Review Detail

Heartless Featured
Young Adult Fiction 1801
twist on fairytale
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
"Heartless" is the origin story for the Queen of Hearts (of Alice in Wonderland fame). Catherine, destined to be the queen of hearts, is a young woman who dreams of being a baker and falling in love. As the Marquess's daughter, however, this is not practical. Like most noblewomen, she is expected to marry well and live in idle luxury. Despite this, she constantly dreams of making her own way as a common laborer and working with her best friend and maid, Mary Ann, who has a head for numbers and business. Catherine plans to feed the king her most magnificent creation yet and get his blessing as the best baker in Hearts, starting her business off on the right foot. However, her plans go awry when the King's thoughts are less about her pastries and more about her suitability as his queen.

Catherine's life is further complicated by the new court joker from Chess, Jest, who she first saw in a dream and who is handsomely devastating. He saves her from a tight corset at the ball where she was to be made queen. Although Catherine knows she should marry the king and give up her dreams, she can't help but wish for the life she wants, as a simple baker, married to Jest and working with Mary Ann. Fate does not agree with her.

The book is somewhat slow to get going, as this alternate world is built and characters (from Alice's adventures) are introduced throughout. Some of them seem to be included just for the connections, but I found most of them to be a little extraneous/unnecessary in this book, dragging out the story a bit too much. However, the last 25% was absolutely incredible and the way that the story is woven was unexpected and made so much sense that it was almost nonsensical (in the way only Wonderland can be). Everything comes together in such an unpredictable way that makes so much sense in the end. I was at the edge of my seat seeing it all happen.

The romance was pretty good between Catherine and Jest, but I wasn't over-the-moon about their relationship. I saw how she could get caught in him, but this was like most teenager/Romeo&Juliet style insta-love and passionate/overwhelming lust. The king really didn't seem so bad, but he represented everything that was keeping Catherine trapped, while Jest was everything she ever dreamed her life could hold. You have to be able to buy into Jest/Catherine a little more than I could while reading. That being said, it was easy to see why they became so passionate about the other and how this played out at the end.

Overall, it was an incredible villain origin story that ended so fantastically the meanderings along the way were (mostly) forgotten. The author says she was inspired by Gregory Maguire's books, and I could definitely see the influence. For fans of Maguire, this book will definitely be a win!
Report this review Was this review helpful to you? 0 0

Comments

Already have an account? or Create an account
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
As the daughter of a successful Major League pitcher, Charlie...
Serious Moonlight
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
After an awkward first encounter, Birdie and Daniel are forced...
Sway
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
In Kat Spears’s hilarious and often poignant debut, high school...
Scarlet Epstein Hates it Here
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Meet Scarlett Epstein, BNF (Big Name Fan) in her online...
The Beautiful (The Beautiful, #1)
 
3.3
 
0.0 (0)
New York Times bestselling author Renée Ahdieh returns with...
The End and Other Beginnings: Stories from the Future
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Bestselling Divergent and Carve the Mark author Veronica Roth...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Adam is living the dream, literally.... There are two...
Colliding Skies
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
Since Skye Reilly can remember, she has been looking...
What Makes Us
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
A viral video reveals a teen’s dark family history,...
Dating Nashville
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Becks: How does a straight guy accidentally come out...
Take the Mic: Fictional Stories of Everyday Resistance
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
A young adult anthology featuring fictional stories of everyday...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Leonardo Cantrell is a painfully shy sixteen-year-old who cannot look...
Dog and Rabbit
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
A funny, sweet story of unrequited friendship from the creator...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Lena and Campbell aren't friends. ...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
The youngest doctor in America, an Indian-American teen makes her...
Prophecy Untold (Shadow Realms book 3)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Finding out my mother was taken by the demons was...

Latest Member Reviews

The Burning Shadow (Origin Series, #2)
 
5.0
"I’m not going to lie….I read The Burning Shadow in two days. It could’ve been one sitting if my eyelids..."
The Grace Year
 
5.0
"It’s been one week since I finished The Grace Year by Kim Liggett as I sit down to start this..."
 
4.3
"I started out reading an ARC of Symptoms of a Heartbreak, but then I switched to reading a hardcover in..."
Fireborne (The Aurelian Cycle, #1)
 
4.3
"I’m going to start out this post by letting it be known by all and sundry that I was provided..."
Sick Kids in Love
 
5.0
"SICK KIDS IN LOVE is a beautiful story about love- as well as invisible illness/disability AND NOBODY DIES! (I do..."
The Light at the Bottom of the World (The Light at the Bottom of the World, #1)
 
5.0
"THE LIGHT AT THE BOTTOM OF THE WORLD is a compelling and atmospheric YA fantasy/science fiction. In the future, the..."
Conceal, Don't Feel (Twisted Tales, #7)
 
5.0
"If you adored FROZEN, you need to get your hands on this Twisted Tale which reimagines the story if Anna..."
The End and Other Beginnings: Stories from the Future
 
4.0
"THE END AND OTHER BEGINNINGS is the latest from DIVERGENT author, Veronica Roth. The novel is comprised of six YA..."
The Bookworm Crush
 
5.0
"THE BOOKWORM CRUSH is an absolutely charming romantic comedy with all sorts of booklover homages. Amy McIntyre is @redheadrecs and..."
Scared Little Rabbits
 
3.0
"SCARED LITTLE RABBITS follows Nora (aka Eleanor, Lowercase) as she sets out on a summer camp adventure that resulted in..."
A Constellation of Roses
 
5.0
"A CONSTELLATION OF ROSES is a beautiful story of familial love and healing. Trix has been trying to make her..."
Frankly in Love
 
5.0
"FRANKLY IN LOVE is a surprisingly deep and heartfelt read. Although it is described as a rom-com, this is not..."
American Royals
 
4.7
"What if at the end of America’s Revolutionary War, George Washington was offered a crown and what if he said..."
Take the Mic: Fictional Stories of Everyday Resistance
 
4.0
"This is the type of book I’d like to see included in school curriculums. The stories are like wide open..."
When the Stars Lead to You
 
4.7
"WHEN THE STARS LED TO YOU is quite the emotional YA contemporary. While on the surface it seems like a..."
We Are the Perfect Girl
 
3.3
"'We Are the Perfect Girl' by Ariel Kaplan is a Cyrano De Bergerac style story. There are a host of..."
Stranger Things: Runaway Max
 
4.7
"'Stranger Things: Runaway Max' by Brenna Yovanoff provides an intriguing look into Max's life before and during her time in..."
Crown of Oblivion
 
5.0
"Engrossing and completely thrilling, CROWN OF OBLIVION is a fantastic new YA fantasy that I highly recommend. Dealing with themes..."
 
4.7
"Four very different high school girls plan to spend one month together in GIRLS OF JULY, and they each have..."
 
3.0
"BETWEEN WORLDS: FOLKTALES OF BRITAIN AND IRELAND is a collection of short stories that have been passed down over centuries..."