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coverJust Didn't Like the Protagonist
Melting Stones
Tamora Pierce

Very few of Pierce's books have first-person protagonists; in fact, i'm pretty sure that the only others are the "Beka Cooper" books - Terrier, Bloodhound and Mastiff.

And i just didn't like Evvy.

(I like Beka, OTOH, so it's not her handling of first-person narrative per se that i have problems with...)

I didn't like her when Briar found her on the street and had to make sure she got magical training ... and i don't like her now when the's travelling with Rosethorn.

Her "voice" (speaking of the characterisation, not the audiobook version, which, like all audiobooks, i avoided) just set my figurative teeth on edge, liek chalk on a blackboard, and her attitude didn't help any, either.

But, if you like Pierce in general and the "Circle of Magic" books in particular, you ought try this one - maybe you'll like Evvy (or at least not be annoyed by her).

And, setting aside an annoying protagonist, there's a lot to like in this one, starting with Evvy's friend (whose name i have, i'm ashamed to say, forgotten), who is, apparently, a mountain - or at least, the elemental spirit of one.

And, of course, Rosethorn can be counted on for the occasional acerb and apropos comment at the appropriate (read, most annoying for someone who needs annoying) moment...