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I'm reading The cruel prince ...

Discussion in 'Novels & Stories' started by Sarah.moore, Sep 15, 2020.

  1. Sarah.moore

    Sarah.moore Dreamer

    Hi guys
    So I'm reading this book name The cruel prince by holy black . Its a first of three books . I read the first one and except this main guy character prince cardan i didn't like the rest so much . I mean the world is kind of messy , its kind of a fairy world which i think needs a lots of description and details but it doesn't have any . And the story is not that great .
    So has anyone read this book or the rest of it ?
    I would love to hear your opinion on this book and if its worth continuing or not
  2. Hi Sarah,

    I read The Cruel Prince when it first came out. I should say that I am a fan of Holly Black's work overall. So I'm a bit biased. :)

    If you are asking if book two and three of the series are worth reading, I'd say, if you didn't like the first, then probably no. . Especially if you didn't like the main characters Jude and Taryn and the dynamic between them, as the books revolve around the two of them (and Cardan and Locke) for the most part. Though in one of the later books she introduces a secondary character who ends up being one of my favorites in the series, but it's not a very large role.

    I'm surprised you thought it lacked detail. Holly Black is usually very generous with her details though, since she writes in this world a lot, perhaps this book is shy of that a bit? I know that at least one of her older books was set in the same fairy world and that there are some crossover characters (from the fairy world) from that book, but I found the Cruel Prince to have plenty of description (not on a lit-fic level, of course) and overall I find she stays very true to fairy lore, which itself is messy. I didn't find it to have any of those faults, but that's me. :)

    All that said, it's not all together memorable to me two years on. I do remember many of her secondary characters well: Madoc, Vivi, Oak, the Roach, the Bomb and the Ghost — and I found the inciting event to be a really strong hook that carried me well into it.
    Sarah.moore likes this.
  3. Sarah.moore

    Sarah.moore Dreamer

    Oh so maybe that's the problem . Maybe if i read the other book of hers with a fairy world i can understand this one better ... ? Please tell me it's name if you remembered it by any chance ...
    Did you read a lot of books on fairy world subject ?
  4. Well, I wouldn't say that it will make it that much easier to understand, but I believe the book I'm thinking of is called, Tithe: A Modern Fairy Tale.

    See, what I liked about The Cruel Prince was that it was about human sisters who end up being raised in the fairy world and who have to define their roles in world that doesn't see them. The Cruel Prince is a tale based on the fey of old – the ones, like Red Caps, who thirst for blood and those who have their way with humans, playing tricks, telling riddles, shape shifting, compelling and ordering and stealing their way to power and who believe they are far superior because they are immortal. Black doesn't rehash that from the ground up but I feel like she paints a dark and gorgeous world there. The fey are strange and otherworldly and she captures their strengths, their customs, and their abilities, and shows the difference between mortal and immortal clearly.

    But I loved it because it's a book centered more on family and those relationships than it is about that fey world.

    She does explain a little more of the world in Tithe, but I don't think reading any one book will make this world more understandable in a direct way. I never thought of it before but I suppose it's the combination of all the books I've read about the fae realm that made it easier to slide into this one. Hard to say though.

    You'd have to be clearer about what confuses you in it for me to say if any other book would help you understand it. In truth, since your issue with it were more than that one, this book may just not be your thing, which is more than ok too! :)

    I won't mention the many "classics" or highly rated books of fantasy and sci-fi that I cannot abide by because, due to one thing or another, I cannot get through them, but believe me, I have them too. We all do!
    Sarah.moore likes this.
  5. Hawthorn

    Hawthorn Dreamer

    I enjoyed The Cruel Prince, and the following books in the series. But I was already a fan of Holly Black - it was her book Tithe that first got me into faery fantasy fiction, which is what I now write.

    Something I liked about this series is that Jude is a bit different to the usual protagonist in these stories, in that she is driven by personal desire for power, rather than an 'altruistic' goal. In some ways she can be seen as not very nice, which is refreshing when so many protagonists are a bit bland and don't have well developed 'flaws'.

    But I think if you didn't enjoy the first book, there may not be much point continuing - unless you were able to borrow them from the library or something.
    Sarah.moore likes this.
  6. Meep

    Meep Acolyte

    I'm generally a fan of Holly Black, but I couldn't get into the Folk of the Air series (The Cruel Prince, etc). If you're into the idea of modern fairies and whatnot but not that specific book, you might like her other one, The Darkest Part of the Forest, better. I did. (I also found it a really interesting read; it was published ~10 years after Tithe, and it really shows how much she's grown as a writer.)
    Sarah.moore likes this.

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