Book Review

Book Review: Heart’s Blood by Julie Marillier

Rating: ☆☆☆
Audience: Fantasy Romance / Retelling
Length: 402 pages
Author: Julie Marillier
Publisher: Roc
Release Date: November 3rd, 2009
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Whistling Tor is a place of secrets, a mysterious wooded hill housing the crumbling fortress of a chieftain whose name is spoken throughout the region in tones of revulsion and bitterness. A curse lies of Anluan’s family and his people. The woods hold a perilous force whose every whisper threatens doom. And Anluan himself has been crippled by a childhood illness.

Then the young scribe Caitrin appears in Anluan’s garden, admiring the rare plant known as heart’s blood. Retained to sort through entangled family documents, Caitrin brings about the unexpected changes in the household, casting a hopeful light against the despairing shadows.

But even as Caitrin brings solace to Anluan, and the promise of something more between them, he remains in thrall to the darkness surrounding Whistling Tor. To free Anluan’s burdened soul, Caitrin must unravel the web of sorcery woven by his ancestors before it claims his life and their love.

BACKLIST B&tB.

This is a Beauty and the Beast retelling.

It was okay.

Honestly, got kind of bored about halfway through.

It was an interesting story [mostly]. It’s background was an Irish setting with all the things you’ve seen in B&tB. A small town with a mysterious ruler, magic, a woman who comes in to save the day (running from her own Gaston). For a retelling I thought it did line up on point for the original story. There were some additional tidbits to make it older, but that was mostly it.

I didn’t feel the chemistry between Caitrin and Anluan. It wasn’t bad, but I don’t know. Wasn’t working for me. I was also really confused by the magic. There were these magic mirrors that kept showing flashbacks? And then I would forget I was in a flashback, and things got convoluted at that point.

It’s a slow ride. I found myself forcing myself to finish, but was too far in to stop. The story wasn’t bad and I know others will probably really enjoy it. It was a not for me book.

Overall audience notes:

  • Fantasy romance, retelling
  • Language: little
  • Romance: kisses to some mild love scenes (mostly closed door)
  • Violence: war, skirmishes, physical
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: sexual assault, domestic abuse, ableism, loss of loved ones, suicide, suicide ideation, murder

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