By: Holly Black
# 1 in the Folk of the Air series | 370 pages | Pub. 2018
Cruel Prince At a Glance
- Overall Rating: ★★★★
- Dude Ranking: If he were in modern times he would pop his collar
- Steaminess: More like a cool breeze
- Emotional: This book trains you to not have emotions
- Brutality: If Game of Thrones was set in Faerie
Pairs Well With
Salt N’ Burn
- 1 oz Fireball Whisky
- ½ oz Ginger liqueur
- 1 tsp agave syrup
- Rim: salt, cinnamon and chili powder
Beware. Spoilers are coming…
I am disappointed in myself that I have failed as YA reader and lover of fae books and have somehow not read a Holly Black book before this. I need to pull my sh*t together and read all her other things pronto cuz this lady is queen of words and world building.
I appreciated this book because pretty much every single person, except for Oak, was terrible. It’s like a fae Wuthering Heights where none of the characters have a redeeming factor and it was refreshing. Everyone betrays and kills everyone (of course Jess likes this book, it’s subtly brutal). Cruel Prince was a breath of fresh air because I didn’t have to worry about getting emotional about people dying because I really disliked them all.
And all the characters were really dumb… Jude doesn’t realize Locke is a horrible person who is hooking up with her twin sister (bitch move, btw), Carden doesn’t figure out Jude is a spy and then ultimately that she is betrays him? And Jude making a deal with with Dain. No. I just wanted to have the girl’s head examined at that point to see if she lost her brain somewhere along the way.
“I want to win. I do not yearn to be their equal. In my heart, I yearn to best them.” – Jude
That being said I did enjoy some of the brief Aelin “I want to kick everyone’s ass” yet still vulnerable vibes I got from Jude. I actually respect the girl for sticking around and trying to be the baddest bitch in all of Faerie but at some point you gotta realize everyone in this land is straight up evil and you should GTFO and go be with normal people again. Vivi might be the only sane person in this book. Big sisters always know best.
I can’t wait for the next book to see what awful things go down between Jude, Carden, Taryn and everyone else. The drama is going to be reaaal and I’m hoping it will be like a Real Housewives showdown and I’m so there for it. For once I really don’t even want a romance between the main characters, I just want Holly to give me more cruel, irredeemable wickedness.
I was super excited to read another Holly Black because Tithe was the first fantasy I remember reading.
While I appreciate Jude’s ferocity, girl is not smart. She might be the worst spy ever. I don’t know how many red flags you need, but how about don’t date your enemy’s BFF and then go alone with him to his house. Did I mention his big ass labyrinth and the fact that he lives alone? If you did not see that Locke was sketchy then I legitimately pity you.
She goes on to accidentally kill someone and stuff him under her bed? Ok, so he was a dick and needed to die, but why don’t you just scream? Also, if she is such a great spy, how were people able to sneak up on her so many times? Let’s just say she is no Catalia or Olina…
I love a good anti-hero and was just waiting for Carden to step up and be this awesome guy. Nope. Not happening. He did provide me with some amusement since I was trying to decipher every move he made or look he gave. Apparently, I stressed in vain. He is just a kid who thought she was hot because she kicked his ass. Lame.
Black is a great writer and I fully support all of the intrigue and twists that she scattered throughout the book. In the end, I kind of want the sequel to go back to Roiben and Kaye because those two are the best. My favorite part of the whole book was them in the tent eating chinese. #Roiben&Kaye4ever
Let us know what you thought of Cruel Prince in the comments!