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The Rose Legacy

(The Rose Legacy #1)

3.90  ·  Rating details ·  432 ratings  ·  103 reviews
Orphaned Anthea Cross-Thornley has been shuttled between family members her whole life. When she receives a letter from a long-lost uncle, she dares to dream that she will finally find a home. Upon her arrival she is shocked to learn that her uncle secretly breeds horses--animals that have been forbidden in their kingdom for centuries. More alarming is Anthea's strange abi ...more
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published May 1st 2018 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens
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3.90  · 
Rating details
 ·  432 ratings  ·  103 reviews

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Oct 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Why hello there, little book I've worked on for Lo, these many years!

If you are wondering, this is the story that started as "Horse Brigade." I actually used it as a reading piece several years ago, so some of you lucky people might have heard the first couple of chapters! It got bumped aside for the Castle Glower books, but now it's ready to take the stage. It has horses, and intrepid young girls, and even tiny pet owl. Basically: everything you need for a great time!

Final proofread, December
Oct 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
When I was young, I was absolutely horse-crazy and read every horse story I could get my hands on and asked for a horse for Christmas every year (never received one, but still...). If I had had this book then, it would have blown my mind, but since the author wasn't yet around, I suppose it's definitely worth the wait: a fantastic action-adventure in a Victorian-type, steam-punk-y world where horses are viewed as better off dead, since the rumor is that they were once carriers of a deadly plague ...more
Heather K (dentist in my spare time)
My daughter would LOVE this one!
Jun 09, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: reviewed
The beginning of The Rose Legacy, when Anthea gets off a train and steps into a new world, where nothing makes sense, and everything she knows turns out to be wrong, and the ground is constantly shifting beneath her feet, is flat-out spectacular. It may be one of the best metaphors for growing up I've ever read. (It's not a metaphor for growing up at all, which is probably why it's so powerful.) It's great.

...And then the book falls apart. She has a super-special bond with a horse that helps he
Ms. Yingling
Mar 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
E ARC from Netgalley

Anthea is an orphan who has been sent from family member to family member her whole life. She's been with an aunt and uncle for several years, and it's not too bad, but when her aunt is expecting, the stress of havin Anthea around is too much, and she is once again sent away. This time, however, she is sent to live outside Kalabar's Wall, which was installed hundreds of years before because of a plague that killed horses. Anyone living beyond the Wall is certainly uncivilized
Dena (Batch of Books)
Apr 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, middle-grade
Basically, this is all my childhood horse fantasies in a book. 💖💖💖

Excuse me while I sigh dreamy eyed at the stars and fantasize about horses.

Okay, I'm back, but I'm still fantasizing about horses.

Remember those horse books you read as a kid? Haven't you wondered where all the modern horse books are? Because I have. And there aren't any. Until now.

And let me tell you, this book was worth the wait. Basically, it's all my childhood horse fantasies rolled into a single, beautiful book.

I literally s
Jul 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy-sci-fi, kids
If I had just seen this book on the shelf, I probably would have passed it over. Not because I don't like the cover but because I don't really lean toward the animal books and the cover shows a girl riding a horse. I think it's a great cover but not really my style. However, knowing that Jessica Day George wrote it, I decided to give it a try. Everything I have ready by her I have loved-the Tuesdays at the Castle series being one of my favorites. So, I picked it up and read it. I loved it. It wa ...more
Jul 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was delightful. The horses were wonderful, definitely my favorite characters. I did like most of the humans, too. The story was sweet and, at times, humorous. The setting was lovely. I liked the farm by the sea the best.
I have no idea what I just read. But I finished it, so there's that I guess...

The problems started early. There is no explanation of why Anthea doesn't remember living in not-Scotland (it has another fantasy name, but like in Game of Thrones, these countries are analogs to England and Scotland, so that's what I'm going to refer to them as). The first few chapters are about Anthea freaking out that she's being sent into exile away from the snooty society of not-England and into the wilds of... so
Sep 17, 2018 rated it did not like it
This fell way short of JDG expectations. The plot was not very original and the horse's love felt...creepy? Very sorry I did not enjoy this more.
Eleanor M.
Jan 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The Rose Legacy book 1
by Jessica Day George

