The Cruel Prince

A One Paragraph Book Review

The Cruel Prince

It won’t come as a surprise to any of you who are following along that I don’t like flowery, over descriptive prose. It’s not that I don’t appreciate an author’s careful description of their fantastical world-building, rather that I don’t appreciate superfluous scenes that seem to exist only so said author can spend pages waxing poetic about characters’ ball gowns. Words must have purpose, they can’t just be pretty. Enter Holly Black and The Cruel Prince: this, ladies and gentlemen, is what “lush” and “decadent” writing looks like. TCP is a delicious example of how vibrant description can work to enhance equally delicious characters and riveting plot to create a story that is not only worth reading, but worth savoring.

The Raven Boys

A One Paragraph Book Review

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My husband asked me recently why I don’t review books I actually like and I argued that I have reviewed books I like; I LIKE most of the books I’ve read in the last year, I just don’t LOVE them. The problem is Maggie Stiefvater’s The Raven Boys. It’s ruined me for other books which, admittedly, is a little odd considering that I wasn’t all that interested in the overall plot of the book (Finding the burial place of a Welsh king? Meh.). The characters, though. I would happily read an entire book about Ronan folding his laundry. Gansey and Blue and Adam and Ronan are the kind of characters that make you angry with the world for not having seen fit to make them into real people. They are lovely and, for better or worse, I doubt I will ever love another book quite as much as I love this one.

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The Wrath and the Dawn

A One Paragraph Book Review

ThewrathandthedawnI get excited about books, sometimes I get REALLY excited, and Renée Ahdieh’s The Wrath and the Dawn was one of those REALLY exciting books. Until I read it (or really, didn’t read it, I couldn’t finish the whole thing). Maybe it’s my own fault; I came in with high hopes of complex characters and conflicting emotions, as a girl destined to die in the morning, not only survives her death sentence, but falls in love with her would-be executioner. But, I just… sigh. If two people are going to fall in love, and I’m expected to care about it, this affection has to have a basis beyond one of them having “kind, velvet brown eyes of soft, chocolate kindness” or some similar nonsense; if you’re looking for a fun weekend read, I’d skip this one.

 

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Jude the Obscure

*A One Paragraph Book Review

JudetheObscureWhen I outlined the rules for the One Paragraph Book Reviews, I said I would stick to books I’d read within the last year. Unless they were great…or terrible (I’ll let you figure out which side this book falls on). This book was as good as one might expect from a novel that opens with a boy (Jude) being tricked into marrying a pretty country girl when she pretends to be pregnant (because that’s always the best way to start a relationship), and closes with Jude’s (probably) son murdering his half siblings and then killing himself. We’re not even going to mention the weird “not-marriage” of Jude to his second cousin (because five sentences is not NEARLY enough to touch on that subject). If you think that all of this weirdness would result in a halfway interesting plot (or at least the occasional scene), you would be wrong.

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Not Even Bones

*A One Paragraph Book Review

NotEvenBonesRebecca Schaeffer’s 2018 Not Even Bones was a gift from my husband, given after he’d spent several weeks listening to my lamenting that science fiction (paranormal, westerns, steampunk, what have you) and fantasy don’t mix nearly enough. Enter Not Even Bones: billed as Dexter meets This Savage Song, this debut novel is both creepy and weirdly captivating (I never thought of myself as someone who would enjoy reading a book about magical creatures being dissected, but- hey, here we are). While I was fascinated by both the characters and the plot, I did find myself wishing there was a little….more… to the story. But I guess that’s what sequels are for.

 

 

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