“Most of all, I hate you because I think of you. Often. It’s disgusting, and I can’t stop.”
I was a bit hesitant on The Cruel Prince, because while I was scrolling through my update feed, I saw a bunch of people comment on how it was too hyped up. I don’t even know how long this has been on, taken off, only to be put back on my to-read shelf, but I am extremely happy that I decided to give it a try. The Cruel Prince is one of my favorite books, and I’m definitely looking to order a copy for myself.
I can’t explain how much I love the characters. Okay, Jude was a good character throughout, but the entire thing at the end with the crowning bothered me a lot because it wasn’t the outcome I wanted to occur. Throughout the story, she quickly develops towards almost an anti-hero? She does everything she can for her family and herself, despite the cost towards others around her. Out of personal preference, I preferred her at the beginning of the story, but I can say that she’s an amazing character from the beginning to the end of The Cruel Prince. Besides Jude, Cardan was my absolute favorite. I loved him developing from being cruel at the beginning, and throughout the story, we see reasons for this and how maybe he could be a good person on the inside. In the beginning, I thought he was going to be the typical mean antagonist, but I was completely surprised by everything that happened.
The other characters were mostly average. People I thought were going to be a side character that really has no relevance on the story (Madoc) turned out to trigger an important event in the story. Basically, everyone I thought was a “hero” suddenly has aspects about them that made them villain-like and vice versa with the “villains”. With Valerian, I didn’t like him too much, because it felt like he was just there as a side character to further inflict harm on Jude, but I still don’t know if I really like what happened to him in the end. I would have liked to have seen more insight on him, but I didn’t mind too much because he wasn’t that big of a character. I also found Jude’s sisters dull and just there for no reason. They were boring and they weren’t ambitious at all, whether it was to defend themselves or others close to them. I felt like they both had no real purpose in them, other than Vivi bringing Jude into the human world only to realize that she really doesn’t fit there anymore.
The plot itself is exciting (having the royalty fight for the throne), but I wouldn’t consider it anything new or different. I think that the characters and world-building really improved upon the plot, making it a book that was nearly impossible to put down. I enjoyed the world of Faerie, but I’m not really familiar with ACOTAR and other books in the series, so I’m not sure if it was really good compared to it, similar, or I guess bad. I honestly did not expect myself to like The Cruel Prince this much, but I’m extremely excited for The Wicked King now.
I want to say more about this, but for some reason, I can’t think of much other than the fact that I would recommend this book to anyone even if you don’t like fantasy at all. It’s a huge improvement considering what I expected, and I think that it was worth all the hype it went through.