Fall in love, break the curse.
It once seemed so easy to Prince Rhen, the heir to Emberfall. Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year over and over, he knew he could be saved if a girl fell for him. But that was before he learned that at the end of each autumn, he would turn into a vicious beast hell-bent on destruction. That was before he destroyed his castle, his family, and every last shred of hope.
Nothing has ever been easy for Harper Lacy. With her father long gone, her mother dying, and her brother barely holding their family together while constantly underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy, she learned to be tough enough to survive. But when she tries to save someone else on the streets of Washington, DC, she’s instead somehow sucked into Rhen’s cursed world.
Break the curse, save the kingdom.
A prince? A monster? A curse? Harper doesn’t know where she is or what to believe. But as she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land, she begins to understand what’s at stake. And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm, his hope comes flooding back. But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall . . . and it will take more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin.
** Copy kindly provided by Bloomsbury Children´s via Netgalley in exchange for my opinion **
I like fairy tale retellings. So much so that I´d drop whatever I´m reading just to dive head first in a pimped fairy tale. What some might not be aware of is that this book is more than just a retelling. It´s more or less a mash up of two popular stories with a pinch of the authors own signature.
Beauty & The Beast meets A Court Of Thorns And Roses
I´m not mad about the mash up, though. I thought `A Curse So Dark And Lonely` was an interesting read. I´m pretty sure the story will find it´s devoted crowd once it hits the shelves. But for me… I wasn´t entirely impressed.
Beauty & The Beast belongs to one of my favorite fairy tales. I´m just a sucker for Stockholm syndrome romances. But this book leaned more towards ACOTAR. Which is fine. I didn´t have the hots for ACOTAR ( or for the series, for that matter ) but I did like what Brigid Kemmerer did with the ideas from ACOTAR that inspired her.
(Note: I´m just assuming the author was inspired by A Court Of Thorns And Roses. I could be wrong. I could be right. It just feels like the author was heavily inspired by Sarah J. Maas´s books )
With that being said:
I did enjoy `A Curse So Dark And Lonely` to a certain degree. It has it´s adventurous moments. It´s cheasy. There was a romance. Things I appreciate when reading fantasies.
What I truly enjoyed were:
- The details. The author has a knack for coloring out details. I felt there was no detail overkill what so ever.
- The strong characters.
- The plot twist. Although the story was predictable, I still enjoyed out the story panned out.
- This is an admirable sized story. One I read through with ease due to it´s great pace.
Yet, there were some things about the story / it´s characters I had troubles accepting:
- The Heroine´s disability. Harper, a bad ass teenager, suffered from cerebral palsy. Although this was mentioned more than once throughout the story I still felt like it was added dead weight. Unnecessary. While I´m not against including characters with certain disabilities… I´m not for including a disability for the sake of drama. Harper´s cerebral palsy did not affect the character nor the story in any way.
- The Hero wasn´t convincing. I´m all for screw – up Heroes to see the light but for me, Rhen didn´t come across as genuine even when he saw the light.
- The story, as a whole, felt a little flat and it also felt like it was all over the place. This is a fairy tale retelling. I should be sitting on the edge of my seat from start to finish. I should have suffered with and for the characters and I should have lived through their personal hell. I should have, but I didn´t.
This might sound confusing but… I didn´t think `A Curse So Dark And Lonely` was a terrible read. It wasn´t what I´m normally used to and it certainly wasn´t what I had expected. I´m sad to say that this story didn´t touch me the way I hoped it would.
Would I recommend this read? For fans of ACOTAR, absolutely. For fans of fairy tale retellings, yes. If you´re picky ( like me ) then, no.
Would I buy this book? Probably not.
The Cover – 5 stars: I fell in love with the cover the moment I spotted it on Netgalley.
The Story – 3 stars: A little flat. A tiny bit scattered. I liked it but would have like it more if there was a little more structure and depth.
The Characters – 3 stars: I´m torn. The main characters were strong but they had sides to them that either didn´t fit or didn´t feel genuine. I liked them but I also didn´t feel enough for them. The sub characters were great, though.
My emotional state after finishing this read: Not impressed.
I´m giving `A Curse So Dark And Lonely` by author Brigid Kemmerer 3 out of 5 stars.