The Cruel Prince by Holly Black – Folk of the Air #1

I was so tempted to read this story because of its allusions to the fae. I love anything to do with the fair folk and I never resist the opportunity to read something that takes place in that world. This novel not only had that, but it also had a very interesting story. Here is my review:

When Jude was 7 years old, a man came to her home and murdered her parents. Then, he whisked her and her two sisters away to live in the High Court of Faerie. 10 years later, all Jude wants is to belong, despite her mortal status. But many of the fey despise humans, considering them nothing more than a toy. This is especially true of Prince Cardan, the youngest son of the High King, who takes a special pleasure in torturing Jude. To win her place at the Court, Jude must defy him – and face the consequences. In doing so, she becomes embroiled in palace intrigues and deceptions, and discovers her talent for bloodshed. But a civil war looms over the Court, Jude will need to risk her life in a dangerous alliance to save her family  and Faerie itself.

This YA fiction novel is the first one to get 5 stars from me for 2018! I loved this book! It was clear from the start that the author was going to give the readers a dramatic, violent, and exhilarating story… and that’s exactly what I got. The first scene in this novel is the brutal murder of Jude’s parents, and their reluctant journey to Faerie. The story then skips 10 years to the future, at which point, all of the characters have pretty much grown up. We learn about how the sisters are adjusting to their lives. Vivi, the eldest (and the only one of the sisters who actually has fey blood in her), wants to escape to the mortal world and live a normal life. Taryn, Jude’s twin, is quiet and meek and plans on falling in love and securing her place in the Court through a well-made match. And Jude wants to become a Knight to prove her usefulness to the fey. I love the complexity of the characters. None of them were completely good or bad; they all had their flaws and internal struggles and desires. It allowed the reader to see all of the different perspectives to a situation – as well as the different feelings about the fey and the Court. This story was action-packed, and the buildup of events was done very well. I loved the political intrigue and the way Jude put things together. I could not tear myself away from this novel because each page led to some new revelation, some new piece of the plan that would eventually unfold. And the ending definitely took me by surprise! I cannot wait to read the next book in the series! If you are looking for a really good teen fantasy novel, then definitely consider this one!

Happy reading ~

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