Sunday, January 14, 2018

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black Review

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
Release Date: January 2nd 2018
Source: Purchased
Format: Hardcover
Pages: 370
Buy it: Amazon|B&N|Book Depository
By #1 New York Times bestselling author Holly Black, the first book in a stunning new series about a mortal girl who finds herself caught in a web of royal faerie intrigue. 
This Barnes & Noble exclusive edition features a special jacket and bonus story starring fan-favorites Kaye and Roiben of the bestselling Tithe series, allowing readers to witness the pivotal coronation scene from an alternate point of view.

Of course I want to be like them. They're beautiful as blades forged in some divine fire. They will live forever.

And Cardan is even more beautiful than the rest. I hate him more than all the others. I hate him so much that sometimes when I look at him, I can hardly breathe.

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.

        This is the first Holly Black book I have read and I am honestly conflicted. I do not really know if I loved it or hated it. I do not know if I would pick up the second book if it was presented to me. This book was extremely slow for me. The pacing was flat. There was nothing exciting happening for a good 85% of the story. After finishing a book like Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas, it is hard to jump into a completely new fae storyline with all the world building that had to be done. And that may have played a factor into my dislike. Maybe I will come back to this book later on in the year when I am in a different reading mood. The tone and mood of the story was just something that kept me interested. I found myself putting down the book often and forcing myself to read it. It was not until the last third of the book that things jump started and it honestly saved this book for me.
        The characters were unlike ones I have ever encountered and I do not know if this was a good or bad thing. The dynamic between Jude and Carden was immature and unpleasant. These characters were just not realistic or relatable. While the world building in this book was incredible, the characters were a pain to deal with. They do go through some form of development, some of them seem to go backwards. Carden was just frustrating. He was more than just cruel. I was expecting a Rowan type bullying and it was far worst. Basically abuse. 
        I find myself more infuriated than excited for the second book. I had high hopes for this book, especially since it had so much hype. I was expecting more, but as someone who reads a ton of high fantasy books, this book did not do it for me. I would give it 3 out of 5 stars. 

Did you like this book? Am I the only one who did not? Let me know in the comments below.
Thanks Hons,
Lee Chand


  1. Thanks for your review Lee! I keep seeing mixed reviews on this book. I haven't read anything by Holly Black. I do know that it will be hard for me to jump into a different series when I am reading the Lunar Chronicles. I am loving Cinder, and just purchased all the rest of the books. Maybe I will hold off on reading the Cruel Prince until the next book.

  2. I'm actually kind of hesitant to read this book now as I'm also in the middle of SJM's Throne of Glass series and, like you, I don't do well with mixing different interpretations of magical creatures in close proximity. Still, I'm glad you found some enjoyment with the world building, even if the characters weren't up to par. Lovely review, Lee!

    Laura @BlueEyeBooks