Monday, September 7, 2015

Review: Princess of Thorns by Stacey Jay


Princess of Thorns by Stacey JayPrincess of Thorns
by Stacey Jay
December 9, 2014
400 pages


Goodreads Summary:
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?


Review

Princess of Thorns is a book I've been dying to read ever since its release. This fairy tale retelling of the after in happily-ever-after was compelling and unique. Even though the story felt odd at times, I still genuinely enjoyed it. 
 
The story was as much about Aurora and Niklaas as it was about their quest to freeing the people from a most dreadful fate. The two of them had a very crappy first encounter but temporarily put aside their differences to work together. With Aurora dressed up as a boy and going by the name Ror, Niklaas never questioned her identity. As they raced against time to save her brother and stop the evil plans of the ogre queen, they share their outlook in life and re-evaluate what they already know. Slowly and carefully the hostility melted away and they became great mates. But of course Aurora fears how Niklaas would react when he inevitably discovers the truth. It was very amusing watching the way Niklaas behaved and talked thinking Ror is a boy. I want to point out that the content of their conversation sometimes got very mature. For the most part they talked indirectly but if you get their innuendos, you'll understand. All the seduction talks sounded a little inappropriate but I loved that they were able to discuss such matters openly. Aurora does not shy away or back down.

Both characters were daft when it came to love. Believing Ror to be a boy, Niklaas spoke very loosely in front of her. This causes Aurora to conclude that Niklaas would never love someone as unladylike as her. Either way she was always too consumed by the thought of her curse ruining those she loves and the need to save her people to notice the change in both their feelings. I believe she was on the right path when she mused to herself "And isn't caring and friendship what makes a marriage work..." (p. 155).  Niklaas was infuriating with his arrogant thinking. He fancied himself an expert in women yet he couldn't even tell Ror was Aurora. It took the two of them an awfully long time (too long!) to realize they loved each other as more than friends. But they did make quite the bickering pair.

The ogre queen chapters were eerie but excellent. I had the shivers when I was reading her chapters. Rarely do we get to see inside the mind of a villain and a conflicted one at that. What must it be like to be a monster with feelings. It's fascinating with a side of goosebumps. "Bravery isn't the absence of fear but the willingness to stay the course in spite of it." (p.240). Ironic that such enlightening words came from the source of all evil in the story.

Stacey Jay's writing is beautiful and captivating, I want more. I will definitely be supporting whatever work she comes up with next and hopefully we get something soon!

4 Cats

10 comments:

  1. I really liked her spin on Romeo and Juliet in her duology she wrote a few years ago, I think I would like this as well.
    So happy you do and wonderful review!

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    1. I've heard great things but I have yet to pick them up! No doubt you loved them though ;)

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  2. I started this a while back. I should pick it up again. Thanks for the reminder!

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    1. How come you put it down? I hope you finish it soon :D

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  3. I'm glad you liked this one. I enjoyed it a lot. Definitely a good retelling with good characters. Great review!
    Cassi @ My Thoughts Literally

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    1. It was different but definitely still good~

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  4. Aw, the romance in this sounds so cute! It's kinda weird, but I do enjoy books where the girls crossdress haha. Nice review, and I'll be adding this to my to-read books!

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    1. Don't worry, it's not weird and I totally get that! I love a good story where the girl disguises herself. It makes for a wonderful surprise when the truth is out ;)

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  5. I have been wondering about this one and I think I really need to add it to the wish list! I like the "girl dressed as a boy" trope and I love bickering pairs!
    Great review Eileen!

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    1. It's one of my favourite tropes too! I hope you'll love it Pili and thank you always for the thoughtful comments <3

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