Cruel Beauty

Cruel Beauty

Book - 2014 | First edition
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Betrothed to the demon who rules her country and trained all her life to kill him, seventeen-year-old Nyx Triskelion must now fulfill her destiny and move to the castle to be his wife.
Publisher: New York, NY : Balzer + Bray, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, [2014]
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2014
ISBN: 9780062224736
0062224735
9780062224743
0062224743
Branch Call Number: TEEN
Characteristics: 346 pages ; 22 cm

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Marilyn34
Oct 23, 2017

Even though it's a Beauty and the Beast retelling, I felt like the idea of beauty seen even in the ugly can overcome anything if you're willing to let that beauty take over.

Check out my review of "Cruel Beauty" on my blog at:
http://axarr.blogspot.com/2015/11/review-wednesday-cruel-beauty-by.html

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feyrerhys
Sep 14, 2017

loved this book. I totally ship them, I liked how it was based off of beauty and the beast, but with a dark twist to it.

c
Chloe565
Apr 19, 2017

I really loved this book even though Ignifex and Shade were the same, and she liked them both it was still really great. I love the ending! It's so cute

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TEENREVIEWBOARD
Mar 17, 2017

The cover of this book is gorgeous, which I guess contributes somewhat to the book's amazingness. This is not your average Beauty and The Beast spin, as it involves a lot more darkness than light. "Beauty" resents being the sister, chosen by her father due to a despicable trade, to be married off to the "Beast". That's basically the story line, except beauty has a younger sister, and their mother died from this trade. It is her duty to now go "kill" her husband, which I found rather interesting. She is a strong, fearless woman with only her mindset and assets, which makes her conversations with him rather direct. Definitely a good read before the new movie! 3.5/5 stars
- @Siri of the Teen Review Board of the Hamilton Public Library

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MariCL
Apr 22, 2016

Surprisingly very good read

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withthebutterflies
Jan 11, 2016

My eyes scanned over the shelves of fiction as I wandered Chapters, looking for my next book. My gaze rested on a beautifully designed red and black cover, the words Cruel Beauty in cursive. Though the cover made no sense to me until after I read the book, its intricate design and caption made me unable to put it down. I left with the book.

I will start first with a heartfelt thank you to the author for creating this novel. Rosamund Hodge is a brilliant and talented young writer, and I can’t wait to begin reading whatever else she has to write (starting with Crimson Bound). Her words are lyrical and descriptive, and even though the story slowly unfolds, my eyes were glued to the pages.

What I struggled most about with this book was the inability to read very quickly, yet very slowly at the same time. I wanted to reach the end to know what happened, while at the same time I wanted to linger over every word.

To tell you a little bit about the story that has left me so breathless:

Cruel Beauty is a tale as old as time. The classic Beauty and the Beast story that I know and love was infused with elements of Greek mythology (particularly Persephone and Hades), Romeo and Juliet, and perhaps most interestingly: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

The Gentle Lord, “Ignifex”, is master of shadows and bargains. Before she was born, Nyx’s father struck a deal with the Gentle Lord – the ability to have children with his wife at the price of one of his daughter’s hand in marriage.
Nyx was essentially raised to slay the dragon – only the dragon is her fiance and the dark demon who has enslaved her people’s country. Bitter about her lot in life, and full of hatred for her new husband, Nyx searches for a way to quickly end her torment and assassinate her captor. But as she unravels the secrets of the Gentle Lord’s castle, she must come to terms with her feelings for both Ignifex and his slave, Shade, as well as her own cruel heart.

My Rating: 5/5
This book may not deserve 5 out of 5 in every sense of literary rating, but based off of how much I enjoyed reading it, Cruel Beauty has earned a 5 out of 5.

This book was breathtaking. I fell in love with the world Hodge created, with Nyx, and with the Gentle Lord. I rooted for true love to conquer all, and desperately clung to the pages as I neared the conclusion to the book.

