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A Curse So Dark and Lonely

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Fall in love break the curseIt once seemed so easy to Prince Rhen the heir to Emberfall Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year over and over he knew he could be saved if a girl fell for him But that was before he learned that at the end of each autumn he would turn into a vicious beast hell bent on destruction That was before he destroyed his castle his family and every last. This is hands down one of the best fairy tale retellings I have ever read I did not have high expectations at all having found Brigid Kemmerer’s Letters to the Lost to be a MEH read please don't curse me but this story hooked me right from the startI even had to check twice to see if Brigid Kemmerer really wrote this because I do not remember her writing style being so elegant and feeling like a lover’s caress Oh myWell look Valentine’s Day is coming up I can’t help but be a little extra romantic or corny Actually I highly recommend buying this as a Valentine’s Day gift for your special someone because the love that is depicted in this story is TRUE and must be shared with the entire universeI'd like to be able to say that I only get this dramatic in prose but alas the way I write is the way I speak Just yesterday a friend was telling me about her boyfriend's unboyfriend like behavior and I gave her a passionate speech about love trust and sacrifice I knew little aboutMaybe I should have given her this book insteadBlog | Youtube | Twitter | Instagram | Google | Bloglovin’

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Shred of hopeNothing has ever been easy for Harper Lacy With her father long gone her mother dying and her brother barely holding their family together while constantly underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy she learned to be tough enough to survive But when she tries to save someone else on the streets of Washington DC she’s instead somehow sucked into Rhen’s cursed worldBreak the curse save the. I'm on the verge of breaking up with YA fantasy Well with the new releases anyway and just sticking to authors that have worked for me And possibly reading YA fantasy that were released in the past because the constant disappointments and anger I feel towards the new ones are slowly decimating my soulThis was a flop for me Here I was expecting to really enjoy this retelling and it just got worse as I read on I could not tell you what happened in the last 100 pages or so I skim read it and I don't even care that I did I tolerated it for 400 pages and that's enough to tell you I was patient enough The annoying thing for me here is that I adore absolutely LOVE Letters to the Lost and More Than We Can Tell by Brigid Kemmerer Those stories were so emotionally hard hitting for me and well written and the characterisation strong But this felt like child's play I cringed on numerous occasions because of how flimsy it felt There was so much lacking when it came to its world building as well as the character development The plot was interesting at first and it took me away to Emberfall and then it became a snooze fest I wasn't convinced by any of it There was no substance strength and no meat to the story I think because it was uite fast faced it missed out on properly developing on those other elementsGoddamn I'm feeling bitter I'm feeling too bitter to think and give examples I really wanted to like this And now I want to cry I'll review it properly whenever Or never Sigh Book 2 for the #TomeTopple readathon Buddy reading with the wonderful Karima 💚 I adore Brigid Kemmerer's other books They've been 5 star reads for me I'm hoping this will be too The Rabbit Effect: Live Longer, Happier, and Healthier with the Groundbreaking Science of Kindness underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy she learned to be tough enough to survive But when she tries to save someone else on the streets of Washington DC she’s instead somehow sucked into Rhen’s cursed worldBreak the curse save the. I'm on the verge of breaking The Rabbit Effect: Live Longer, Happier, and Healthier with the Groundbreaking Science of Kindness up with YA fantasy Well with the new releases anyway and just sticking to authors that have worked for me And possibly reading YA fantasy that were released in the past because the constant disappointments and anger I feel towards the new ones are slowly decimating my soulThis was a flop for me Here I was expecting to really enjoy this retelling and it just got worse as I read on I could not tell you what happened in the last 100 pages or so I skim read it and I don't even care that I did I tolerated it for 400 pages and that's enough to tell you I was patient enough The annoying thing for me here is that I adore absolutely LOVE Letters to the Lost and More Than We Can Tell by Brigid Kemmerer Those stories were so emotionally hard hitting for me and well written and the characterisation strong But this felt like child's play I cringed on numerous occasions because of how flimsy it felt There was so much lacking when it came to its world building as well as the character development The plot was interesting at first and it took me away to Emberfall and then it became a snooze fest I wasn't convinced by any of it There was no substance strength and no meat to the story I think because it was Kokoro: de wegen van het hart uite fast faced it missed out on properly developing on those other elementsGoddamn I'm feeling bitter I'm feeling too bitter to think and give examples I really wanted to like this And now I want to cry I'll review it properly whenever Or never Sigh Book 2 for the #TomeTopple readathon Buddy reading with the wonderful Karima 💚 I adore Brigid Kemmerer's other books They've been 5 star reads for me I'm hoping this will be too

