March 22, 2019

Review| The Cruel Prince

The Cruel Prince (The Folk of the Air #1)
Holly Black

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UK Publisher: Hot Key Books

UK Release Date: July 28th, 2018
Format: Paperback
Page Count: 370

Jude was seven years old when her parents were murdered and she and her two sisters were stolen away to live in the treacherous High Court of Faerie. Ten years later, Jude wants nothing more than to belong there, despite her mortality. But many of the fey despise humans. Especially Prince Cardan, the youngest and wickedest son of the High King.

To win a place at the Court, she must defy him–and face the consequences.

In doing so, she becomes embroiled in palace intrigues and deceptions, discovering her own capacity for bloodshed. But as civil war threatens to drown the Courts of Faerie in violence, Jude will need to risk her life in a dangerous alliance to save her sisters, and Faerie itself.

Well, well, well... I finally gave in to the hype machine of the book community. And somehow, The Cruel Prince still somehow exceeded my expectations. 

I can be oddly specific I can be about the kind of fae I like to read about, I like dark, twisted and never really knowing where the main character or I stand in trying to figure them out to predict their next move. 

I wanted 'cruel', I wanted 'wicked', and I wanted 'intricate' and that's what Holly Black delivered in her A-game. 

I absolutely loved Jude as a first-person narrator and as the main character. She felt grounded, her motives and how she dealt with them were interesting and believable. I especially like the dynamic that was explored between Jude's sisters and how they have grown into the people they have because of the action's that happened before the events set in The Cruel Prince.

I have some issues with what everyone identifies this book with: the romance between Jude and Carden. On the one hand, I'm glad that the "hate-to-love" aspect wasn't solved within a chapter and seems to be ongoing onto the next book, The Wicked King. However, there are some early instances at the beginning of the book that left me with an unsavory taste in my mouth. For me, they weren't challenged enough to make me completely buy into this relationship set-up (and that's to assume that they will be endgame). Ultimately it was bullying, but I am hoping there is some set up for this to be resolved. 

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