The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
The Folk of the Air, book one
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2018
ARC owned in personal collection from BEA 2017
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.
Oh, how do I love my dark faeries. And no one does dark faeries quite as well as Holly Black.
For about six months this book was lost in a pile of books I'd gotten at the Book Expo. Just lingering on the floor in my "library room" forgotten. I cannot believe it took until the book was actually published for me to remember exactly how excited I was that Holly Black was going back to writing the dark fae that I LOVED so much in her earliest books!! (If you haven't read her Modern Faerie Tales series, start with Tithe)
After so much hype online in the last few months as bookstagrammers have been absolutely lauding this book I finally convinced myself that since I owned the ARC I was not stepping outside of my reading challenge parameters and allowed myself to dive in. *happy sigh*
Jude is the type of strong/fragile female character I love the most. She is weak, technically, in the land of the Fae. She recognizes her weakness and works to overcome it in whatever ways she possibly can, using all of the tools - smarts, manipulations, physical strength - that she can pull into her arsenal. AND SHE LARGELY SUCCEEDS. Seeing a character who has tremendous odds to overcome gain even the smallest victories just makes my heart sing. And Holly Black is a master at weaving from a scene where she is bullied and made small right into one where she outmaneuvers whatever foe she faces just then.
I cannot wait for the second book, The Wicked King, due out in 2019.
Recommended for readers who like dark fantasy and especially dark fae.