The Cruel Prince (The Folk of the Air)
☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
No spoilers and colorful language abound! This review contains quotes of the final published edition. They have been carefully chosen to prohibit spoils, but none the less, they are still in here.
Holly Black is a powerhouse of an author, there is no way around that. Black's writing is both profoundly understated and eloquent beyond measure. The way she can pack a single sentence with tremendous emotion and vivid imagery leaves me speechless and craving more. In addition to the gorgeous prose, her character development is delicious, The Cruel Prince is nothing short of a novel worthy of her name.
... and this is about where I lose ability to speak coherently and start gushing. I've decided to spare you, instead, I offer you proof of my above statement. Come with me on a journey, 10 quotes to whet the appetite.
I can see why humans succumb to the beautiful nightmare of the Court, why they willingly drown in it. I know I shouldn't love it as I do, stolen as I am from the mortal world, my parents murdered. But I love it all the same.
These clothes are a costume for me. I am playing dress-up in ignorance. I no more can guess the assumptions that go along with glittering sneakers than a child in a dragon costume knows what real dragons would make of the color of her scales.
...I say, not giving her the satisfaction of being shocked by what she said about our parents. She acts like we don't remember, like there's some way I am ever going to forget. She acts like it's her personal tragedy and hers alone.
Maybe growing up the way we have, bad things feel good to us. Or maybe we are stupid in the exact same way as every other idiot mortal who's pined away for another bite of goblin fruit. Maybe it doesn't matter.
Instead, I shake my head at the thrill running through me at the sheer lunacy of what I'm about to do. It's the thrill of leaping without being able to see the ground below you, right before you realize it's called falling.
...he sees something else entirely. There's an intensity in his gaze that makes me stand up a little straighter, despite the dirt. "Because you're like a story that hasn't happened yet. Because I want to see what you will do. I want to be part of the unfolding tale."
I cannot seem to contort myself back into the shape of a dutiful child. I am coming unraveled. I am coming undone.
I smile wider, and kissed him longer, that is a kind of deceit that even the Folk cannot Condemn. Now, however, the night feels like one long, impossible dream.
For a moment, we just look at each other. He's a monster, so if I want to do a very bad thing, he's not going to judge me for it. Much.
That's what comes of hungering for something: You forget to check if it's rotten before you gobble it down.
It's gorgeous. It just is, so is all of her writing. BUY IT. READ IT. LOVE IT.