Brigid Kemmerer Æ 6 Download

KingdomA prince A monster A curse Harper doesn’t know where she is or what to believe But as she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land she begins to understand what’s at stake And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm his hope comes flooding back But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall and it will take than a broken curse to save Harper Rhen and his people from utter ru. ‘Twas a buddy read with my bestie Tabi even though she completely left me in the dust hahaRight sothis was an AMAZING La Belle et la Bête retelling And trust me I’ve read half a dozen of them by now Beastly Cruel Beauty A Court of Thorns and Roses Uprooted Hunted Why no I don’t have a problemWhy would you even think that ; I especially enjoyed the fact that like Meagan Spooner’s Hunted we were able to see inside the mind of the beast I think that this book ranks just under Rosamund Hodge’s Cruel Beauty as my favourite retelling of this classic tale 3 Just like Hodge’s interpretation Kemmerer’s has one heck of an opening line “There is blood under my fingernails I wonder how many of my people I’ve killed this time”Doesn’t that just hook you in Unlike most faery tale retellings Kemmerer’s blurs the lines between urban fantasy and high fantasy which admittedly is why I was initially hesitant to pick this book up But you needn’t worry Less than five of the sixty chapters actually take place in our world The novel is almost exclusively set in the parallel land of Emberfall “‘My father is dead my lady My whole family is dead’ He pulls back meeting my gaze but his voice doesn’t change ‘That monster killed them all’”We all know how this tale goes by now Once upon a time a handsome prince lived in a beautiful castle Although he had everything his heart desired the prince was selfish and arrogant One night an unexpected intruder arrived in his chambers seeking to become the future ueen The prince shared a bed with her and turned the woman away Scorned the woman revealed herself as a beautiful enchantress As punishment she cursed the castle and all who lived there After each season she would transform him into a hideous beast unless he could learn to love another and earn their love in return After which the curse would be broken Unfortunately for the prince this is his last season to do so or he would remain a beast for all time Filled with despair and empty of hope he wondered who could ever learn to love a beast “I’d forgotten this How I could never solve anything before How I was something to be shoved into back rooms or left playing lookout in the alley because I never had anything to offer”Harper was a simply lovely protagonist who was so brave kind and caring While she may not have been born a princess she certainly carried herself like one Captured from the streets of Washington DC at eighteen and suffering from a mild case of cerebral palsy when one falls on the mild side of the spectrum one can walk unaided she has a lot going on at home as well Her father left them with a mountain of debt owed to criminals her brother is expected to find a way to pay back that debt and her mother is dying from cancer Needless to say being abducted to a magical land and given the duty of breaking a curse isn’t something else she wants to add to her to do list Either way she comes to truly care for the people of Emberfall which makes her rather conflicted internally Should she stay in Emberfall and help the people who cannot help themselves Or should she return home to treasure the few precious moments she has left with her mother and help her brother resolve their debt Harper is definitely one of my new favourite protagonists “They believe her limp is the result of a war injury but Harper is uick to correct them ‘I was born this way’ she'll snap ‘and I'm going to die this way so teach me to work around it’ They love her for it”Rhen was a wonderful prince and I definitely swooned at some points I really felt for him because with the exception of Grey he’s been alone for so long repeating the curse over and over again season after season and in that time no one has come to love him He’s lost the family that he loved AND the trust of his people who thought he had deserted them He might even lose his country itself to a neighbouring country trying to invade and if he fails to break the curse this season he’ll permanently be a beast that could kill his people without hesitation Grey stands in the doorway one child on his shoulders half covered by the cloak Another is in his arms sound asleep and drooling against the front of his uniform Snow dusts all three of themMY HEART 3 BUT despite how much I loved Rhen the star of the show for me was Grey the commander of the royal guard I love the tall dark and handsome strong silent and brooding male trope haha So sexy ; He was so brave risking his life by facing down the beast each season and so loyal continuing to stay by Rhen’s side after all this time I have no idea who I prefer Harper to be with romantically but she has sizzling chemistry with the both of them 3 The last time I felt so passionately this way was with the Infernal Devices trio – Will Jem and Tessa – by Cassandra ClareMy only complaint is that the enchantress Lilith was a pretty one dimensional villain We never got to hear her side of the story or even feel some sympathy for her But all in all she was a pretty sadistic and cruel antagonist that made this story even compellingAnd can we talk about that epilogue I need A Heart So Fierce and Broken pronto January 2020 cannot come uickly enough I haven’t read Kemmerer’s recent ventures into contemporary fiction but I did read her X Men esue Elemental series in the early 2010s This was such an improvement from her plots to her characters and even her writing style I’m so proud of how far she’s come This is a must read especially if you love faery tale retellings or even a good love story D The Friend understand what’s at stake And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm his hope comes flooding back But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall and it will take than a broken curse to save Harper Rhen and his people from The Hate U Give utter ru. ‘Twas a buddy read with my bestie Tabi even though she completely left me in the dust hahaRight sothis was an AMAZING La Belle et la Bête retelling And trust me I’ve read half a dozen of them by now Beastly Cruel Beauty A Court of Thorns and Roses Uprooted Hunted Why no I don’t have a problemWhy would you even think that ; I especially enjoyed the fact that like Meagan Spooner’s Hunted we were able to see inside the mind of the beast I think that this book ranks just Chenelyn! Chenelyn! under Rosamund Hodge’s Cruel Beauty as my favourite retelling of this classic tale 3 Just like Hodge’s interpretation Kemmerer’s has one heck of an opening line “There is blood Pillar of Fire under my fingernails I wonder how many of my people I’ve killed this time”Doesn’t that just hook you in Unlike most faery tale retellings Kemmerer’s blurs the lines between Power of Deliverance urban fantasy and high fantasy which admittedly is why I was initially hesitant to pick this book Place of Refuge up But you needn’t worry Less than five of the sixty chapters actually take place in our world The novel is almost exclusively set in the parallel land of Emberfall “‘My father is dead my lady My whole family is dead’ He pulls back meeting my gaze but his voice doesn’t change ‘That monster killed them all’”We all know how this tale goes by now Once Day of Remembrance upon a time a handsome prince lived in a beautiful castle Although he had everything his heart desired the prince was selfish and arrogant One night an God is Bigger than your Biggest Problem unexpected intruder arrived in his chambers seeking to become the future An American Heir ueen The prince shared a bed with her and turned the woman away Scorned the woman revealed herself as a beautiful enchantress As punishment she cursed the castle and all who lived there After each season she would transform him into a hideous beast Compass of God unless he could learn to love another and earn their love in return After which the curse would be broken Unfortunately for the prince this is his last season to do so or he would remain a beast for all time Filled with despair and empty of hope he wondered who could ever learn to love a beast “I’d forgotten this How I could never solve anything before How I was something to be shoved into back rooms or left playing lookout in the alley because I never had anything to offer”Harper was a simply lovely protagonist who was so brave kind and caring While she may not have been born a princess she certainly carried herself like one Captured from the streets of Washington DC at eighteen and suffering from a mild case of cerebral palsy when one falls on the mild side of the spectrum one can walk Triumph and Tragedy: The Second World War (Condensed) Series, Book 4 unaided she has a lot going on at home as well Her father left them with a mountain of debt owed to criminals her brother is expected to find a way to pay back that debt and her mother is dying from cancer Needless to say being abducted to a magical land and given the duty of breaking a curse isn’t something else she wants to add to her to do list Either way she comes to truly care for the people of Emberfall which makes her rather conflicted internally Should she stay in Emberfall and help the people who cannot help themselves Or should she return home to treasure the few precious moments she has left with her mother and help her brother resolve their debt Harper is definitely one of my new favourite protagonists “They believe her limp is the result of a war injury but Harper is Piping-Dilat uick to correct them ‘I was born this way’ she'll snap ‘and I'm going to die this way so teach me to work around it’ They love her for it”Rhen was a wonderful prince and I definitely swooned at some points I really felt for him because with the exception of Grey he’s been alone for so long repeating the curse over and over again season after season and in that time no one has come to love him He’s lost the family that he loved AND the trust of his people who thought he had deserted them He might even lose his country itself to a neighbouring country trying to invade and if he fails to break the curse this season he’ll permanently be a beast that could kill his people without hesitation Grey stands in the doorway one child on his shoulders half covered by the cloak Another is in his arms sound asleep and drooling against the front of his How to Control Stress to Become a More Successful Investor uniform Snow dusts all three of themMY HEART 3 BUT despite how much I loved Rhen the star of the show for me was Grey the commander of the royal guard I love the tall dark and handsome strong silent and brooding male trope haha So sexy ; He was so brave risking his life by facing down the beast each season and so loyal continuing to stay by Rhen’s side after all this time I have no idea who I prefer Harper to be with romantically but she has sizzling chemistry with the both of them 3 The last time I felt so passionately this way was with the Infernal Devices trio – Will Jem and Tessa – by Cassandra ClareMy only complaint is that the enchantress Lilith was a pretty one dimensional villain We never got to hear her side of the story or even feel some sympathy for her But all in all she was a pretty sadistic and cruel antagonist that made this story even compellingAnd can we talk about that epilogue I need A Heart So Fierce and Broken pronto January 2020 cannot come War: The Eighty Greatest Esquire Stories of All Time, Volume 2 uickly enough I haven’t read Kemmerer’s recent ventures into contemporary fiction but I did read her X Men esue Elemental series in the early 2010s This was such an improvement from her plots to her characters and even her writing style I’m so proud of how far she’s come This is a must read especially if you love faery tale retellings or even a good love story D


