Alanna of Trebond wants to be a knight. Therefore she, disguised as the boy "Alan", swaps places with her twin brother Thom, to go to the royal palace in the city of Corus to try for knighthood. Throughout the four novels Alanna meets many friends, including George, the charming and mischievous King of Thieves; the lovable but unkempt scholar Sir Myles of Olau; sharp Gareth "Gary" of Naxen; gentle giant Raoul of Goldenlake; beautiful Princess Thayet of Sarain; deadly Liam the Shang Dragon; and Prince Jonathan of Conte, Alanna's best friend and sometimes lover. She also meets several foes, including Ralon of Malven, and Duke Roger of Conte, Jonathan's charming but sly cousin, who is later portrayed as an ambitious and murderous madman. Alanna also acquires a new pet-her mysterious black cat Faithful, who, true to his name, keeps her from harm. Faithful is hinted to be an immortal, but his origins remain unknown. (In the Beka Cooper Trilogy- Terrier- it is guessed that Faithful- known as Pounce- is a constellation named The Cat that has come down to earth.) Besides her physical battles (overcoming her ineptness with a sword and learning to use her small stature to her own advantage), she also has trouble accepting her sex, magic, and overcoming both her temper and her stubbornness, which gets her frequently into trouble. She becomes emotionally entangled with George, Liam, and Jonathan, and matures as a result. After being adopted into a Bahzir tribe, she learns to embrace her magic as part of her and use it, learning to wield it wisely without fear. The Song of the Lioness is a series of young adult fantasy novels published in the 1980s by Tamora Pierce. The series consists of four books: Alanna: The First Adventure (1983), In the Hand of the Goddess (1984), The Woman Who Rides Like a Man (1986) and Lioness Rampant (1988).
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