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.
I am loving all the retelling of old fairy tales. It’s no secret that the Lunar Chronicles are some of my favorites, but I’ve been seeing this trend a lot more lately. (I can’t wait for the live-action version of Beauty & the Beast starring two of my favorite Emma’s ~ Watson & Thompson! Squee!) But back to the book… I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was magical, but not in an “I’m-living-in-an-enchanted-castle” sort of way. It was darker, but not scary-dark. I thought it quite well done. I liked how the “Beauty” was not all pure-motived and naive, but had flaws in her character.
Would I recommend this to fellow book lovers? Yes!
Would I recommend this to my teenage daughter? Already have.
5 of 5 stars