I like the IDEA of this book, but the execution was lacking, which for me was a disappoint. Robin McKinley is a wonderful writer and one of my favorites, but her last few books have had something lacking. This is another case of that in a lot of ways.First the good:The world she describes is amazing. I loved the descriptions of the characters, especially the pegasi. I loved the protagonist and her family, they were all very sensible and down to earth for a royal family. I like the fact that the ruling class was made up of farmers and soldiers and people of all backgrounds. Her mom was a warrior as much as the princes were and that too appealed to me.The pegasi are a gentle and delicate race of artists and farmers. I loved seeing the world through their eyes and hearing the descriptions of their politics and how they live.The bad:The storyline didn't really seem to have a point. I mean, by the END of the book, you could kind of see what her point was and where she going, but seriously, the entire time I was reading this book, I kept wondering... "Where is this going and why do I care?" The end result was that the cliff hanger ending caught me totally by surprise, such was the CRAZY DRAMA of it -that it didn't match the rest of the book AT ALL.The antagonist was poorly described, and even the main character couldn't seem to figure out what was going on. It was such a strange mix for me -how she vacillated between very observant and just plain DUMB. I found myself liking her father and her mother more than her. That is not a good quality in a protagonist.I gave the book three stars because it's Robin McKinley and I still want to like her writing. I also was so disappointed in the character and the storyline that I couldn't give it 5 stars.