Home book review [Book-Review] The Cruel Prince (Folk of the Air #1)

[Book-Review] The Cruel Prince (Folk of the Air #1)

by Samy
Published: Last Updated on 5 minutes read

edited on September 13th, 2023 at 08:41 pm

“The Cruel Prince” is the first book in the “Folk of the Air” trilogy by Holly Black. It is a young adult fantasy novel that follows the story of Jude Duarte, a human girl who is taken to the Faerie realm along with her twin sister Taryn and her older sister Vivi after their parents are murdered.


As I was in the mood of something fantasy again and saw some quotes from the book, I thought I’d give it a try. For some reason, I’m not the biggest fan of Faery-stories but so far, the frst book didn’t disappoint me.

The book is beautifully written, with vivid descriptions of the Faerie world and its inhabitants. The world-building is rich and immersive, with its own set of rules, politics, and magic that draw the reader into the story.
I really enjoy the writing style here, it’s really simple to read. And the author explains a lot of things which I am glad for, especially in a fantsy setting.

The themes of power, politics, family, and identity are explored in a compelling way, making the story thought-provoking and relevant. Holly Black’s writing style is enchanting, with a dark and lush tone that adds to the overall atmosphere of the story.

Jude, in particular, is a strong and determined protagonist who faces numerous challenges and struggles as a human in a world where she is considered inferior. The relationships between the characters, including the complicated dynamics between Jude and the faerie prince Cardan, are well-developed and add depth to the story.
I kinda enjoyed the interactions between those two a lot. Even tho, they act as enemies on the most part. But also Locke is a quite interesting character here, Vivi, her oldest sister, and Taryn, her twin are nice to hear of as well. Even tho, through the story gets along, I enjoy Vivi a bit more.
Oak gets more and more involved in the story and becomes more interesting to me as reader as well.

The plot is filled with political intrigue, courtly maneuverings, and betrayals, keeping the reader hooked from beginning to end. The pacing is well-balanced, with a mix of action, suspense, and romance that keeps the story engaging.
So far, everything that happend in the first book, I didn’t expect any of it to happen. Not the slaughtery nor the crowning. I mean, it was planned but not like it turned out to be in the end but no worries, I won’t tell any spoilers here.

Final Thoughts

“The Cruel Prince” is a captivating and thrilling read that offers a fresh and imaginative take on Faerie lore. It turned out to be a great choice for me as a fan of fantasy. I’m not much into it but particularly those who enjoy stories with strong female protagonists, political intrigue might enjoy it a lot here. It also gives a touch of romance. Although the story focus on so many things, that touch of romance was a bit less for my usual reads. So, I personally wouldn’t even count that.
But, as I usual avoid Faerie stories, I haven’t regretted the read so far.

I’m quite curious about the second book!

Original Fanart drawn by ZeDk4m

Rating: C

A+ : 10-9.3 | A: 9.2-8.7 | A- : 8.6-8.0 || B+ : 7.9-7.3 | B: 7.2-6.7 | B- : 6.6-6.0 || C+ : 5.9-5.3 | C: 5.2-4.7 | C- : 4.6-4.0 ||
D+ : 3.9-3.3 | D: 3.2-2.7 | D- : 2.6-2.0 || E+: 2.1-2.4 | E : 2.5-1.8 || F: 1.9-0

What do you think? Have you read The Cruel Prince already? Do you agree or not? Let me know in the comments!

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