Note: This is part of a series on BookTok and the books it features by my fall intern Kaitlin “Kait” Carmichael. We hope you enjoy it.
Let’s transport ourselves to a whimsical fairy world. The Cruel Prince by Holly Black takes us to a far-off land that is filled with beauty, charm, and a dark underlying societal system that favors mystical creatures.
This magical story begins in the mortal world. Siblings Vivienne, Jude, and Taryn have led normal lives thus far, though Vivienne is a bit different; she has pointed features and is slightly mystical.
One night, a man named Madoc visits their house, looking for their mother. Little do they know he would change their lives forever. Madoc takes Vivienne to the land where she is from, Faerieland. Turns out, the girls’ mother was the wife of Madoc but fled with Vivienne. Vivi’s mother wanted nothing to do with Faerieland, and that was the start of her mother’s end.
Madoc kills the girl’s mother and Jude and Taryn’s father. While Vivienne has faerie blood, Jude and Tayrn are outsiders and are not welcome in Faerieland, yet Madoc takes them there to protect them. As the girls grow up, Vivi despises everything about Faerieland, while Jude and Taryn only know it as a magical place.
Throughout the story, Jude is forced to prove herself time and time again to show she is just as worthy to live in Faerieland. Taryn would rather just be married and live out her days protected by a man. Not in Jude’s world. Jude is fighting for knighthood to prove that a mortal can fight just as well as the mystical creatures that make up Faerieland.
This story is riveting from beginning to end. I never wanted to put the book down. Jude is such a complex character and isn’t afraid to stand up for herself or her sister. She gives me Katniss Everdeen vibes from The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. The self-righteous sister set out to protect herself and her sister from an oppressive world. Jude’s sassiness made me hold my breath a few times just because I didn’t know how the events would play out.
I definitely recommend this fantasy book that is easy to comprehend. Yes, there is world building but it is integrated into our world which makes the story flow very well. This book is actually a part of a trilogy!
Unfortunately, as my semester comes to a close, this will be my last blog post on Janice Beetle Books. I had so much fun reading and reviewing for everyone and this was an amazing opportunity for me. I want to thank Janice Beetle for giving me a platform to express myself and my thoughts. I hope I convinced at least one person to read a book that I reviewed and I hope you all enjoyed this series!