Welcome to this week’s Fiction Friday. Today I am reviewing the YA fairytale retelling Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge.
Synopsis from Goodreads:
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.
5 out of 5 stars.
Let me just say first up that I love this cover. The rose really gives me that Beauty and the Beast feel and I love how the spiral staircase is threaded through it.
Okay, now to the book itself. Since the minute I read the synopsis of this book I had to have it. I love, love, love fairytale rellings and Cruel Beauty didn’t disappoint! In fact, it surpassed my expectations.
This book! I just want to hold it tightly to me forever. I just love loving a book this much.
It is books like this that make reading so addictive.
Cruel Beauty was a retelling of Beauty and the Beast with a twist – a Greek twist. I love Greek mythology too, so combining the two was pure genius on Hodge’s part.
I loved everything about this book. I loved Nyx. Oh, Nyx. What a wonderful character. So strong, so brave, so headstrong and determined, and oh so real.
And Ignifex. Hats off to you Hodge for making me swoon over a monster. I truly felt as conflicted over him as Nyx did.
And then there is the house. How I loved that magical, shifting house. It was a character unto itself and I loved discovering all the different rooms within it.
Cruel beauty was full of so many twist, so many edge of your seat moments. It was thrilling and nail biting and romantic. And dark. There are some creepy scenes involving demons, but overall it wasn’t too intense.
I cannot recommend this book enough. Read it, I swear you’ll love it too – that is if you love fairytale retellings with a dark edge, romance and Greek Mythology.
You can add it to your Goodreads here.