The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

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.

Jude was seven years old when her parents were murdered and she and her two sisters were stolen away to live in the treacherous High Court of Faerie. Ten years later, Jude wants nothing more than to belong there, despite her mortality. But many of the fey despise humans. Especially Prince Cardan, the youngest and wickedest son of the High King.

To win a place at the Court, she must defy him–and face the consequences.

In doing so, she becomes embroiled in palace intrigues and deceptions, discovering her own capacity for bloodshed. But as civil war threatens to drown the Courts of Faerie in violence, Jude will need to risk her life in a dangerous alliance to save her sisters, and Faerie itself.”

-Synopsis taken from Goodreads

Hey guys! Meaghan here again with another review! This time, I read The Cruel Prince, one of the most hyped up books for January 2018, with my discord server’s book club!

“If I cannot be better than them, I will become so much worse.”

Stars (Out of 10): 8.5/10 Stars

Favorite Character: This bounced around the entire book, but by the end, Jude

Spoiler Free: To start, I’m going to admit I really did not care for the Tithe series at all. I don’t remember the why behind it, but it just didn’t click with me. So fair enough, I was quite worried and cautious about starting this book, and as the hype rose around this book more and more, my excitement for it did not.

In the end, it was chosen as the book club book in the discord server I am in, and it was the Fairyloot January book. Without these two reasons, I may have skipped this book entirely. I am SO glad I did not!

It blew away any expectations I did have, and I didn’t see any connection between this book and my feelings for Tithe. It snatched my interest and kept it, through every twist and turn, every betrayal and backstab. It felt true to the world of Faerie, but still created characters to cheer for and love.

From the main character to all the small side characters, each felt fairly developed, and fairly realistic. We have Jude, a mortal grown in a cruel world by a cruel “father,” and admittedly this affected how she grew up as well. But we also have her twin, someone who accepted Faerie in a different way. In addition, all of the Fae live up to this cruel idea while still having a personality around that. They have their flaws, and this book shows them sticking to them regardless of how much we hope they’ll be “good.”

Additionally, while the world is a bit confusing in the beginning, it clears up quickly, and the fact you don’t remember the names and relations right off the bat is totally okay, as you’re often reminded of them in a way that is helpful, not repetitive or overbearing.


Lastly, the plot is absolutely fantastic, and is constantly packed with action and intrigue. There’s never a lull where I wanted to put the book down and take a break, and the pacing overall was much better than some of the other books I’ve read recently.

Careful! Spoilers beyond this point!

Spoilers: I think my mind is still blown from all the twists and turns this book took. I’m also super glad it didn’t shove them all at the end, and rather spaced them periodically so we actually got to see how characters understood and dealt with them.

To be honest, this installment could’ve been an entire trilogy, but I’m super curious to see where this continues from. Will we see all seven years and how the transition later comes, or just the year and a day Jude was promised to have power over Cardan?

Also, lemme just say I am on board for that complicated relationship, and I am glad that it is not all resolved between them just because they kissed once. There’s so many complex feelings there, and I’m happy it seems like Black is taking time to explore them!


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