10 thoughts on “A Curse So Dark and Lonely

  1. says:

    getting ready for my most anticipated seuel and release of 2020 by doing a reread and this is just as amazing as it was the first time 💙uick someone call the vatican and let them know a miracle has happened because this is the first time i am giving a fairytale retelling 5 stars this book is phenomenal like honestly guys you need to stop what you are doing and go get this book the idea of ‘beauty and the beast’ has been retold multiple times but this made me feel like i was experiencing the story for the first time which is such an accomplishment this is fresh and original and everything about it is just so enchanting i was so drawn in that 480 pages seemed to go by in the blink of an eye i just couldnt help but devour every word of this bookthe main character is really relatable she has a great personality and not to mention cerebral palsy ughh that representation tho? so good the love interest is an absolute delight and totally swoon worthy i really enjoyed how even though this is a love story it explores than just romantic love; like love for self love for family love for country and the writing is wonderful the banter is honestly top notch i already knew brigid kemmerer is a ueen of YA contemporary so her venture into fantasy had me eager to see how she would do and she did not disappoint i highly recommend this to basically anyone who knows how to read its just that good lol ↠ 5 stars


  2. says:

    This is hands down one of the best fairy tale retellings I have ever read I did not have high expectations at all having found Brigid Kemmerer’s Letters to the Lost to be a MEH read please don't curse me but this story hooked me right from the startI even had to check twice to see if Brigid Kemmerer really wrote this because I do not remember her writing style being so elegant and feeling like a lover’s caress Oh myWell look Valentine’s Day is coming up I can’t help but be a little extra romantic or corny Actually I highly recommend buying this as a Valentine’s Day gift for your special someone because the love that is depicted in this story is TRUE and must be shared with the entire universeI'd like to be able to say that I only get this dramatic in prose but alas the way I write is the way I speak Just yesterday a friend was telling me about her boyfriend's unboyfriend like behavior and I gave her a passionate speech about love trust and sacrifice I knew little aboutMaybe I should have given her this book insteadBlog | Youtube | Twitter | Instagram | Google | Bloglovin’


  3. says:

    Video review opinion here but I was just so bored I was into it for probably 300 pages because I figured it had to get some dimension to it at some point but it never did I loved the rep with the main character having cerebral palsy she was probably my favourite character out of all of them but she was still a tough one to pin down because things were presented but never really expounded upon not even just with her personality it was an issue I had throughout the book I could appreciate how the Beauty and the Beast fairy tale was twisted in the storyline but everything else for me just fell flat


  4. says:

