Book Reviews

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

 🌟 4 stars 🌟

I recently finished reading The Cruel Prince by Holly Black. I haven’t read any of her other novels, so I wasn’t sure what I was getting into with this book. I picked up this book because of the hype and that it has great ratings on Goodreads. I would give this book 4 out of 5 stars.


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 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.

As Jude becomes more deeply embroiled in palace intrigues and deceptions, she discovers her own capacity for trickery and bloodshed. But as betrayal 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.

I am still and probably will always be a fan of books that have action right in the beginning. This book begins with Jude’s parents murders and then brought to live among the fey. After a time skip of ten years, Jude has settled into living among the fey with as much of a sense of normalcy as she can for someone whose foster father is her parent’s murderer and who lives in a world of people that despise her kind.

However, Jude is ambitious and longs for a rightful place in the world of the fey. This book follows Jude’s journey as she does whatever it takes to “earn” her way to power in her eyes. I still have mixed feelings about Jude as I feel that she is more of a morally ambiguous character, but strong-willed and definitely someone that will fight for what she thinks is right. I particularly liked that Jude does not have any powers, she simply gets by by what she has been taught.

As for Prince Cardan, I am torn between loving and hating his character. He is a witty character where many of his lines actually made me laugh, but also a cruel prince (lol) that has done terrible things to others. He is a character that I despise, but I cannot help but also pity a bit with his tragic backstory.

Overall, this was an enjoyable read and I haven’t read a story like it before. I liked that pretty much every character fell into a grey area as I did not feel like anyone was entirely good or entirely evil. Although, I did find the book a bit too predictable with only maybe one of the plot twists surprising me. I will definitely read the sequel still, because I want to know where the series will go from here.

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