Book Review

Book Review: Heart of the Fae (The Otherworld #1) by Emma Hamm

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: Fantasy romance + Retelling
Length: 350 pages
Author: Emma Hamm
Publisher: Self-published
Release Date: November 26th, 2017
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Beauty and the Beast meets Irish Mythology in this sweeping retelling of the beloved fairytale….

Once upon a time…

A plague sweeps across the emerald hills of Uí Néill, leaving a young midwife’s father with months to live. To save her people, Sorcha makes a deal with a dangerous Fae. She must travel across the sea, through merrow and kelpie lands, to find a forgotten king on a crumbling throne.

Born king of the Seelie Fae, Eamonn fought battles unnumbered to uphold honor, duty, and freedom… until his twin brother sank a blade between his shoulders. Crystals grew from the wound, splitting open skin and bone. His people banished him to a cursed isle for his disfigurement, now king of criminals and fools.

With the help of brownies, pixies, and will-o’-the-wisps, Sorcha battles to break through his crystalline shell and persuade him to take back his stolen throne.

This determined beauty could come dangerously close to stealing his beastly heart. 

A GREAT RETELLING.

I definitely think this is one of the better retellings of Beauty and the Beast that I’ve read.

This really followed the flow of B&TB. I could definitely tell what scenes were being recreated and the plot line it was going for. I enjoyed this take on it because of that fact. I liked seeing how someone else interpreted the story (and adding fae is ALWAYS good). This was full of faeries and the romance was kicked up to a much steamier vibe.

The romance felt a *tiny* bit insta-love at first. It came off as mostly lust and I was worried how that was going to affect the story. Never fear, the way that Sorcha and Eamonn built their relationship after some initial contact was fantastic. I loved the enemies to lovers type banter, the slow tender moments they had, that all led to a partnership that I ship.

Sorcha as a character was amazing. Her role as a healer gave focus to her decisions and mindset. I liked how firm she was on HER choices and that she never gave up on her original intentions for seeking out the fae. There was no wishy-washy character here. Sorcha was a lovely and strong heroine.

Eamonn was the beast. And that sentence is wholly accurate. His role was exactly how I expected it and I LOVED seeing the small things he started doing for Sorcha purely to make her happy. Ohhhhh so cute y’all.

The story itself was well put together and I thought the plot had everything it needed. There was a point and reasoning behind choices and I never had to ask why. I love the way the fae were woven into everything and I love all things faerie in general.

I’m definitely interested in continuing this duology (and the other books in this universe). This was a self-published book and I LOVE finding these kind of gems.

Overall audience notes:

  • Fantasy romance + retelling
  • Language: very little
  • Romance: some kisses, make outs, one moderately detailed love scene
  • Violence: physical, magic, skirmishes with swords, a creepy blood beetle epidemic

Instagram || Goodreads

Top 10 Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Characters I’d Like To Switch Places With

Y’all, I am on the struggle bus for today’s Top Ten Tuesday!

I had a hard time deciding on anyone I’d switch places with and consulted my entire read shelf on Goodreads to help me decide.

I finally came up with a list though!! And have made it another week. Let’s go.

As usual, in no particular order:

America || The Selection Series

Someone messed up and I feel like I missed my calling as a Princess. I clearly was in the wrong place at the wrong time to ever meet a Prince (but don’t tell my husband).

Elizabeth Bennett || Pride and Prejudice

“You have bewitched me body and soul and I love, I love, I love you.” I have a lot of book boyfriends and they are definitely motivating my choices in this line-up.

Asha || The Last Namsara

I really want a pet dragon. Asha has a pet dragon. I would like to switch places with Asha.

Feyre || A Court of Mist and Fury

Another book boyfriend, my High Lord, Rhys. Yeaaaaaah. I’d switch places with Feyre easy, he’s mine.

Lara Jean || To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before

Peter K. is a precious cinnamon roll who is too much of a sweet-heart for his own good. I also would love to spend a lot more time baking than I do. I can smell the cookies now…

Lira|| To Kill a Kingdom

Yes, I know she’s a siren but I am highly obsessed with mermaids and all things beach related. I was a mermaid in another life, I am sure of it.

