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Khanh the Killjoy

To Play the Lady - Naomi Lane The premise was so promising, and I really wanted to like this book, but ultimately it fell flat for me.Jenna Mallory and her brother Peter are sent to the palace, he to train to be a knight, she to be one of the queen's lady in waiting. She has to hide her magic, but does so halfheartedly, using it whenever she wants. Supposedly using magic will get her into trouble, because only those of noble blood are supposed to be able to have magical abilities, but aside from some raised eyebrows, nobody is shocked or aghast that Jenna has magical abilities.My problems with this book, where do I begin...1. The writing. Too many colloquial phrases are used, it reads like a contemporary boarding school novel than a book set in an alternate magical universe. The writing is not terrible, but definitely at a grade school reading level, and without a great deal of complexity. It sounds too modern at some parts, and oddly medieval in others, so the writing does not flow as smoothly as it should.2. The characters. Jenna. I believe the author misspelled her name. It's spelled repeatedly in the book as J-E-N-N-A when it should be M-A-R-Y-S-U-E. She is good at everything. EVERYTHING. Short of the usual girly shit like embroidery and sewing, she fails at nothing at which she endeavors, and with very little explanation. Oh, she has some magical abilities? Oh wait no, she's the equivalent of a master level mage. She wants to ride a horse? Oh, she's gotta bond with the most specialest horse evar!!! She wants to learn to shoot a bow even though she hasn't done so in forever? Bird's eye. Things come too easily for her. Every misstep she makes is covered by a prince, or forgiven by a very indulgent queen. Short of a few spoiled fellow ladies-in-waiting who gives her a hard time, everything seems to be handed to her on a silver platter.3. The massive cast, all of whom is scarcely built upon. I didn't find myself bonding to any of the supporting characters, they seem to exist merely to smooth out the way for our heroine, and their actions are sometimes idiotic and contrary to their role. For instance, her master level magician tutor repeatedly sends her out to scry for a dark lord, knowing it places them and her especially in danger.4. The discrepancy between age and action. Jenna is supposed to be 12 when the book starts, by the middle of the book, she is barely 13, and yet she speaks like an adult, acts like an adult, makes out with the prince, and is warned about sexual magic by her much older male tutor, and given an anti-pregnancy charm.Too many things to iron out, too many discrepancies, not a good read.