This is the kind of book that my sister and i love to read, just like Jessica we both had a crazy love for horses when we were younger.
Anthea had want to become a Rose maiden all her life but when her ant and uncle sent her into exile beyond the wall she discovers more then just her long lost uncle Andrew and cousin Jilly, she finds herself on the last farm as they called it surrounded by horses, something the people all thought had died out a long
Joy Smith
Mar 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: adventure, fantasy
I enjoyed the premise and the characters (the horses, especially Florian, the humans, and the little owl, Arthur). Anthea has been passed from one home to another and then exiled beyond the Wall. It's a harsh life, she thinks, after arriving at Last Farm. She rebels and complains. And it's treason! Meanwhile Florian is trying to reach Anthea, but they are kept apart because no one, including Anthea, understands what he wants. Well, he is a stallion and impossible to control since Anthea arrived. ...more
Nov 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What a fabulous book! I got it for my daughter and she loved it so I figured I'd better give it a try too. We can't wait for the next one to come out.
Liahona Whittle
Oct 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Awesome book for horse lovers, I loved it! Can't wait for next year for the second book to come out.
Feb 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
The Rose Legacy appears (to me) to be the first in a series featuring Anthea, who has a way with horses, in a land where they have been forbidden and long thought extinct. Anthea, raised as an orphan and shipped from home to home, is sent off to family in the wild lands outside of a huge wall 'protecting the kingdom.' She discovers a land with mysterious horses and forgotten family, and has to re-think what really is true and real versus what she has been taught.

The book is a mixture of fantasy
Jun 16, 2018 rated it it was ok
Jessica Day George, I love you, but not this book, sadly. It DOES, however (whatever my opinion), accurately capture a girl and her love of horses. (I should know, my sister is one of those crazy, amazing people.) The story was actually great, but I never got to like Anthea. She seemed to be too prissy and annoying. She also changed her mind A LOT. The sad thing is, though, I can see myself doing the same thing if I were in her shoes. Everything changing, going to a new place where all the rules ...more
Becky B
Sep 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Anthea has spent her life passed from one relative to the next. She isn't thrilled with the prospect of moving again, especially when she hears that the house is in the exiled lands of Coronam. How will she ever become one of the Rose Maidens if she's sent out into uncivilized country? And then Anthea arrives at the Last Farm and she sees horses, creatures she's been told all her life in the city no longer exist because they caused a horrible plague. Can she survive in a place where they harbor ...more
Anthea is miserable in her existence as an orphan bounced from relative to relative, often doing maid chores of all kinds from shoveling coal to polishing silver. Yet all of that changes when Aunt Deirdre (her current guardian who is expecting another baby) needs Anthea's bedroom. Thinking she has exhausted all possibilities of places to live with relatives, she is surprised when her uncle announces she will be moving beyond the "Wall" to the Exiled Lands where the undesirables live, with her fa ...more
Anthea is a proper lady who only wants to be a Rose Maiden. But she is also an orphan who has been shuffled among her relatives since her father died. When her current guardian decides it is time for her to go she suddenly learns that she has an uncle beyond the wall.  The wall was put in place to protect the people from the mysterious horse disease that killed thousands of people and led to the elimination of horses. What she finds at her uncle's estate is unbelievable. He runs The Last Farm wh ...more
Apr 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
The Rose Legacy, by Jessica Day George, is a horse-inspired fantasy for middle-grade readers. The first in a new series by Jessica Day George, it appeal to those who love animals and magic, as well as readers who like steampunk books.

The story's protagonist is Anthea, an orphan who has moved from home to home through her young life. When her Aunt sends her to live beyond The Wall to The Last Farm, she discovers she has family she never knew there along with a strange power. She has The Way, whi
Cindy Mitchell *Kiss the Book*
George, Jessica Day The Rose Legacy, 260 pages. Bloomsbury, 2018. $17. Content: Language: G; Mature Content: G; Violence: PG.

Anthea has been moved from relative to relative ever since she was orphaned, until she is invited by a distant uncle to come and live with him. Anthea is hesitant to live with this uncle because he lives on the other side of the Wall and Anthea has been raised to think only outlaws live on the other side. When Anthea gets to her uncle's, she is further perplexed because h
Jul 30, 2018 rated it liked it
Orphaned Anthea has been shuffled from one relative to another ever since her parents' death, but now she is being sent to an uncle who lives in the wild lands beyond the Wall. At his farm, she will discover that many of the things she's been taught all her life are untrue -- particularly regarding horses, which she had heard were disease-carriers and extinct. Neither of these things are true -- so why is that what children south of the Wall are taught?

