Author: Rosamund Hodge
Series: Stand Alone
Published By: Balzer & Bray (January 28, 2013)
Source: ARC Copy Provided by the Author (in exchange for an honest review)
Genre: YA Retelling
My Rating: 4.5 Stars!!
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.
Have I mentioned before that the tale of Beauty and the Beast has always been my favorite, whether it is the classic Disney tale, a retelling or something darker? Because it is, hands down without a doubt my very favorite. Who could ever resist a girl way ahead of her time? One that is smart and witty and loves to read? One that thinks outside of the box and doesn't judge a book (or person) by the cover? One that follows her heart?
Nyx was exactly that character I was looking for and hoping she would be. In fact can I just say that I loved this book? The unexpected darkness of it, the mystery, the sweet budding romance and the very fact that it blends mythology with a classic tale and the fact that the author takes it all and makes it very much her own. Very much a unique twist on an old tale.
This was beautifully dark and I quickly became caught up in the magic of it.
The author truly has created something unlike anything else I have ever read. It was easy to get lost in the mythical imaginative world that she created and not want to be found again.
*All thoughts and opinions are my own and were not influenced by the author or publisher. I was not compensated for this review.*