    Well this wassomethingLike This book is a Beauty and the Beast retelling except take away the dope library and all the nice songs and France okay yes I know the Disney version isn’t the original but I LIKE huge libraries and nice songs and France Anyway take all that stuff and replace it with scenes from gritty modern day DC and blood and monsters and blood and oh my god SO MUCH VIOLENCE AND BLOODAnd also a love triangleFollowing? No not even slightly? That’s fair and also me neitherBasically our protagonist Harper is a girl with a suuuuper tough life living in a high crime area of current day real life Washington DC Her mom has cancer so she helps her brother make money by playing lookout while he beats the sht out of people for a loan shark Also Harper has cerebral palsy and the rep for that plus the relationship between her brother and his boyfriend Noah is far and away the best part of this bookUnfortunately we have so much weird sht to wade through in this synopsis explanation aloneWhile she’s playing lookout for her brother during one such life necessitated crime spree she gets kidnapped by some old timey dude This is Grey the high commander something something of the kingdom Emberfall blah blah Every year or moon passage or sun season or Insert Bullsht High Fantasy Term For Passage Of Time Here Grey travels from the beautiful kingdom of Somewhere Not In Our Realm to our own Washington DC which is in a differentdimension? universe? world? I read this whole book and I’m not uite sure What does Grey do there you might be asking? Go on a jaunty tour of the sights of America’s capital? Perhaps a stroll about the Smithsonian? No my dear boy He captures an innocent woman So that Rhen the king or lord or something can try to get that lady to fall in love with him or something to break a curse by which every season he turns into this giant ever changing beast who kills everyone and destroys everything or something One of them is our protagonist Harper who is promptly not like other girls’d for not beingcompletely delighted with being kidnapped and taking to some drug trip old timey castle?And somehow it’s all downhill from there From what I can remember I read this book seven months ago and even then I didn’t have the greatest understandingLet’s get into some categoriesWHAT A TREAT FOR ME TO GET TRICKED INTO REREADING ACOTAR A BOOK I DID NOT ENJOY AT ALL THANK YOUYou may be tempted to think I am an idiot Even so than usual I mean Yes I am aware that A Court of Thorns and Roses is also a retelling of Beauty and the Beast and therefore these two books are going to have some baseline similaritiesBUT THEY ARE WAY TOO SIMILAR FOR THAT TO BE AN EXCUSERhen justis Rhys Earlier in this review I typed “Rhys” without thinking because they are the same Grey is Tamlin complete with traces of love triangle Lilith the sorceress who puts the curse on Rhen is the parallel to the evil under the mountain lady from ACOTAR whose name I can’t remember down to the sexual assault of RhenRhys as a form of torture and part of the curse I know that the early versions of fairytales are darker than our current Disney versions and all but I can say with confidence that that sht is not part of the original storyObviously it’s the same plotline in broad strokes because it’s a retelling of the same story but the similarities go further Here are examples Both Harper and Feyre regularly participate in illegal activities in order to provide for their families pre glorified kidnapping which lands each of them in the situation that gets them taken to the beast figure’s castle Once there each has to decide whether to return to her family or become ueen ish and save a kingdom Each of them then discovers the power that lies within them realizes they could become a ruler blah blah blah cool cool cool all definitely new stuff Both are supposedly feminist reads that are in reality deeply not like other girls y and only even remotely empowering to the female protagonist And they both even have love triangles that are overwhelmingly similar Between TamlinGrey the sort of original kidnapper and bona fide Nice Guy and the fan favorite bad boy powerful king dude RhenRhys And baby love triangles did Not exist in Disney’s Beauty the BeastBut the love triangle isn’t even the worst part of the romance in this book And like How is that even possibleTHIS “ROMANCE” IS FCKED UP AND GROSSNormally in Beauty the Beast stories there’s a degree of an important lil thing called CONSENT Think back to the Disney cinematic masterpiece Belle is never kept in the castle against her will She agrees to stay in exchange for her father’s life Still fcked up and manipulative for sure but we’re not here to unpack the ways that Disney messed all of us up In fact in every iteration the Beauty character agrees to stay with the Beast characterNot in this oneHarper is legitimately violently kidnapped and taken to Consentless Storybook Land where she never stops trying to go home She tries to escape multiple times She never agrees to stay She is kept AGAINST HER WILL in a STRANGE LAND while her MOM is DYING of CANCER and her brother’s LIFE IS AT RISK So sorry I’m not exactly in the mood for the Stockholm syndrome ass romance being pushed hereLike here’s Rhen outlining the swoon worthy romantic framework we’re dealing with here “‘Grey has grown skilled at finding girls who have no family no one to miss them’ I pause and look at her ‘Often there is no trickery to it they come willingly with little than the promise of a safe place to sleep You I suspect would not have been lured so easily’”Let’s unpack some of the ways that’s legitimately disgusting taking advantage of women with no shelter or security and taking them to ANOTHER WORLD where they will LIKELY DIE and with near certainty NOT RETURN HOME EVEN IF THEY ASK “often” there’s no trickery but it does involve LURING WOMEN IN NEED Harper COULDN’T BE LURED so instead they KIDNAPPED HERAnd there’s stuff on the horizon Because being harder to lure than a rodent unfamiliar with the concept of mousetraps isn’t the only way Harper isn’t like other girlsAMERICA’S FAVORITE TROPE REARS ITS UGLY HEAD WHICH ALSO ISN’T LIKE OTHER GIRLS’ HEADS BY THE WAY IN CASE YOU WERE WONDERINGLet’s just get into it I counted 10 instances of the not like other girls trope I am now going to share a selection of those instances with you1 “Most of the girls Grey drags from her world won’t touch a blade or a bridle and instead gravitate to the finery found within the lushly outfitted wardrobes inside Ironrose Castle” Cue a whole passage about how tough and badass and cool she is compared to every other freshly kidnapped but let’s just move right past that girl in human existence who is a personality less sack of lovesickness from the get go2 “Usually the girls are charmed even delighted but Harper looks like she wants to turn and walk right back out of here” The language used around the multitudinous kidnappings that are nonstop referenced in this book never stops being weird 3 “For a different girl the best part of this bedroom would be the closet” Women be shopping am I right? We love to resort to baseline gender stereotypes in order to characterize a protagonist by contrasting her to women at large rather than by use of any legitimate writing tactics4 “‘She is interesting’ My eyes flick up That’s not a word I’ve ever heard Grey