February was all about the Fae!! I participated in the Faebruary readathon this month. So in total, I read 7 books featuring all types of faeries and I’ve summarised the books and the type of faeries it features on this blog. I hope you enjoy it.
Firstly thanks to Sarah-Jane over at The Book Life for starting this awesomeness! It is my first readathon of the year, but it won’t be my last as I really do enjoy them. But it’s now officially the end of Faebruary, which is a bit sad so let’s recap 😁
The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
I did a quick plot guessing blog about this book before I read it which can be found here. It’s quite interesting how close it came to some of the stuff, yet so far away.
The story: Jude’s parents are murdered in front of her as a child, and the murderer takes her and her sisters back to Faerie to be raised amongst the Fay. Jude ends up going to love her new “father” (ehm Stockholm syndrome much?) who teaches her to wield a blade and war strategy. She’s ambitious and as a mortal, there are only two ways to survive the fey court: marry or become knighted. Jude wants the latter. Problem is, the Cruel Prince, named Cadner, doesn’t. He and his group of evil friends bully Jude and brings her so far down she starts to fight back with everything she has. But she is a mere mortal and they are not. She has no chance, right?
The fae: Most of the fae here where human-sized and human-looking with one or more animal characteristics like horns, wings, or a tale. They lure humans to eat their food or make a bargain only to become a human slave for the next 1000 years or until they die from being overworked. They were cunning and cruel both to humans and each other. There was not much magic in this book. All magical element came from the more power of persuasion and faerie foods and glamour. They cant lie and iron are generally bad for them. Humans can be protected by rowan berries, wearing your stockings inside out, etc. There were a lot of interesting aspects.
My Opinion: I really enjoyed this book and gave it 4⭐️. Jude is a great character. The author explores the characteristics of going too far; how do you know you’ve gone too far, how do you see the signs, do you want to go that far, why and why not? Looking forward to the next one in the series. Also very glad to be introduced to Holly Black’s writings and her universe.
I did just realize that this series is called “Folk of the Air”. From what I remember of the book the only thing that flew was enchanted seahorses. Is this a hint to the sequel? Will there be more winged creatures in the next books? If you’ve read this, have you got any thoughts on this?
Darkfever by Karen Marie Mooning
Sarah-Jane lives by these so I decided to try them out.
I also did a plot guessing blog about this book which can be found here.
The story: This is the first book in the Fever series to which there are 10. The books follow the main character MacKayla and we are introduced to her in the first book as she travels from Georgia to Dublin searching for answers to her sister’s murder. She finds more than she bargained for. Not only does she find some (not all) answers to her sisters’ murder but she finds answers to questions she didn’t know she had nor that her sister had. It’s a wild trip through the streets of Dublin and what happens in a bookstore after hours.
The fae: The fae in this book is far out there; they are aliens! I mean, the logic is sound, where else would creatures like this come from? They are fairly tall, around 6-9 feet and usually ugly. They have limited magical power which is centred around what they most desire or who they are. For instance, the ugliest fae seeks beauty and sucks it out of humans like a leach. It’s not a pretty picture. They can transport you or winnow you to a different location before you can even consider how ugly they are. There is a far distance between these faes and the fae in “The Cruel Pince”. All theories from other books go out the window. Think iron kills fae? Think again.
My Opinion: I really enjoyed this journey and gave it 4⭐️. I will definitely pick up the rest of the series at some point. The twist with the fae not being the classic type makes it a very interesting world which I’m curious to explore.
The Iron King by Julie Kagawa
The story: Meghan Chase is dragged out of her ordinary life as a nobody into the faerie world where she is a somebody. Her brother is replaced by a changeling and with her best friend by her side, who turns out to be a faerie, she goes to get her brother back. The faerie world is a typical “beyond-the-mist” type parallel world. She first travels to the Seelie court which is the summer court where Robin belongs. Turns out she also belongs there though nobody wants her to be there. The intrigues! She then gets a new male interest who belongs to the Unseelie court or the winter court where it’s eternal winter. The three of them get tangled in bargains with each other, which leads on a journey to the third court of a different type of faerie.
The fae: The faeries in this book are closer to the Irish mythology and trickster faeries. They are still handsome and can lure you in, but they have a trickster side which can really get you. Their magic included glamour, turning into animals, making things grow, moving objects, etc. They are heavily affected by nature and are in one with nature more so than other books I’ve read. The fae are good fighters and quick on their feet. Iron is bad for them.
My Opinion: I did really enjoy this one too and gave it a 4⭐️. At this point, I’m unsure if I’ll continue, but I might.
Bones of Faerie by Janni Lee Simmer
The story: This book is set in a post-apocalyptic setting where the war between the fae and the humans have left both worlds in disarray. The human world now contains magic, while the fae world has radiation poisoning. We follow the main character Liza as she figures out she is more than she should be or wants to be. Her society deems all things faerie/magical to be dangerous and kills all children with any sign of magic in their veins. Liza runs away from home only to figure out there is a world outside her own and it doesn’t match what she has been brought up to believe.
The fae: The fae in this book are like humans but with extra magical powers to grow things, create glow rocks, heal, etc. With all gifts comes the power of doing the opposite too, e.g. if you can heal you can also destroy.
My Opinion: I wasn’t impressed by this book and only gave it 3⭐️. The premise was interesting but Liza turned out to have a lot of special and very helpful traits. Basically, she didn’t struggle enough for my liking, lol. Also, I found one of the characters to be very annoying and a know-it-all, who never really knew anything and ended up doing stupid stuff.
Tithe, Valiant and Ironside (Modern Faerie Tales Trilogy) by Holly Black
I did a separate spoiler-free review of the entire series just the other day if you are interested.
The story: Basically, this is a trilogy of a modern fairy tales where the average girl saves the prince/monster. Its packed full of girl power without being too obvious about it. Its gritty teenage stuff with the faerie world at their hands. Loved every bit of it!!
The fae: The faerie in this world is a typical parallel world setting or beyond the mist. They are all types of creatures from human types to pixies to trolls and small Tinkerbell-faires. There is both the Unseelie and the Seelie courts, both of questionable reputation. In addition to this, there is fae living in exile in New York who are constantly surrounded by iron. Iron is poisonous to them but there are drugs which aid the exiled fae to live comfortably amongst the iron. The fae here has the power to glamour themselves and others. They can lure you in or change you for a changeling, but perform a lot of “everyday” cruelty. For example, a human child could go to bed in spring and wake up in winter, as if forgotten or seen as a thing. Their food is like a drug or alcohol to humans, but eating from their plates doesn’t bind you, you just become more receptive to their enchantments.
My Opinion: I absolutely loved this series and highly recommend it!! I gave the first two books a 4⭐️ and the last one a 5⭐️. I’m very tempted to go back and change the second book to a 5⭐️ just because it was my favourite and absolutely awesome, but I have some reservations about the drug use in the book. Arg I’m so torn!
Did you do Faebruary? How did you do and what was your favourite read? Have you read any of the fae books on my list?