Review – The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

Title The Cruel Prince

Author 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.

Release Date January 2, 2018

Initial Thoughts

It’s Christmas Eve and this is my gift to you. I finally read The Cruel Prince. Ok, ok. I read it in November but I didn’t put my pen to paper on my thoughts until December, and by that point, I had already scheduled posts for most of the month. So, here we are on Christmas Eve and I am presenting everyone with my compiled thoughts on this book.

Some Things I Liked

  • Plot twists and betrayals. I’ll be honest, when I started this book, I liked totally different characters than I did at the end. I won’t say who but I really liked a certain Duarte sister and red haired Fae. BUT THEY ARE THE WORST! So, props to Holly Black for keeping me guessing.
  • Cardan. I absolutely loathed him in the beginning of the book, actually, for most of the book. But, in a weird way, he wormed his way into my heart and became my favorite character. Wormed is the absolute best word for it, because he’s still pretty insufferable.
  • The Ghost. If anyone does anything to him, I WILL BE UPSET! He’s my favorite and nobody better take that away from me!

One Thing I Wasn’t Crazy About

  • The bullying and cruelty. I know cruel is in the title of the book but I didn’t care for the constant streams of abuse all the characters took on all sides. Why is everyone so awful??

Series Value

I already read the rest of the series. All the books (novella and new book included), but I’d have kept reading anyway. This wasn’t my favorite book but it has a compelling story with characters that I want to know more about.

Final Thoughts

I liked this book a lot. I didn’t love it and I was left feeling BETRAYED by the ending. But, I’m glad I finally took the plunge and read this series.


Recommendations for Further Reading

  • The Wicked King by Holly Black – trust me, this is the best of the series. Keep reading.
  • The Iron King by Julie Kagawa – if you enjoyed the fantasy and contemporary blend as well as traversing back and forth between the worlds, try this series.

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