Children can have a cruel, absolute sense of justice. Children can kill a monster and feel quite proud of themselves. A girl can look at her brother and believe they’re destined to be a knight and a bard who battle evil. She can believe she’s found the thing she’s been made for.
Hazel lives with her brother, Ben, in the strange town of Fairfold where humans and fae exist side by side. The faeries’ seemingly harmless magic attracts tourists, but Hazel knows how dangerous they can be, and she knows how to stop them. Or she did, once.
At the center of it all, there is a glass coffin in the woods. It rests right on the ground and in it sleeps a boy with horns on his head and ears as pointed as knives. Hazel and Ben were both in love with him as children. The boy has slept there for generations, never waking.
Until one day, he does…
As the world turns upside down, Hazel tries to remember her years pretending to be a knight. But swept up in new love, shifting loyalties, and the fresh sting of betrayal, will it be enough?
Plot: This book has a fairly predictable fantasy plot line. It’s the kind of book (at least for me) that takes a really long time to get into. I did get into the plot near the end, but it took a while. One thing that is interesting (possibly my favorite part) about this book is that it takes place in a town that know about fae and magic. This book isn’t about the main character stumbling into the world of magic, she is already in it. And not only that, but the fae are clearly evil. Some people do romanticize them, but not Hazel. She knows how dark and scary they can really be. But the plot line itself isn’t entirely original. There’s a mysterious fae prince that they can trust and an evil fae king that is trying to kill the prince. The story pretty much revolves around trying to save the prince and defeat the king- or at least stop him from hurting more people.
Characters: Hazel- I did really like Hazel! She seemed pretty strong and sure of herself. She’s the kind of girl that bounces from guy to guy and even though many view that as a slutty or bad behavior, I think it’s a interesting quality about her. She doesn’t mean to hurt anyone, she just likes to kiss and have fun. I think Hazel is an interesting sway from the usual innocent girl heroine. She’s strong, independent, and tries to figure things out on her own. She’s not afraid to go up against her parents, her friends, and even the fae themselves. There’s something about her to admire.
Cover: I don’t love the cover, but I don’t hate it either. I think it’s just a very basic cover that they could’ve done more with.
Closing Thoughts: Honestly, I think this book was only okay. I have heard many good things about Holly Black and I am still hoping to try more of her books. (I have The Coldest Girl in Coldtown in my bookshelf waiting for me to read it!) But unfortunately, this book didn’t really make me fall in love with Holly Black. It was good enough that I enjoyed it and I did read it fairly quickly, but there was just something missing. There wasn’t that element that changes a book from alright to amazing. I do think she is a good writer, so I’m hoping her other books will be much better. I give this book a C because to me, it’s just average. Not good, not bad, just like the cover.
Where to find Holly Black: