“If I cannot be better than them, I will become so much worse.”
The Cruel Prince (The Folk of the Air, #1) by Holly Black – 5 Stars
I’m both angry and happy that I broke my ‘I won’t start a series unless all the books are out’ rule for this one.
Happy because this was so freaking good.
Angry because now I have to wait for the next installment and why why whyyyy do people do this to themselves how can you stand the torture of waiting?!>?! hOW?!?! (No seriously. I need tips. What do you do during the awful wait? Just re-read the book over and over? Stalk the author for updates? TELL ME.)
And you know what. I’m just going to say it. This is what A Court of Thorns and Roses should have been. *ducks and hides from all the Feysand shippers*. I’m sorry but I just loved this one so much more.
Like the Faerie themselves, this book is stunning, irresistible, and rotten to the core. It was dark and deceptive and deviant and Holly Black’s phenomenal writing and storytelling made this so hard to put down. Sometimes in fantasy novels, authors like to write pages and pages describing every last detail of the room or land or the character’s appearance. But Holly had this way of being descriptive enough for the reader to get the picture, but never droned on about insignificant details. She gets right into the story from the prologue and keeps the guessing and intrigue throughout (some may call this “lack of word building.” I call it getting to the freaking point – which when done right, I appreciate so much). I usually give a little summary of the book, especially when the blurb is vague, but this one explains exactly what this is about. And I don’t want to spoil a single thing about this devious little book.
“That’s what comes of hungering for something: You forget to check if it’s rotten before you gobble it down.”
The characters are dysfunctional and unapologetic, the political twists and cunning games kept me on my toes, and THAT FUCKING BOMB OF AN ENDING!! WHAT!!!! I sooooo did not see that coming and can’t even begin to contemplate what a crazy story it will make for book 2. (Still sobbing over the fact I need to *STOMPS FOOT* wait another year for it!!! I’m not cut out for this.)
And because the question I get asked most when I review a book is “what about the romance?”, I’ll say this:
Romance is not the main focus of this story but it is fucking DELICIOUS and the scene that kicks it off is easily my favorite part of the book. I guess you can qualify this as enemies to ‘sort of lovers’ (?— I’m still questioning this because Jude and Cardan are so dysfunctional and complicated I don’t even know if you can call them lovers at this point.
Cardan’s cruel mouth is surprisingly soft, and for a long moment after our lips touch, he’s still as a statue. His eyes close, lashes brushing my cheek. I shudder, as you’re supposed to when someone walks over your grave. Then his hands come up, gentle as they glide over my arms. If I didn’t know better, I’d say his touch was reverent, but I do know better. His hands are moving slowly because he is trying to stop himself. He doesn’t want this.
He doesn’t want to want this.
I can’t explain anymore than that, but if you read this, you’ll see what I mean/why I say this. *winks*) Our cruel prince and savage heroine don’t start off spouting love sonnets. No. They really can’t stand one another. And the realization that there may be something more is agonizingly slow but totally rewarding in the end.
“That’s really why you hate me?” I demand. “Only that? There’s no better reason?”
For a moment, I think he’s ignoring me, but then I realize he’s not answering because he can’t lie and he doesn’t want to tell me the truth.
“Well?” I say, lifting the crossbow again, glad to have a reason to reassert my position as the person in charge. “Tell me!”
He leans in and closes his eyes. “Most of all, I hate you because I think of you. Often. It’s disgusting, and I can’t stop.”
The fact that there was so little and yet enough to leave me craving and dying for more just goes to show how well it was done. I seriously can’t wait for the next book to see this ship sail. *chants please HOLLY PLEASE.*
✧ Every single character is morally grey and yes. This. Is. What. I live. For. And EVEN BETTER is that the characters could have totally been written as redeemable but they weren’t. They could have used their tragic backstories to excuse their shitty decisions and awful behavior and yet none of this was done. They are who they are and Holly don’t give a damn if you don’t like it.
✧ I don’t consider myself a violent person but you better believe if I ever saw Taryn or Locke I would start swinging.
✧ Jude is actually kind of scary. Okay, not kind of scary. Girl is savage and ruthless and honestly GOOD ON YOU BOO.
✧ Cardan <— asshole done RIGHT.
“Get down on your knees,” Cardan says, looking insufferably pleased with himself. His fury has transmuted into gloating. “Beg. Make it pretty. Flowery. Worthy of me.”
✧ I really need the next book to have chapters in Cardan’s POV. I need this more than I need air.
I think I’m done rambling now. IS IT 2019 YET!?!
The Cruel Prince (The Folk of the Air, #1) is out now! | http://amzn.to/2FqwNrb