Title: Brutal Curse
Author: Casey L. Bond
Genre: YA Epic Fantasy, Fairy Tale Retelling
Editor: Stacy Sanford/ The Girl with the Red Pen
Cover Designer: Melissa Stevens/ The Illustrated Author Design Services
Prince Carden of Tierney lost his home, family, and claim to the throne in one fell swoop when he rebelled against his father for a cause he knew was right. Instead of wallowing in despair, he embarks on a new journey, starting a new life on the Southern Isle. When he finds himself caught in a web woven by the famously ruthless fae queen, Coeur, he insults her and she vows to teach him the most difficult and heart-breaking lesson he will ever learn: that humans are incapable of love, and that hearts are beastly things.
Arabella wasn’t really living, she was existing and surviving as best she could. A chance encounter with Carden changes everything for her, but the deadly game he’s dragged her into might cost her life.
Still, she agrees to play. The rules the fae queen gives them are vague, and it’s obvious there are things Queen Coeur isn’t telling them. She’s sure of it. But what she does know is that together, she and Carden must pass a series of tests and trials. If they fail, game over. But if they succeed, she just might be able to restore her family and carve out the life she’s always envisioned.
Fall into this wonderland! Brutal Curse is a brilliant book. I really loved the fairytale feel with a unique twist. This story is loosely based on Alice in Wonderland. I really liked the connection there. This book has mystery, action, and just a touch of romance. This is the third book in a series but can be read as a stand-alone.
The plot of this book was great. I really liked the connection with Alice in Wonderland. The author gave us just enough to feel the resemblance, but then turned around and made it her own unique story. I really liked the game aspect of this story as well. If you liked A Court of Thorns and Roses, then you will most likely like this book as well. It has a similar feel to it.
I liked the characters in this book. Carden is such a great character. I really liked him in the last book, but this book took him to a new level. The deepness of his caring is truly amazing. Then you have Arabella. She is such a strong and resilient character. I loved watching her fight tooth and nail for what she believed in.
Usually I would talk about heat in a book, but I don’t feel this book is much about heat. While there is obvious connection between the characters, the heat is muted by the storyline. With that being said, it wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. I would have liked a bit more romance, but I was happy with the way this story turned out.
The writing style of this book is good. The pace of the story is steady. The story is told from multiple points of view, but it is done in a way that is easy to read and relevant to the story. I liked the other characters in the story as well. As sad as it is to say, I really enjoyed the villain. She was written perfectly evil.
Overall, I really enjoyed this story. This was a great fairy tale retelling. Carden is my favorite male of this series. He really endeared himself to me. I also really enjoyed Rule. I loved him just as much. I was torn between the two. The twists and turns in this story will keep your head spinning in a good way. I would recommend this story to others.
Writing Style: 5/5
Award-winning author Casey L. Bond resides in Milton, West Virginia with her husband and their two beautiful daughters. When she’s not busy being a domestic goddess and chasing her baby girls, she loves to write young adult and new adult fiction.
You can find more information about Bond’s books via the following links: