Book Review: The Cruel Prince by Holly Black


This is probably one of the most hyped books of 2018 that I have come across in the blogging community and now I can understand why. Everything in this world of the Fair Folk is dark, twisty, creepy, dramatic and kept me confused every step of the way.

The story starts off with two brutal murders and mortal twins Jude and Taryn are taken alongwith their Fae sister Vivi to Elfhame by the redcap general Madoc. But they all grow up in the land of the Folk with different ambtions. Vivi has not forgotten her childhood in the mortal lands and would love to return one day. Taryn wants to belong among the Fae and would love to keep her head down, behave properly and hopefully one day, marry one of the Folk. But Jude, the POV we get to know this story from, wants to be a knight, wants to be better than the wicked Fae and have a higher purpose in life.

There are lots of other Fae characters we encounter here. The princes and princesses of the realm notably – the youngest prince Cardan and his gang who bully Jude endlessly, Prince Dain who is most likely to be the next High King and Prince Balekin who is the eldest but cruel and weak and insecure. We also see how the Folk treat and view the humans – as lowly mortals who are only good to serve and exist for the entertainment of the Fae.

This book surprises you on every page. Just when you think you understand a character, they go ahead and do something exactly opposite and you have no clue what’s happening. There is not a single character here is exactly straightforward or likeable. That’s why this review has been difficult for me to write – how did I enjoy a book when I didn’t like any of the characters. But I truly did have fun reading this book and am very interested in the sequel – even if just to know if there is a possibility of an unlikely romance. The ending just hit me in the face and I had no idea it was coming. And even after finishing it, I’m still not sure who the “Cruel” Prince from the title is because we are spoiled for choices.

Rating: ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

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