Title: The Cruel Prince
Author: Holly Black
Release Date: January 2, 2018
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (Hachette Book Group imprint)
Jude was seven years old when her parents were murdered and she and her two sisters were stolen away to live in the treacherous High Court of Faerie. Ten years later, Jude wants nothing more than to belong there, despite her mortality. But many of the fey despise humans. Especially Prince Cardan, the youngest and wickedest son of the High King. To win a place at the Court, she must defy him–and face the consequences. In doing so, she becomes embroiled in palace intrigues and deceptions, discovering her own capacity for bloodshed. But as civil war threatens to drown the Courts of Faerie in violence, Jude will need to risk her life in a dangerous alliance to save her sisters, and Faerie itself.
The Cruel Prince is dark and cruel, set in a dangerous world of secrets and plots, but one human girl is willing to risk everything in order to carve out a place of her own. Because even though she hates them, she wants so desperately to fit in.
Jude, once a stolen child, is now a young woman of certain strengths and angers. Anger at the teasing and humiliation she is subjected to day after day. Being a human in Faerie, she's vulnerable to their magic, the suggestive and possibly deadly effects of their food and drink. Their unearthly beauty and their manipulative charm. Growing up there made her hard, made her suspicious of their teasing and tricks and fickle natures. But even after ten years of teasing, of resenting their strengths and her human weaknesses, of their disgust of her, Jude still wants a place there. She still wants to belong there.
I do think this book says a lot about strengths and weaknesses, fragility, cunning and manipulation. About the desire for not only power but respect, and the lengths some go to in order to be king of the mountain. The skeletons hidden in the back of the closet. Looking at what Jude goes through, the discrimination and the assaults, the different ways she has to protect herself from faerie magic, the number of times she lies and gets away with it, her rise to status and power must be far different from theirs. Knowing how this book ends, I'm definitely curious as to where the next one will go, what will happen next to Jude.
(I received an e-galley of this title from Hachette Book Group Canada.)