Jenna never wanted to be a queen’s lady at the castle of Sevalia, as she is a tomboy and the first commoner to serve the queen. Jenna is hoping to have a quiet life at court but this is dashed when her two unique magical abilities are discovered. With a powerful dark mage who seems to have a sinister interest in Jenna, she will have to use all of her wits and magic to survive.
To Play the Lady is a likeable YA fantasy novel which has enjoyable story full of plot twists, some I saw coming, interesting magic and court politics. However it is not the fastest paced book. The main problem with this book was that the characters acted older than they were, and while I know that some 13 year olds do act like this, especially in a fantasy world where people are expected to marry young, I felt uncomfortable reading it.
Jenna is a tomboy, who was a bit too good at everything and felt like an outcast as she is different from everyone else in the castle. The secondary characters are a bit forgettable apart the love interest Sebastian, who is friendly and awkward, and I hope in the next book there will more character growth.
I am looking forward to reading the sequel To Serve the King. I would recommend To Play the Lady to fans of Tamora Pierce and similar YA fantasy novels.