Max || Where the Wild Things Are

Ohh, to have the imagination of a young child. I would love to feel that way again and to be Queen of the Wild Things.

Belle || Beauty and the Beast

I WANT THE LIBRARY. THAT IS ALL.

Also, now that I looked up more about the original story (the cover above) I am interested in reading where the phenomena came from.

Nova || Renegades

I’m not quite sure I would specifically want Nova’s never sleeping power, BUT I think it would me major fun to have some sort of super power. There’s so many to choose from in this series!

Anna || Anna and the French Kiss

I can’t be the only one who has had a fantasy about going off to a foreign country and meeting someone. And how absolutely precious is Etienne St. Clair?

All finished! Would you consider switching places with any of the above? Let’s talk in the comments!

Instagram || Goodreads

Book Tag

Book Tag: Beauty and the Beast

Book Tag Saturday! I saw this over on Justine’s blog (Bookish Wisps) and since Beauty and the Beast is one of my top Disney movies ever, I couldn’t resist!

Rules:

  • Thank the person who tagged you.
  • Mention the creator → Kirsty @ Kirsty and the Cat Read.
  • Match a book to each of the songs/characters below.
  • Tag as many people as you like.

“Tale As Old As Time” – A popular theme, trope or setting you’ll never get bored of reading

Enemies to Lovers. I will never not love the hate and angst that turns into crazy passion between characters. I LIVE FOR IT.

Belle – A book you brought for its beautiful cover that’s just as beautiful inside too. 

I LOVE watermelons and thought this cover was gorgeous and clever. And the book itself was the same way. It’s about a young girl struggling to understand her Mom with schizophrenia. The portrayal of mental health is poignant.

Find my review here!

Beast – Book you didn’t expect much from but pleasantly surprised you.

I just finished this book a few days ago and it definitely was a pleasant surprise. I was afraid it might be on the shallow side, but the darker portions really brought out the deeper meanings of the story.

Gaston – A book that everyone loves that you don’t

While this isn’t my biggest unpopular opinion, it is one that I know may seem crazy. I didn’t hate this series, but I never felt totally connected to the plot and characters. I think the slower pace kept me from falling in love with them.

Lefou – A loyal sidekick you can’t help but love more than their counterpart

SEVRO! I love Sevro so much. He is one of my favorite sidekicks ever. I do love Darrow, don’t get me wrong, but I love everything Sevro says and does.

Mrs. Pott, Chip & Cogsworth  – A book that helped you through a difficult time or that taught you something valuable

I think the reason I love this book so much (and the series) is that it helps me through difficult times every time I pick it up. It’s the first book I go to in a reading slump, when I am feeling really down and a hundred other reasons. Feyre’s emotions remind me often of my own dark places and how she finds her happy ending reminds me that I have one too.

“Something There” –  A book or a series that you weren’t into at first but picked up towards the end

I read the first book in the series and liked it, but didn’t think about looking for the second book.

Fast forward a year or two and I saw the second book at the library, thought, “why not?,” and LOVED it. Then I was able to snag book three, The Winter of the Witch, from Netgalley and fell even harder.

This is now one of my all time favorite series. If you’re looking for a fantasy book, seriously, pick these up. They won’t let you down.

“Be Our Guest” –  A fictional character you’d love to have over for dinner

Rhys, The Most Handsome High Lord. This needs no explanation. I know I’m not the only one that would want this.

Not tagging anyone, but feel free to do this!

Instagram || Goodreads

Publishing Day

Happy Publishing Day: A Curse So Dark and Lonely (ACSDAL #1) by Brigid Kemmerer

Happy publishing day to an inventive and dark Beauty and the Beast retelling! I was immersed in the story and am excited for the second book. Plenty of monsters, romance, strong heroines, and overcoming barriers that will keep you on your toes.

Thank you again to Bloosmbury and Netgalley for the e-ARC.

Book Summary:

In a lush, contemporary fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast, Brigid Kemmerer gives readers another compulsively readable romance perfect for fans of Marissa Meyer.

Fall in love, break the curse. 

It 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 shred of hope.

Nothing 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 world.

Break the curse, save the kingdom. 

A 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 more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin.

Find my original review here and make sure to add this to your TBR!