Genre: Young-Adult, Fantasy
Release Date: November 8, 2016
This is a book that I almost gave up on so many times. And it wasn’t because it didn’t have an interesting plot. I mean, this is the making of the Queen of Hearts (before she went on to demanding beheading for shits and giggles). That’s cool! And it wasn’t because of the writing. This is a very well-written novel. The book simply bored me.
The starting was good. I was having a great time with how Marissa Meyer was introducing the world Lewis Carrol created. The book was whimsical and Cath was very sweet. Her wanting to open a bakery, how passion for sweets, her meeting with Jest, the court joker… it was all very cute. I guess where things went wrong is that the cuteness simply went on and on. It felt like nothing was happening even when things were happening. And Cath became exhausting.
She never stood up for herself. She didn’t talk about the bakery because her parents wouldn’t approve. She didn’t go out with the guy she liked because her parents wouldn’t approve. She didn’t say no to the king’s proposition because her parents didn’t want her to. Hell, she never even objected to her mother deciding her clothing!
I swear, by the time we got three-quarters in, I almost wanted her to turn into the Queen of Hearts because at least that women took action.
Boredom aside, the ending made up for a lot of the things. I loved the ending. It wasn’t a happy ending, obviously (does the Queen of Hearts seem like the product of a Happily Ever After?) but it was so right. It makes me hate the author because I can’t even hate the author for doing such horrible shit to the characters, because things came together so well. And yes, I’m aware that I just contradicted myself with the author-hate things.
But basically, what I’m saying is, the beginning and the ending were both good while the middle chunk was not. Cath’s narrative got dull after a while and some scenes felt like they were present only so we could explore as much of Wonderland as possible.
I did enjoy the book, overall, but if the pacing had been better, I would’ve liked it more. I still recommend reading it because my opinions are more on the unpopular side in this case. And I hope you like it.
Oh and, almost forgot! I love Jest!