By Robin McKinley.
I started The Hero and the Crown last night and I just finished it. I had a very hard time putting it down I was that caught up in it. Wonderful, wonderful book. This was heroic fantasy at its best. And what made it even better, the hero of this book was a girl / woman. My only regret is that I only have two thumbs to give it a thumbs up with.
Ms. McKinley, I think, will join the ranks of one of my favorite authors alongside Patricia A. McKillip, Tad Williams, C. J. Cherryh, and Barbara Hambly.