use to describe one of the girls” A lot of the time I’m kind of immune to the not like other girls bullsht but sometimes one instance of it is so fcked up that I am suddenly woken from the coma of my existential fatigue This is one of those moments No other girl is interesting If women across the board are just not Interesting to you you’re fcking sexist and gross That’s it Bare minimum the characters in this book and the situation at the core of it are sexist and gross5 “She accepts the lie readily but I do not like it Earning this moment feels a thousand times satisfying than plying women with pretty falsehoods and empty promises” It must be lovely to be the one woman this fcker decides he’s okay with treating as a person6 “I have had over three hundred women to practice on I should have known better” Women are again and I cannot stress this enough NOT people but they are practice7 “Did you get naked with these hundreds of women too?” Fun stuff8 “I forgot that she is not some simple girl who sparks intrigue with every other word from her tongue” Some Simple Girl Also that sentence is from a literal paragraph after the one I uoted before it NiceMaybe even overwhelming than all of these instances is the fact that just about everything Harper does and is and says has to be contrasted with Girls At Large Her familiarity with horses? Not like other girls Playing cards with Grey? Not like other girls Smacking Rhen across his stupid dumb consentless face? LIKE NO OTHER WOMAN IN RECORDED HISTORYBy changing this story so it isn’t just One Girl Beauty who shows up at the Beast’s abode and rather it’s HUNDREDS OF GIRLS the author seems to have also thought that we needed reminders at every turn that Harper isn’t like any of them It’s fcking exhaustingLET’S TALK ABOUT GENDER ROLES BABY LET’S TALK ABOUT REGRESSIVE FORMS OF EXAMINING FEMININITYLiberal inclusion of the not like other girls trope is unfortunately not the only gross sexist thing found in this book And I’m not just talking about how consentless the whole thing isBecause holy gender roles Batman is this thinggender role yExamples “He selected ten guardsmen from those who applied To my surprise Zo was one Grey chose and the only female” ONE OUT OF TEN Finally a feminist read am I right? “The ladies of the castle have gone to work to make things festive” So glad The Women are finally getting to the important non stereotypically feminine work Oh waitThis line also just doesn’t sit well with me “The tight fabric veiling the lower halves of their faces turns them all androgynous which is somehow intimidating” Call me crazy but I kinda fail to see what’s so intimidating aboutandrogyny Am not creeped out by genderlessness personallyBut don’t worry It’s not only female characters by means of being flat and uncharacterized beyond feminine roles who are a nonstop barrel of Terrible Because our main dude is also thatRHEN SUCKSRhen is essentially portrayed as this tortured tragic figure forced to do bad deeds for the greater good Considering the sheer number of terrible things he’s done kidnapping women on the reg having a monster alter ego who is a nonstop Killing The Innocents machine destroying his kingdom and also not ever doing his job even once even by accident we as readers have to buy this story In order to even tolerate this sparkly eyed rogue we have to believe that he is only bad because he Has To BeBut uhthat characterization doesn’t add up? Like even a little Take this gem of a thought for example “I once thought the monstrous destruction was the worst part of the curse but I’ve long since learned that it’s not It’s this the repeated humiliation and punishment”If Rhen was tortured by what he was doing maybe it’d be easier to like him But he feels very little guilt or regret Instead he is very much like “IT’S NOT MY FAULT” all the time forever And I get that’s what I’m supposed to believeBut I’m just saying it doesn’t exactly scream Good Guy to react to your responsibility for the death of your loved ones by pitying yourselfHM THAT DOESN’T SEEM LIKE IT MAKES SENSE BUT IT DOES SEEM LIKE IT WILL BOTHER ME FOR A NONSENSICAL AMOUNT OF TIMEIn addition to the various aforementioned not my favorite writing tactics this book is oftensloppy And I read an ARC so maybe some of this changed but I got taken out a few times by little things that bugged meLike the fact that Harper’s family is so poor that loan sharks are showing up at the door and her brother Jake didn’t have a dollar to give thembut somewhere in there he bought a new phone Or that there’s a zero word chapter Or that one paragraph switches to a POV that is completely different from the entire rest of the book Or that none of the guard characters ever sleepLittle things But again these may have changedNOW THAT’S WHAT I CALL AMAZINGLY OVERWROUGHT HIGH FANTASY NAMESOn oh maybe page fourteen of this book I realized something That Something was that the names in this fantasy castle fairytale old times world are a fcking delight Everything has the most ridiculous overdone perfect name in the history of the universeI wrote down every single one I did not even exclude the ones that seem less funny than the others Here they are for your reading pleasureAll the names of places which sound like names of fairy villages I would’ve brainstormed at 11 after constructing a stack of pebbles in my backyard for teensy mythical creatures to move into Emberfall Ironrose Wildthorne Valley Hutchins Forge Blackrock Plains Silvermoon Harbor Verin Syhl Shallow WillmintonAll the names of characters in the fantasy part relish all these normal names with one letter changedRhen Grey Evalyn Coale Bastian Freya Lilith Dahlia Davin Marko Karis Olivia Edgar Dara Petor Zo Mave Micah Leylan Dustan LandonACTUAL BOOK BASED READING EXPERIENCE COMPLAINTSWe’ve reached the “normal” section of this review where I stop yelling about specific things or offensive things and instead yell about actual book things Like the characters and how I felt nothing for them even once even at all over the whole course of this book Or the fact that the twist was very predictableI don’t even really remember the twist anyNEVERTHELESS SOME GOOD STUFF PERSISTEDStill there were some good things In fact there were precisely three of them1 This was fun and uick which is a real shock considering it’s long boi I read it in like a day or something And then proceeded to not review it for seven months2 The cerebral palsy rep in this is by far the best part of the whole thing It is the single most uniue interesting and carefully and thoughtfully done aspect If I read the next book is there a next book? it will be because of it3 Surprisingly this gets marginally better as it goes along I went from laughing regularly prompting my roommate to ask me “Is that a this book is funny laugh or this book sucks laugh?” it was the latter to not usually laughing and instead occasionally scoffing ProgressBottom line Apparently this book worked for a lot of people Maybe it will work for you For me it was a nonstop rollercoaster ride of Mess if you liked A Court of Thorns and Roses you will really like this bookI did not like A Court of Thorns and Rosesreview 2 come 15 stars IT'S A BEAUTY AND THE BEAST RETELLING WITH CEREBRAL PALSY REPi don't care if it's 500 pages long and my midterms are fast approaching i'm reading it RIGHT NOWthanks to Bloomsbury for the ARC


