted to strangle her and force her to effing TALK), but I guess I’m just so used to ch
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
Another retelling of the Goose Girl fairy tale, and a $0.99 Kindle special. I'm interested to compare this to Shannon Hale's version, which I adore. ...more
Renaissance Kate
The beginning of this book started off so well that I was sure I was going to fall in love with it. Yes, it was a bit slow at first, but it also introduced a heroine I could root for, intriguing side characters, and a unique world and magic system. I couldn’t wait to see how it all unfolded.

Thorn is a retelling of the Brothers Grimm fairytale “The Goose Girl”.
In this version, Princess Alyrra is sent to marry a prince in a distant land, and while she’s happy to leave her abusive mother and broth
Cee (The Mistress Case)

I wish safety for Krestin, as little as I understand him— safety for him and from him.

I just— this one line— hit mehhh in the feels— I can’t.

Okay, okay, in all seriousness, let’s get started.

If you read and liked The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale like I did, don’t be afraid to pick up Thorn by Intisar Khanani. The storytelling is different, as I hoped it would it be. For one, there are Fey and sorcerers in Thorn and I don’t recall any in The Goose Girl (which I read years ago, so I may be mista
Actual Rating: 4.5

Disclaimer: This book was sent to me by the publisher, HarperTeen & Hot Key Books, via Edelweiss+ for an honest review.


“‘You are neither goose girl no veria, but something better than them both.’

‘You are mistaken,’ I say, the words bitter on my tongue.

‘I am nothing.’”

Alyrra is no stranger to cruelty and being looked down upon, even if she is Princess. Though her honesty may be seen as a virtue to some, in the eyes of court and her mother, it is her biggest weakness
Playground of Randomness
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Alyrra is a princess with a cruel family who take delight in tormenting her. When a King comes to visit with the intention of marrying Alyrra to his son, Prince Kestrin. No one understands why he wants stupid Alyrra instead of someone prettier with a richer kingdom.
Eager to be rid of her, Alyrra's family encourage the engagement and plans are made for Alyrra to leave home.
On her way to her betrothed's Kingdom, Alyrra is robbed of he
“I've found that acting when you are afraid is the greatest sign of courage there is.”

Actual Rating: 3.75⭐

TW: abuse (physical & emotional), assault, human trafficking, off-page but discussed rape, death of an animal, hangings, death of a parent.

I don't have much to say about this book except MAN IT GETS GOOD IN THE SECOND HALF. For the first 50-ish% I was enjoying it enough, but there wasn't much to set it apart from the other Goose Girl retellings I'd read. By the end, however, it was a differe
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Intisar Khanani grew up a nomad and world traveler. Born in Wisconsin, she has lived in five different states as well as in Jeddah on the coast of the Red Sea. She currently resides in Cincinnati, Ohio, with her husband and two young daughters. Prior to publishing her novels, Intisar worked as a public health consultant on projects relating to infant mortality and minority health, which was as clo ...more

Other books in the series

Dauntless Path (3 books)
  • The Theft of Sunlight (Dauntless Path, #2)
  • A Darkness At The Door (Dauntless Path, #3)

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