This is an enjoyable book, with plenty of h
Mar 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, middle-grade
"The Rose Legacy" is a tween fantasy novel. I loved novels involving horses when I was a kid, and I enjoyed this one even as an adult. The characters acted realistically and were interesting. The world-building, though not extensive, did give it a unique feel. Anthea grew up with cars and trains, but life on the family farm revolves around horses and using the gift that allows people to communicate with horses.

Anthea has been passed around from relative to relative because she's an orphan. She t
Claire Hill
May 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, young-adult
Ten-year-old me is LIVING right now.

The Rose Legacy is the story of Anthea Thornley, who has been moved from relative to relative since she was very small. When she is ousted from her last home, she is sent to live with her uncle in the far north, above the wall. When she gets there, she discovers that what she has heard all her life is a lie—horses exist, and they live at Last Farm.

This book is a love letter to everybody who wished passionately for a horse between the age of eight and sixteen
Jul 21, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: children-s-books
The story itself wasn't bad but the main issue that I had with this book is that nothing really made much sense. The main premise is that horses were killed off for being "dangerous" and causing plague and everyone now sees horses as monsters and the whole plot revolves around that, but it just wasn't believable. It all seemed thrown together and unreal. I mean, a king builds a huge wall to protect his people from horses? I could understand this if it were a girl befriending a dragon, even a wol ...more
While I don't think anything else she writes could beat the glories of Tuesdays in the Castle, I think this comes pretty dang close. I'm a sucker for princess stories + magic animal powers, and like, you throw in Jessica Day George's writing on top of it? Ooh boy, I'm there. :D

I may go more in-depth reviewy later, but for now, I will leave it at this: The Rose Legacy is a fun, easy read. The world-building is interesting for its uniqueness, and the main characters all felt believable. No one is
Apr 14, 2019 rated it liked it
Cute. This is a book I imagine a lot of young (3rd-5th grade) readers would enjoy. It's pseudo-fantasy, but the setting is somewhat unique, and I mean, what kid at that age doesn't love horses and dream of having one? The main character's deep connection to one horse is something I've seen in other books (like "Pegasus" by Robin McKinley and "The Horse and His Boy" by C.S. Lewis), but it's nicely handled here. I genuinely don't have a great deal to say beyond that. The book is decent, the writin ...more
Becky H.
Sep 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Anthea has been passed from relative to relative but is surprised when she is sent to live with an uncle she did not know about. This uncle also lives beyond the Wall to the Exiled Lands. She is however very surprised and shocked when she arrives and sees the monstrous horses that are on his estate. Horses have long been outlawed for carrying the plague. But all of Anthea's fears melt away when she meets the horse Florian and discovers that she has the ability to sense horses thoughts and feelin ...more
Apr 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, tween
Received an ARC via Netgalley.

Anthea is a poor orphan girl who has grown up being passed from relative to relative. When she is forced to move one last time to family she has never heard of, she finds an uncle and cousin who welcome her with open arms and discovers a world of wonderful creatures. She also finds that she has a special gift and is able to communicate with the horses in a wonderful Way- they can speak with each other using their minds.

All is not well, though, and when the King disc
Sep 18, 2018 rated it it was ok
I read this with my seven year-old daughter and it was clear that we both finished the book just to finish it. The story meanders without a clear conflict and although there is a decent resolution, it mostly comes out of nowhere and consequently wasn't satisfying. There are some threads deliberately left open for a sequel, but none of them suggest the conflict or need for a sequel. The writing throughout was mostly dull, but the concept was interesting. Of course, I am not the target audience, s ...more
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Jessica Day George likes chocolate, knitting, books, travel, movies, dragons, horses, dogs, and her family. These are all things to keep in mind if you ever meet her. For instance, you could bring her chocolate to make the meeting go more smoothly. You could also talk about how adorable her children are, even if you have never seen them. You could discuss dog breeds (she had a Maltese named Pippin ...more

Other books in the series

The Rose Legacy (2 books)
  • The Queen's Secret (The Rose Legacy, #2)