Princess of Thorns by Stacey Jay
Goodreads Book Profile
Published: December 2014
ARC via Netgalley
Game of Thrones meets the Grimm’s fairy tales in this twisted, fast-paced romantic fantasy-adventure about Sleeping Beauty’s daughter, a warrior princess who must fight to reclaim her throne.
Though she looks like a mere mortal, Princess Aurora is a fairy blessed with enhanced strength, bravery, and mercy yet cursed to destroy the free will of any male who kisses her. Disguised as a boy, she enlists the help of the handsome but also cursed Prince Niklaas to fight legions of evil and free her brother from the ogre queen who stole Aurora’s throne ten years ago.
Will Aurora triumph over evil and reach her brother before it’s too late? Can Aurora and Niklaas break the curses that will otherwise forever keep them from finding their one true love?
Of Beast and Beautywas good. Princess of Thorns was better.
From the author of the Beauty and the Beast retelling comes a jaw-dropping, girl power (ish?) and cross-dressing gift of a novel. The cross dressing? To save her bother and get men to see her as something other than to marry. The girl power? Because she’s stopping at nothing and proving that hells to the yes she’s just as strong as a man. Jaw dropping? Because they’re fighting and humanity and immortality and darkness and a guy who is not book boyfriend material but totally you need to be my best friend now right after I hit you with a frying pan for how you objectify women. You know what I mean? Who know I could actually like a guy who objectifies woman. If I ignore the objectify thing. (Don’t worry y’all. Our main girl totally shows him what’s up.) So what was this book about in my own words?
This book was about a quest to save the world, to find one’s self, and to maybe try real hard not to fall in love with a boy (who has a swan issue) who is intent on marrying her, although he doesn’t know that she is her. Confused yet? Overall, it’s about empowerment and hope and what it means to save a life. This Sleeping Beauty (Grimm version, of course) sequel follows the beauty’s daughter, Aurora. Her mother killed herself to grant Aurora her fairy gifts. Her gifts make her fierce, brave, strong and compassionate. It also has the unfortunate pattern of sending anyone she kisses into being completely and utterly under her control. This part of her gifts, Aurora hate. Set out to find her brother who’s been captured by the evil queen she runs into Prince Niklaas who becomes her side kick. A sexist, amusing, pig of a side kick. He’s also cursed to turn into a swan like his eleven brothers before him if he doesn’t marry. (YAY FOR FAIRY TALES)
Onto what I think. I adore the relationship that Niklaas and Ror have before he knows that she is, in fact, not male. They’re like two brother and friends and partners in crime and their conversations are some that I’m pretty sure that I’ve had with some of my friends before. The characters are well formed. For example, Ror eats like a man and pretty much acts like one and only most of it is part of her disguise. She’ll do anything for the one’s she loves. She is capable of making mistakes and recognizing them and learning from them. I hate it when a character doesn’t acknowledge their mistakes. Makes me feel a bit stabby. She’s just so freaking noble.
“I’ve already destroyed one strong, clever, beautiful boy. I won’t destroy another” (ARC).
And then some of the things that the princy dude says. . .
“ “And sometimes we’re the ones who do the breaking”, I say, cutting off her protest, “But that’s what searching for love is like. You keep pushing on, breaking and being broken, until you find the person you want to hold safe, the only one who knows how to keep you in one piece” “ (ARC).
I guess my main point in this is that this is a book worth reading. Keep your expectations even and wait till the last fight. The last fight is totally the most kick-ass.
Quick note. Any of y’all heard I Wanna Be Your Man by Endeverafter? It’s basically the Prince’s theme song through the majority of the novel. If not, the songs awesome. Go forth and listen.