Book Review

YA Book Review: Dauntless by Dina L. Sleiman

“Welcome to our world of intrigue and danger. Try not to get yourself killed.”
Dauntless Cover
From the Publisher:

Where legend and history collide, one young woman will fight for the innocent.

Born a baron’s daughter, Lady Merry Ellison is now an enemy of the throne after her father’s failed assassination attempt upon the king. Bold and uniquely skilled, she is willing to go to any lengths to protect the orphaned children of her former village–a group that becomes known as “The Ghosts of Farthingale Forest.” Merry finds her charge more difficult as their growing notoriety brings increasing trouble their way.

Timothy Grey, ninth child of the Baron of Greyham, longs to perform some feat so legendary that he will rise from obscurity and earn a title of his own. When the Ghosts of Farthingale Forest are spotted in Wyndeshire, where he serves as assistant to the local earl, he might have found his chance. But when he comes face-to-face with the leader of the thieves, he’s forced to reexamine everything he’s known.”  

My Review:

Oh yeah!!!

The world needs more books with kick-butt heroines like Merry Ellison!

Take the story of Robin Hood and make Katniss Everdeen the heroine and you have the story of Dauntless.

I was really impressed with this story, the development of the characters, and the way it was written. I could tell that Dina Sleiman put a lot of research into this novel with all the accurate facts and interesting details.

I loved Merry’s strong, dauntless, powerful characteristics – she is one of the best female characters in all of YA Christian fiction! I think the reason I loved her so much was because she had to be courageous and strong in order to take care of her band – but there were also times when she needed someone to be strong for her. I also grew to adore her band of outlaws, all the banter that happened between them, and throughout the course of the book, I felt like I was taking place in their risky plots alongside them.

I usually don’t do this, but I need to add in the opening line to the book – it’s what made me fall in love with the story right away:

I am air.

I am wind.

I am stealthy like a cat.

A wild lynx of the forest.

I whisper my chant as I await my prey, crouched in the branches of a tree, one with it, as I must be. My green tunic and hood, my brown leggings, even my stray wisps of hair blend into the forest about me. The rough flaxen sack, the quiver and bow upon my back, add texture and disguise my feminine shape. Only my trembling hands give me away as human, as other. But I must be dauntless to accomplish this task.”

That is, by far, the best opening line that I have read in a long time!!

Now, back to the review.

To state the obvious by what I just threw in above, I truly enjoyed the dialogue and the writing, it was very time-period sounding and made the book more authentic. The way Dina Sleiman writes, drew me in and intrigued me because it was so fascinating!

It takes a lot for me to be into a Young Adult novel or a medieval novel – combine the two, it’s nearly impossible being that I’m not a big fan of either genres. However, Dauntless was the one exception. This book was suspenseful, action-packed, and fun!

I’m excited to read Chivalrous, Dina Sleiman’s next book in the Valiant Heart series!


★ ★ ★ ★

This book is incredibly clean and a great read for teens (13) and up!!!

There are some action sequences that involve blood; There is romance between some of the characters – nothing too over the top, but it’s a main topic in the novel; There is no foul language.

I definitely recommended Dauntless for those who like medieval stories and awesome heroines!

Find Dauntless on:



Barnes and Noble

Bethany House Publishers

Connect with Dina L. Sleiman:

Dina’s Website

Dina’s Facebook Page

Dina’s Goodreads

Other Books by Dina L. Sleiman:
Valiant Hearts:

Chivalrous (Book 2)

*I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. Thank you, Netgalley for the privilege to review this book! *

*Photo borrowed from Bethany House Publisher’s website*


One thought on “YA Book Review: Dauntless by Dina L. Sleiman

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