Monday, April 7, 2014

Review: Cruel Beauty

Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge
Published by Blazer + Bray
Genre: YA Fairy Tale
$17.99 (US Hardback)
342 pages

What it's about:
Graceling meets Beauty and the Beast in this sweeping fantasy about one girl's journey to fulfill her destiny and the monster who gets in her way-by stealing her heart.

Based on the classic fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, Cruel Beauty is a dazzling love story about our deepest desires and their power to change our destiny.

Since birth, Nyx has been betrothed to the evil ruler of her kingdom-all because of a foolish bargain struck by her father. And since birth, she has been in training to kill him.

With no choice but to fulfill her duty, Nyx resents her family for never trying to save her and hates herself for wanting to escape her fate. Still, on her seventeenth birthday, Nyx abandons everything she's ever known to marry the all-powerful, immortal Ignifex. Her plan? Seduce him, destroy his enchanted castle, and break the nine-hundred-year-old curse he put on her people.

But Ignifex is not at all what Nyx expected. The strangely charming lord beguiles her, and his castle-a shifting maze of magical rooms-enthralls her.

As Nyx searches for a way to free her homeland by uncovering Ignifex's secrets, she finds herself unwillingly drawn to him. Even if she could bring herself to love her sworn enemy, how can she refuse her duty to kill him? With time running out, Nyx must decide what is more important: the future of her kingdom, or the man she was never supposed to love.

My thoughts:
I've grown weary of fairy tale retellings. I have read so many bad ones but can't seem to help myself. Every time I hear there is a new fairy tale retelling, I will read it. Thankfully this one was actually pretty good.

Nyx is the heroin of the story, and she is pretty despicable. She's lived a hard life knowing that she isn't loved by her father, and will grow up to marry a demon. I don't blame her for being bitter. And that's what I loved about her. Because this is a Beauty and the Beast retelling, we all know that Nyx is going to fall in love with "the beast" in this case, Ignefix, the Demon Prince. I found it believable that a bitter, angry girl would fall in love with a charming demon.

Besides actually finding the love story believable, I also enjoyed the new twist to the classic story. There was still all the classic parts of the story, but a lot of new ones that were interesting. A little confusing at points, but still interesting. It kept me reading and entertained.

My rating: 4/5 stars


  1. I'm the same way with retellings. I've run into quite a few not-so-good ones, but I can't help but love them! I personally loved Cruel Beauty, because of the characters who weren't quite good or bad. Beyond that, the world building was great. Love your review!

  2. I've heard bad things about this one. Mainly that Nyx was just to bitter and angry but I hear good things about Ignefix and so I shall read it for him. Plus I'm sick of the Beauty who's all overly caring and shit. ;)


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