Synopsis:

The Cruel Prince meets City of Bones in this thrilling urban fantasy set in the magical underworld of Toronto where four queer teens race to stop a serial killer before their crimes expose the hidden world of faeries to humans.

Choose your player.

The half-fae outcast, desperate for acceptance.

The tempestuous Fury, exiled and hellbent on revenge.

The dutiful prince, determined to earn his place.

The brooding guardian, burdened by a terrible secret.

Each holds a key to solving a series of ritualistic murders that threaten to expose faeries to the human world. But they cannot do it alone. To track down the killer, they will have to form a tenuous alliance, putting their differences – and conflicts – aside.

Failure risks the destruction of the faerie and human worlds alike. And time is running out.

Time to roll the dice. 

Review:

Thank you so much Hodder & Stoughton and NetGalley for a free e-copy of this book. 

This review is going to sound like a giant cliché and I apologise in advance. It’s because whenever I love a book perfect like this one, I am terrible at writing a 5-star review. I don’t read much urban fantasy, but I decided to pick up this one as the cover keeps showing up on my social feeds. 

This book was a massive surprise. It had a slow start, and at 20% I was actually debating with myself about continuing or not. I am glad I stick with it because after that it was incredibly difficult to put it down. 

The story goes around Nausicaä, a fury who was exiled from her realm after killing mortals without permission. She is stranded in the human world until a series of murders force her to get involved with the royal fae family and another human to discover who or what is behind the death of ironborn children. 

The most impressive feature of this story is the epic world-building, whenever you think you’ve figured out this world, the writer adds something to the scenario or introduces new supernatural beings, or new rules to the magic system expanding it even further. That was absolutely mind-blowing, how everything from this world was all fitted into an intricated web of faerie politics and mysterious murders. Can you hear my brain exploding? Still, I had the feeling we just scratched the surface of this world and the writer has more to show us with the next book. 

I also appreciated that as a change, this story takes place both in modern Toronto and fae world and it’s amazing how mixing these two realities totally works. I loved that it wasn’t the typical New York or London, a lovely change of scenery. 

On top of everything, you get a book with a great diversity representation across main and side characters. One of the main characters, Nausicaä is probably the main reason why I loved this story so much. She is such a great character, she talks with no filter, she says whatever she thinks about and she has no problem admitting she has mental health issues, and that she went to see a therapist sometimes. And also, she is absolutely hilarious. I loved all the nerdy jokes, all the references to videogames and Star Wars. 

I truly enjoyed every aspect of this story, the plot and the character, and I can’t wait for the sequel. I think it’s darker, grittier and more mature than City of Bones and on the topic, I would add that I strongly recommend checking the content/trigger warnings first, because this book explores a wide range of tough issues. 

Side note about this e-arc, I was confused about Hero’s POV as there was no physical sign or break when they started and they were just attached at the end of another character’s POV but I guess this will be fixed in the final version. 

This book is going to be your best read of this Winter and thanks to the vivid descriptions and almost informal writing style you will devour this book in no time!