  5. says:

    Read again with For Love Of A BookFairyloot Book Of The Month Click on link below the picture to see the GOODIES THE GOODIESOmg THIS WAS THE BEST RETELLING EVER AND IS IN MY FAVORITES LIST I need the next book NOW Harper comes from modern day DC She has cerebral palsy and she’s bad ass Harper gets sucked into another world when she attacks Commander Grey when she sees him carrying a woman away She thinks he is going to kill the lady Suddenly Harper gets transported into another world through Grey It take Harper some time to trust Grey and Prince Rhen They have a time with her too Harper wants to get back to her mom who is dying of cancer and her brother who is doing unsavory things to keep them afloat But Rhen won’t let her go at first When the trust slowly is accepted Harper helps try to save the people and Rhen and Grey I’m not going to say any or I will spoil I just want to leave it with kudos to the author for having a heroine like Harper That ending though Happy Reading Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾 MY BLOG


  6. says:

    I'm on the verge of breaking up with YA fantasy Well with the new releases anyway and just sticking to authors that have worked for me And possibly reading YA fantasy that were released in the past because the constant disappointments and anger I feel towards the new ones are slowly decimating my soulThis was a flop for me Here I was expecting to really enjoy this retelling and it just got worse as I read on I could not tell you what happened in the last 100 pages or so I skim read it and I don't even care that I did I tolerated it for 400 pages and that's enough to tell you I was patient enough The annoying thing for me here is that I adore absolutely LOVE Letters to the Lost and More Than We Can Tell by Brigid Kemmerer Those stories were so emotionally hard hitting for me and well written and the characterisation strong But this felt like child's play I cringed on numerous occasions because of how flimsy it felt There was so much lacking when it came to its world building as well as the character development The plot was interesting at first and it took me away to Emberfall and then it became a snooze fest I wasn't convinced by any of it There was no substance strength and no meat to the story I think because it was uite fast faced it missed out on properly developing on those other elementsGoddamn I'm feeling bitter I'm feeling too bitter to think and give examples I really wanted to like this And now I want to cry I'll review it properly whenever Or never Sigh Book 2 for the #TomeTopple readathon Buddy reading with the wonderful Karima 💚 I adore Brigid Kemmerer's other books They've been 5 star reads for me I'm hoping this will be too


  7. says:

    ‘Twas a buddy read with my bestie Tabi even though she completely left me in the dust hahaRight sothis was an AMAZING La Belle et la Bête retelling And trust me I’ve read half a dozen of them by now Beastly Cruel Beauty A Court of Thorns and Roses Uprooted Hunted Why no I don’t have a problemWhy would you even think that? ; I especially enjoyed the fact that like Meagan Spooner’s Hunted we were able to see inside the mind of the beast I think that this book ranks just under Rosamund Hodge’s Cruel Beauty as my favourite retelling of this classic tale 3 Just like Hodge’s interpretation Kemmerer’s has one heck of an opening line “There is blood under my fingernails I wonder how many of my people I’ve killed this time”Doesn’t that just hook you in? Unlike most faery tale retellings Kemmerer’s blurs the lines between urban fantasy and high fantasy which admittedly is why I was initially hesitant to pick this book up But you needn’t worry Less than five of the sixty chapters actually take place in our world The novel is almost exclusively set in the parallel land of Emberfall “‘My father is dead my lady My whole family is dead’ He pulls back meeting my gaze but his voice doesn’t change ‘That monster killed them all’”We all know how this tale goes by now Once upon a time a handsome prince lived in a beautiful castle Although he had everything his heart desired the prince was selfish and arrogant One night an unexpected intruder arrived in his chambers seeking to become the future ueen The prince shared a bed with her and turned the woman away Scorned the woman revealed herself as a beautiful enchantress As punishment she cursed the castle and all who lived there After each season she would transform him into a hideous beast unless he could learn to love another and earn their love in return After which the curse would be broken Unfortunately for the prince this is his last season to do so or he would remain a beast for all time Filled with despair and empty of hope he wondered who could ever learn to love a beast? “I’d forgotten this How I could never solve anything before How I was something to be shoved into back rooms or left playing lookout in the alley because I never had anything to offer”Harper was a simply lovely protagonist who was so brave kind and caring While she may not have been born a princess she certainly carried herself like one Captured from the streets of Washington DC at eighteen and suffering from a mild case of cerebral palsy when one falls on the mild side of the spectrum one can walk unaided she has a lot going on at home as well Her father left them with a mountain of debt owed to criminals her brother is expected to find a way to pay back that debt and her mother is dying from cancer Needless to say being abducted to a magical land and given the duty of breaking a curse isn’t something else she wants to add to her to do list Either way she comes to truly care for the people of Emberfall which makes her rather conflicted internally Should she stay in Emberfall and help the people who cannot help themselves? Or should she return home to treasure the few precious moments she has left with her mother and help her brother resolve their debt? Harper is definitely one of my new favourite protagonists “They believe her limp is the result of a war injury but Harper is uick to correct them ‘I was born this way’ she'll snap ‘and I'm going to die this way so teach me to work around it’ They love her for it”Rhen was a wonderful prince and I definitely swooned at some points I really felt for him because with the exception of Grey he’s been alone for so long repeating the curse over and over again season after season and in that time no one has come to love him He’s lost the family that he loved AND the trust of his people who thought he had deserted them He might even lose his country itself to a neighbouring country trying to invade and if he fails to break the curse this season he’ll permanently be a beast that could kill his people without hesitation Grey stands in the doorway one child on his shoulders half covered by the cloak Another is in his arms sound asleep and drooling against the front of his uniform Snow dusts all three of themMY HEART 3 BUT despite how much I loved Rhen the star of the show for me was Grey the commander of the royal guard I love the tall dark and handsome strong silent and brooding male trope haha So sexy ; He was so brave risking his life by facing down the beast each season and so loyal continuing to stay by Rhen’s side after all this time I have no idea who I prefer Harper to be with romantically but she has sizzling chemistry with the both of them 3 The last time I felt so passionately this way was with the Infernal Devices trio – Will Jem and Tessa – by Cassandra ClareMy only complaint is that the enchantress Lilith was a pretty one dimensional villain We never got to hear her side of the story or even feel some sympathy for her But all in all she was a pretty sadistic and cruel antagonist that made this story even compellingAnd can we talk about that epilogue? I need A Heart So Fierce and Broken pronto January 2020 cannot come uickly enough I haven’t read Kemmerer’s recent ventures into contemporary fiction but I did read her X Men esue Elemental series in the early 2010s This was such an improvement from her plots to her characters and even her writing style I’m so proud of how far she’s come This is a must read especially if you love faery tale retellings or even a good love story D


