Publisher: Balzer & Bray
Source: PurchasedRating: ★★★★
Graceling meets Beauty and the Beast in this sweeping fantasy about one girl's journey to fulfill her destiny and the monster who gets in her way-by stealing her heart.
Based on the classic fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, Cruel Beauty is a dazzling love story about our deepest desires and their power to change our destiny.
Since birth, Nyx has been betrothed to the evil ruler of her kingdom-all because of a foolish bargain struck by her father. And since birth, she has been in training to kill him.
With no choice but to fulfill her duty, Nyx resents her family for never trying to save her and hates herself for wanting to escape her fate. Still, on her seventeenth birthday, Nyx abandons everything she's ever known to marry the all-powerful, immortal Ignifex. Her plan? Seduce him, destroy his enchanted castle, and break the nine-hundred-year-old curse he put on her people.
But Ignifex is not at all what Nyx expected. The strangely charming lord beguiles her, and his castle-a shifting maze of magical rooms-enthralls her.
As Nyx searches for a way to free her homeland by uncovering Ignifex's secrets, she finds herself unwillingly drawn to him. Even if she could bring herself to love her sworn enemy, how can she refuse her duty to kill him? With time running out, Nyx must decide what is more important: the future of her kingdom, or the man she was never supposed to love.
Oh wow! Before reading Cruel Beauty I thought it was just a retelling of Beauty and the Beast, I didn't know that Rosamund Hodge also combined it with Greek Myth. So I was super happy when I found out. It's a fantastic story that captures the reader's heart as soon as you read the first line.
Meet Nyx, she isn't an innocent, cheerful, optimistic heroine. She has hatred in her heart and she is somewhat selfish but that didn't make me hate her. Instead I really liked her. Nyx is a complex character and you can see that in one person the companion and cruelty can live side by side just fine. It's not an easy thing to distinguish the good guy from the bad guy since the world is not black and white. Ignifex is so much like Nyx and I've to say they do make a perfect couple together =) Well the romance is good, Rosamund Hodge knows how to build the tension and to make it so sweet that I have no complain. And not to mention the mystery is really good too. I couldn't put the book down until I had all the answers. At first I thought I had the answer but this book is full with twists and turns that I had no idea who Ignifex was until the last few chapters.
Overall, I had an amazing time reading Cruel Beauty. The ending was nicely explained and it ended well in my opinion. Go check it out because this is an incredible fairy tale retelling (and with that gorgeous cover, well just perfect to have on your book shelves).