I loved the way Hodge created a love triangle in this novel. Nyx was drawn both to the seemingly pure-hearted captive, as well as to his supposedly pure evil captor. What hit me most is the idea that loving two polar opposites is the same as loving a whole – we are all both good and evil, we are all complex characters.

The book ended way too fast for my liking, and though she says that she is done with the world of Cruel Beauty, I can only secretly hope for a sequel or spin-off in the future.

I am resisting re-reading it with all my will until my 50 books challenge is done. But I can almost guarantee that book 51 will be Cruel Beauty.

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MicaelaMuldoon
Jan 08, 2016

I read this when it first came out, but I kept putting off reviewing it because I didn’t want to taint it. (Doesn’t that spell confidence?) I have so much to say, or rather so much that I think and feel about this, but I feel like my words won’t be adequate. Also, I don’t want to ruin anything for people who still haven’t read it. Nonetheless, I’ll try to produce the right words.

This is a gorgeous blend of mythology and fairy tale. Absolutely gorgeous. This book is perfect in that sense. The world-building, atmosphere, language, setting, story arc, and character types are all right on the mark. The creativity of this re-imagining is astounding.

Three issues I take with in this book: 1) I wish there had been more interaction between Nyx and Ignifex. The romance was just a tad too quick for me. I wanted them to have more conversations about just anything. I wanted them to get to know each other more. 2) Shade. I did not really want this character around. I would have preferred the romance to be just between Ignifex and Nyx, although Shade was necessary and his presence makes sense in the context of the big reveal. Perhaps it’s not so much his existence that I didn’t like, but the way he interacted with Nyx. I would have wanted him to be more of a best friend character. I think that would have worked a lot better. It might have something to do with my usual hatred of love triangles. 3) I wish there had been more going on than Nyx looking throughout the castle, even though that was significant to her mission. I just wanted a few other events to be going on, day after day, maybe to ratchet up the suspense or add more layers to this already rich world. Hodge could have really played on that.

Despite my complaints, I really liked this book. My second paragraph says it all, but I don’t want to spoil it; it has to be experienced. By the way, the ending is a bit confusing, and more than a bit heart-wrenching, but it is perfect in its strangeness and the way it matches the myth/fairy tale vibe of the story. I’ve said it before; endings can’t always work out perfectly. The ending is ultimately happy, though.

Such a fascinating book. I would definitely say read it. It’s very original, despite being based on ages-old tales.

j
jodoyle
Jun 25, 2015

It was an interesting take on Beauty and the Beast. I enjoyed it, definitely, but I found myself really wanting an epilogue or something; I wished you got to know what became of them. Still it was a good, fairly quick read. She did a great job of throwing in little twists that you don't expect, and I loved that it involved Greek/Roman mythology. Also, I always love bad guys like Ignifex. The characters in general inspired a good mix of emotions, though I'm not sure how I felt about Astraia's personality change. Oh! And as another patron noted, it had elements from Bluebeard, which was very unexpected and made me kind of happy because I feel like I've never seen any kind of adaptation of that tale.

ChristineT_RPL Dec 11, 2014

This is an adaptation of Beauty and the Beast with some Greek Mythology thown in. Our main character, Nyx, since birth, has been betrothed to the evil ruler of her kingdom, because of a bargain struck by her father. Also since birth Nyx has been training to kill her betrothed, Igniflex.

On her seventeenth birthday, Nyx has to leave her home to marry the all-powerful, immortal Ignifex. She has to not only seduce this awful man, but also destroy the enchanted castle and break a 900 year old curse, this will help set her people free.

But it turns out that Ignifex is quite charming and sort of wins over Nyx. She starts falling for him.
note: this one takes a bit to get into as the author Hodge is creating a whole new world for the reader to become immersed in.
I liked the way that even though this is a fantasy the main character Nyx reacts very realistically, she is not perfect and not always likable but she is very real.

hey123_0 Oct 28, 2014

wrost ending

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blue_dog_8329
Oct 08, 2016

blue_dog_8329 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

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