ABOUT THE BOOK:
Author: Marissa Meyer
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Publishing: November 8, 2016 (Feiwel & Friends)
Format: Hardcover, 453 pages
Source: Featured book in subscription box
“It is a dangerous thing to unbelieve something only because it frightens you.”
Catherine may be one of the most desired girls in Wonderland and a favorite of the unmarried King, but her interests lie elsewhere. A talented baker, she wants to open a shop and create delectable pastries. But for her mother, such a goal is unthinkable for a woman who could be a queen.
At a royal ball where Cath is expected to receive the King’s marriage proposal, she meets handsome and mysterious Jest. For the first time, she feels the pull of true attraction. At the risk of offending the King and infuriating her parents, she and Jest enter into a secret courtship.
Cath is determined to choose her own destiny. But in a land thriving with magic, madness, and monsters, fate has other plans.
Some books take you by surprise. Heartless by Marissa Meyer was one such book for me.
Some readers may look at this book, see Meyer’s name on it and expect greatness because of her other work, but this is the first book I have read by her. Of course, I certainly plan to change that! I have been involved in the book community long enough now to know that Meyer’s Lunar Chronicles are adored (yet they are still on my ever-growing TBR list – fail!). The newness of her writing to me added to the shock-factor, I believe. Her writing style is so fluid and concise; I loved it!
Some readers may also look at this book, understand that Heartless is a prequel, of sorts, to Alice in Wonderland or an origin story, perhaps, of the Queen of Hearts, so there should be an air of familiarity about it. Yet, I found this to be so original.
Heartless follows the story of Cath, a young girl in Wonderland with a passion for baking but a future already laid out for her by her parents. She seems to be destined to marry the King, but she is determined to create a path of her own. And, the mysterious Jest adds to the mix, confusing Cath in more ways than one.
The story line is full of magic and marvel, danger and chaos, as one would expect from any tale from Wonderland. Meyer does the whimsical world justice and pays enough tribute while spinning her own narrative.
The characters in Alice in Wonderland have some pretty big shoes to fill, and although Heartless is not so much a retelling as a prequel, I still felt Meyer had to be careful how she treated the characters she featured that were already so greatly loved from the Lewis Carroll original. Gratefully, in my opinion, Meyer nailed it!
I fell in love with so many characters in Heartless. Even the “bad” characters…they aren’t bad, as in poorly executed; they are bad, as in I loved to hate them. Cath made me feel so much for her. Even though this is a fantasy, I saw a lot of me in her earlier on. And, I absolutely adored Jest. Of course I did! Meyer had to make me love him so much! My deep affection towards the characters is what added to the complete destruction of my heart in the end.
THIS BOOK UTTERLY CRUSHED ME!
I am rounding back to where I began and how Heartless took me by surprise. So much about this book surprised me in a good way. The writing, the premise, the characters, the ending!
Overall, I would absolutely recommend Heartless. I often struggle with enjoying retellings, so I am going to say this is for more than fans of retellings (and I don’t even like to categorize this book as that). I thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of this book, and I truly believe others will, too.
Until next time…xo