  8. says:

    #1 A Curse So Dark and Lonely ★★★★★#2 A Heart So Fierce and Broken DNF If you've read the book and enjoy listening to great songs that are super emotional and reminiscent of characters might I encourage you to listen to 'I'll Be Good' by Jaymes Young and cry over Rhen with me? Harper’s life isn’t easy—her father has left her family with all his debts her brother is working for the same loan sharks they owe and her mother is in the final stages of cancer Meanwhile in the land of Emberfall Crown Prince Rhen is facing the final season of his curse if he doesn’t find love within three months he’ll be left forever in the form of the bloodthirsty beast that overtakes him with each failed courtship When the prince’s guard kidnaps Harper for one last shot at breaking the spell will she choose a dying kingdom or her family? I love Beauty and the Beast retellings but we’ve had so many of them that they need a fresh take to catch my eye nowadays and A Curse So Dark and Lonely absolutely had that to offer Between the mixture of urban and high fantasy worlds and the protagonist’s cerebral palsy representation I’ve been hyped as heck for this release since the synopsis was first announced In fact I think I hyped myself up too much for it because when my copy arrivedit was hard to pick it up right away just thanks to being nervous over how devastated I knew I’d be if it wasn’t amazing → L I K E S “You are responsible You Rhen You alone will destroy them all” Thankfully every last one of my concerns were TOTALLY unnecessary because I thought this was flawless I adored the atmospheric setting the flawed characters the representation and how dark the curse was Brigid Kemmerer took this classic tale of a prince cursed to live life as a beast and tossed it into such a heavy violent spin that I was hooked from the first page Everything is always the same Except for the dead They never come back Of course there are the characters too who are so lovable despite being ridiculously flawed or because of that maybe because they all feel so complex and multidimensional Harper is a phenomenal heroine and I LOVED her CP rep—there are just so many good conversations taking place in this book regarding how the world treats people with disabilities There is blood under my fingernails I wonder how many of my people I’ve killed this time And then of course there’s Rhen who is so angsty and tragic but in the best way and my favorite Grey the guard Grey was honestly the star of this show for me between his uick wit cool demeanor and neverending loyalty and bravery Can I please get a book about him Brigid? Pleeeaaaaase? → F I N A L THOUGHTS Seriously though I just don’t have anything negative to say about this gorgeous fantasy novel Between the writing characters story rep—it’s the whole package and easily my favorite work that I’ve read from Brigid Kemmerer so far I love her contemporary writing too but this made me genuinely hope she keeps putting out fantasy releases because she’s a total natural → RECOMMENDING TO I’d recommend this to any fans of fantasy stories especially if you enjoy retellings andor highlow fantasy crossovers All uotes come from an advance copy and may not match the final release Thank you so much to Bloomsbury YA for providing me with this ARC in exchange for an honest review


  9. says:

    lol acotar wishes it could be this book i genuinely didn’t hate this but i also didn’t reallylike it? except the cerebral palsy rep that harper provided that was excellentidk what does ACSDAL bring to the table? it’s a generic beauty and the beast story with a boring love interest an unnecessary love triangle and a very loose world there just wasn’t much to keep me interested and i struggled to get investedwith this book and cinder being such disappointments for me recently maybe it’s time that i take a break from retellings for a bit


  10. says:

    I am always surprised to discover that when the world seems darkest there exists the greatest opportunity for light In case you didn't know already one of my book talents are joining in the hype of the books months or years after the hype A Curse So Dark and Lonely was really one of my most anticipated releases of 2019 I wasn't a fan of Kemmerer's popular Letters To the Lost book but I still wanted to give this one a shot Considering I'm not even a fan of YA fantasy and it's something I no longer want to read I was surprised at the fact that when I started reading this I didn't want to get back up and stop reading I wanted to stay seated on my chair and finish the book Brigid Kemmerer really surprised me with this oneFollowing a similar story to Beauty and the Beast Brigid decided to keep the original story attached but also decided to add in her own darker and creative ways to make the story even better In A Curse So Dark and Lonely we follow two perspectives shifting in order Rhen is the Prince of Emberfall but he was also cursed by an enchantress After throwing her away she cursed him to repeat his 18th year over and over every season until a girl falls in love with him to break the curse At first it seemed easy for him but that was before he knew he would shift into a beast every autumn Following this form are only plans of destroying as all the beast thinks about is death and violence The beast controls Rhen and it is the one who destroyed the castle killed his family and ripped him from his people Now he sees his people starve and live in poverty As they age he repeats his year over and over and until the curse is broken Rhen has no hope leftHarper living in DC is dealing with her situations After having to deal with her father leaving them her mother is dying and is in the last stages of cancer while she and her brother have to do anything in their will to be able to pay the debts their father left Not only that but her brother underestimates what Harper can do and can't do due to her cerebral palsy When Harper sees a young and blonde woman trying to be taken by a strange man she believes the right thing to do is step in and save her but she begins to think about her mother her brother herself and how this could lead to trouble Still seeing how the young woman is struggling she can't keep looking and not do anything When she tries saving her she's suddenly no longer in the streets of Washington DC but she's in the cursed world of Rhen Unable to believe that she has to stay in this unsafe unknown and magical place Harper begins to strategize and come up with ideas to get back home but she didn't know that there wasn't any way to go backAs Harper is stuck with Rhen and in his world his castle and with everything else around him she notices that Rhen isn't just as arrogant as she thought She notices that Emberfall is than just magical She knows she has a family to go back to but as she starts getting adjusted to the world of Emberfall she knows there is at stake Meanwhile Rhen also notices that Harper isn't just a girl that he needs to try and have her fall in love with He notices that she is strong He notices that he is trying to help him make a change in his world and for his people He notices that she is bringing him back the hope he thought he would never have again As the two begin to spend time together and get to know each other the two realize there is than just a curse to be broken There is blood under my fingernails I wonder how many of my people I’ve killed this time Brigid Kemmerer is uite underrated Although her Letters to the Lost duology is uite popular I wouldn't call it one of the most popular contemporary books out there I myself was not a fan of Letters to the Lost I had given up on her but then she announced a seuel that was about Declan and I was all up for it The fact that I still have not read it makes me feel like a fake fan but I believe this can make up for it A Curse So Dark and Lonely had me hooked since the start I can't remember the process of the feeling I got when I started reading this without realizing I kept reading while losing track of time It's as if this book was made for me to get me out of my two month reading slump Admittedly it didn't spark my interest for YA fantasy again it did bring a little hope back The fewest things I remember as I was reading was laughing at Grey's sense of humor crying towards the end and wishing I could slam this book into my friend's faces because they don't read and I wish they did The world in this was so imaginable I am so glad to say that it does not get to the point where it's over described overwhelming boring and even unimaginable It felt like I was in Emberfall at times looking up at the stars and then gazing at the snow Being able to imagine the world brought so much interest in the book The author manages to make it feel like we were going with Harper along with her journey when she first arrived seeing everything for the first time and becoming adjusted to it Along with the world building the author also never failed to leave me bored I kept wanting to read to find out and find out what would happen Kemmerer has created unforgettable characters Harper is one of the best female protagonists I have read about When she met Rhen she immediately showed him her identity and who she is Not only was she caring but she was strong She also has cerebral palsy but she did not let it get in her way Although it was not mentioned too often it was not ignored When asked why she would limp or be slow at times she would answer directly and honestly and it was so nice to see the main character not allow herself to be thrown down because of a disorder Not only that but she was also so caring When she noticed how Emberfall was she wanted to take action and help Rhen but also help the people living there It was as if Emberfall was the home she never knew aboutAs the story moved on Harper took the role of a princess She wasn't born one but it felt as if the whole time she was made to rule Emberfall along with Rhen She may have not been made to be a princess before but she knew what being a leader meant She knew what she was doing and she knew she was doing it for good purposes Her warm heart and her care for the people showed that she was willing to do anything she could to help anyone We are all dealt a hand at birth A good hand can ultimately lose—just as a poor hand can win—but we must all play the cards the fate deals The choices we face may not be the choices we want but they are choices nonetheless Harper did learn from Rhen himself as well Since he was used to royalty since a young age Harper had to understand his point of view Seeing that she was able to understand and sympathize with him warmed my heart They were enemies and seeing how their relationship progressed into something beautiful as I read on kept warming my heart Harper learns that there can be good in the hearts of the ones who look like there is no light in themRhen can be considered arrogant and with zero personality at first but to me he was not that Rhen was broken and he couldn't fix himself He thought he had it all at first and thought everything was easy but as time passed he noticed that none of it was ever easy He noticed that his people were dying but he had no motivation and determination to do anything Rhen looked back at his poor decisions and saw that he needed to do something His issue was that he felt like he couldn't do anything He was a broken prince who didn’t know where he belonged at the moment what his true colors were and who he really wasThis is an enemy to lovers story but it's not just about the romance It's also about trust and deciding on who to rely on who to let your secrets out to who to consider a big part of your life Rhen and Harper found in each other in both of their worst moments and although there were times when I wanted to yell at Harper because she was being the selfish one at times instead I could understand her situation She wanted to go home and see how her mother was doing She knew she was going to die and her only hope was to say goodbye during the final stage She noticed how happy her brother was with his boyfriend Noah and noticed that he was also in trouble I couldn't blame her attitude because of the situation she was going through but I couldn't accept it every time because I needed her to understand Rhen's situation as well I do not understand how she can fill me with such hope and fear simultaneously I believe the only complaint of this is not only how the ending is torture and I have to wait until January of next year to find out if my predictions are true or false but the torture Brigid decided to give Rhen because of Lilith broke my heart It would make sense as to why she would do it as I hear Brigid makes torture as part of the plot in her books There isn't much I can say about her besides the fact that she showed nothing but darkness to Rhen We don't get to hear her side of the story and I hope we do in the next book With that epilogue there might be to her story or maybe it was the end Even though I really despised Lilith her never mentioned story sounds interesting and being able to know about who she is what she really does why she did what she did and how she did it would bring suspense to the bookTo end this I'd like to finally talk about my actual favorite character of this Grey His sarcastic tones his sense of humor his overall dialogue—it was all hilarious The way he was able to get along with the children making them laugh at one point and then standing on guard when Rhen caught him was the cutest Not only that but the friendship he formed with Harper was something he needed Because he was also cursed with Rhen his age would repeat over and over again as well He was always a guardsman and considering that Rhen used to make him suffer at times the break he would get when he was with Harper was appreciated by me wholeheartedly He was making me laugh since he brought Harper to the castle and being able to see that he was another addition of hope light and happiness for Rhen was beautiful I do hope he remains as Rhen's guardsman not because of what he would do for him but because of how long they have known each other for and because of what they know from each other Grey was brave loyal and would never leave the side of Rhen unless asked to Seeing as how he would lay his life for Rhen brought multiple tears to stream down my cheeks “She attacked you?” My eyebrows rise “Grey She is half your size”“She makes up for it in temperament She most assuredly was not my first choice” A Curse So Dark and Lonely has become a favorite of mine Seeing as how the ending was I don't think I'll be needing to re read this when the seuel comes out but I might reconsider it when the date becomes closer


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