Published: January 7, 2020
Read as: Hardcover, owned
Average Goodreads rating: 4.16
My rating: 4.5
Find the heir, win the crown.
The curse is finally broken, but Prince Rhen of Emberfall faces darker troubles still. Rumors circulate that he is not the true heir and that forbidden magic has been unleashed in Emberfall. Although Rhen has Harper by his side, his guardsman Grey is missing, leaving more questions than answers.
Win the crown, save the kingdom.
Rumored to be the heir, Grey has been on the run since he destroyed Lilith. He has no desire to challenge Rhen–until Karis Luran once again threatens to take Emberfall by force. Her own daughter Lia Mara sees the flaws in her mother’s violent plan, but can she convince Grey to stand against Rhen, even for the good of Emberfall?
The heart-pounding, compulsively readable saga continues as loyalties are tested and new love blooms in a kingdom on the brink of war. (Goodreads)
“It is not weakness to wish for peace.”
MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS FOR A CURSE SO DARK AND LONELY
When I read A Curse so Dark and Lonely early in 2019 I was absolutely blown away. I, like many people, had grown tired of retellings and I had never been particularly fond of Beauty and the Beast in the first place. But, I started reading it on a whim and was quickly swept up in this world and the characters Kemmerer had created.
When early reviews started rolling in for A Heart so Fierce and Broken they were all over the place. Some people loved it, some people completely hated it, and still others were bored by it. It left me a little hesitant to start reading when the book was released.
I’m happy to report that the hesitation was unfounded and this book was absolute magic!
While the first book revolved around Rhen and Harper, this story is told from the perspectives of Grey and a new character, Lia Mara. I adored Grey in the first book. Loyal, fierce, intelligent, and with a good heart buried under the pain he had experienced over his time trapped within the curse. Grey now has left Emberfall and is hiding with no wish to return to the court.
Sadly, our wishes are often not our reality.
Grey’s reluctant adventure in this story had me wrapped around its fingers. I couldn’t help but be swept up as Grey and his new traveling companions made their way through Rhen’s territories and into the realm of Emberfall’s enemies.
This story showed carefully thought out character development, a cast with highly varied personalities and drives, and a plot that you couldn’t help but feel invested in. The new characters found their way into my heart and I rooted for them every moment, every step.
Is this story very different from the first book? Yes, absolutely. I think that in part is what makes it so special. We are no longer battling for love and the monster in the woods, we are battling for peace and freedom. Often, peace comes with a high price tag.
If you have been on the fence about reading this series or continuing with it I highly recommend that you do so. It is so easy to get swept away by this story and find yourself completely immersed. I will be waiting on pins and needles for the conclusion of this trilogy.