|Print List Price:||$10.99|
Save $1.00 (9%)
Price set by seller.
Your Memberships & Subscriptions
Cruel Beauty (Cruel Beauty Universe Book 1) Kindle Edition
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
From School Library Journal
- ASIN : B00DB365MK
- Publisher : Balzer + Bray; Reprint edition (January 28, 2014)
- Publication date : January 28, 2014
- Language : English
- File size : 1230 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 357 pages
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #273,261 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Reviews with images
Top reviews from the United States
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
The book has a lot of Greek mythology in it so you read story after depressing story about gods screwing over people and people deserving it.
The romance is kind of....eh. It wasn't awful but there was just something missing . I feel like the pacing of their romance wasn't realistic and I never really got why the two main characters loved each other. She obviously was starving for love because her family life was horrible and he was a demon so...that's kind of lonely . I get why they would form an attraction but the kind of love that they would DIE for? I feel like there wasn't enough positive interactions between them to have that kind of bond.
Another thing that drove me crazy is that the house they live in has an infinite number of rooms and there is soooo much time spent on the description of the rooms. It honestly got kind of boring.
Overall it wasn't a bad book. There were some interesting aspects to it and I'll definitely remember it. It just wasn't really my thing but maybe it will be yours ?!? I won't really recommend it to family and friends but I thought it deserved more than 2 stars .
Nyx receives a key that will allow her to unlock certain doors and explore rooms of the castle . Every day she searches her new home in hopes of finding a way to destroy her husband while he makes evil bargains with desperate people. However, Nyx soon finds herself falling in love with Ignifex and must choose between saving her people or protecting the only one that she truly loves.
Cruel Beauty is not what I had expected it to be. It has a very complex story line and is focused around Greek mythology. At times I had to re-read portions to make sure that I was understanding the Greek history as I am not very familiar with it, but overall I enjoyed the plot twists that kept me guessing throughout the book.
˜ The first few chapters was an info dump for me and I had to force myself to get through them. Once getting through those initial chapters though I understand that information was needed I just wish the author would have went about it in a different way.
˜ I was able to guess part of the twist pretty early on. While that didn’t affect my attention to the book at all I still wish it would have taken me a little longer to figure it out.
˜ I could have done without all of the talk about the Gods ad Hermectic Arts. Every time those cam up I found myself trying to get through those parts a fast as possible because honestly I was having a hard time keeping up an understanding what was going on.
˜ Retelling: I love how this is a retelling of Beauty and the Beast. If you don’t know Beauty and the Beast is my all time favorite Disney movie. While the concept of this book is completely different to Beauty and the Beast you still get some of the main similarities.
˜ Ignifex: I couldn’t help but love Ignifex even though he is the bad boy you aren’t meant to love.
˜ Nyx: She is the main character in this book and its told from her perspective so go through what she goes through. While she goes through so many emotions which makes it hard to figure out what her true feelings are I couldn’t help but feel sorry for her. I loved her character and I could completely understand where she was coming from.
˜ The Writing: I think the writing was amazing. The author did an amazing job at painting a picture for you. It wasn’t so detailed that it would get on your nerves. It was detailed just enough for me to be able to visualize the world in my head.
It's getting so frustrating and sad.
Anyways, I was expecting a lot more from this book. It started off ok, I was entertained and intrigued by what was going on. We have a girl who's entire life has been told that she's this sacrifice. She has to go and marry the one evilest of them all. The monster that keeps everyone at bay, scared that he'll just kill them all. So she does, but she's in for something completely different to what she wasn't expecting, what she'd been told her entire life.
The book itself is kind of slow and the timeline itself is kind of weird. It feels like no time has passed, and she's living eternal days, because the transitions aren't that obvious. But then, some things happen way too fast, like she was falling in love way too fast and she was making decisions no one with her upbringing would. It was weird and I couldn't relate to her or feel for her. The timeline itself was way too confusing, I wondered a lot if maybe I was getting the whole concept of time wrong, and I'm pretty sure I was and that was too frustrating. By the middle of the book, it got a bit more shape, but still.
I think there were a bunch of unanswered questions by the time I finished it. The ending felt rushed and it felt like it didn't explain anything, more like left a bunch of new questions up in the air and I know there won't be any answers, since the second book of the series is about different characters.
Top reviews from other countries
When hovering over the star rating I was somewhere between a 3 star and a 4 star rating. I personally give it a 4 star - it wasn't brilliant, but I liked it. But, when thinking of others, I think this might be a 3 star. For a first novel, this is very good, but it doesn't work as a standalone novel. The writing is fairly good, but where its weakness lies is in the world building. World building is hard for any fantasy writer, but it's an essential aspect of the genre. There are aspects of the world that are not fully explained and that in the end kind of get forgotten about and lost. The magic system is confusing and kind of gets lost at times. There is no map so you don't get the scale of the world either and the history of it, though it sounds deep and rich, is only sparingly explained. If you can get past all that however, you will find an intriguing plot featuring a mix of Greek, Roman and Fairytale lore in a blend of Hades and Persephone and Beauty and The Beast. There are only two characters in this book in the form of our Beauty/Persephone Nyx and her Beast/Hades Ignefix. Both of them are not very good people. At all. Nyx is spiteful and hurtful full of anger and hate towards the people who she loves, though she is shown to have good reason. Ignefix is a monster and proud of it, while also being slightly afraid of it, seeing himself as right and everyone else as wrong. Nyx did strike me as annoying and dislikeable at first, but she grew on me and I liked how she came to except the darkness inside of her. Ignefix was by far the most entertaining and interesting character in this book, to the point where I would skim over sections of the book so I could see if he was coming back in later part.
Overall, the world building is clunky and incoherent, but it has lot to offer; I'd say it was trying to pour too much into too short of a story. The main character I think are the most interesting aspects of the book and they have a very love blossoming out of hate romance, which is perfect for people fans of Hades and Persephone or Beauty and The Beast Retellings.
Except this story was a lie, it was just a trick of the opening chapters to lure you in.
Cruel Beauty started off so well and then absolutely dropped the ball with an irritating love triangle and an even more unbelievable and hateful romance between a girl and the demon she was sold to by way of a terrible bargain struck between the demon and her (utterly useless) father. Why do authors think that this is a good angle? Does anyone want to read about a girl falling in love with someone trapping in his creepy castle?
I'll start with what I did like, initially anyway. Nyx has been sworn to marry Ignifex, a demon known as The Gentle Lord who makes clever bargains with desperate people. He's the ruler of Arcadia and Nyx has been given the task, by her people, of using the marriage as a way to kill him. Whatever the cost. She's allegedly been training all her life to learn how to do this, although it appears she still hasn't the faintest idea aside from squirrelling a dagger in her pocket.
Nyx is a hateful character, but that makes her really fun to read about. She is angry at the world, angry at her family for trading her like cattle, angry at her sister for not being the unlucky one to be traded and, most of all, angry at the demon holding her hostage in his pretty castle. Rightly so. At one point during her capture she actually surprised me with her complete disregard for Ignifex and malice towards him; how refreshing to see a protagonist who isn't just accepting of her fate, who fights back and who doesn't care if her captor is torn apart by shadows in the darkness.
That's where my enjoyment stopped, because Nyx never once attempts to stab him with her squirreled dagger after the opening scene with him and swiftly finds herself in a love triangle with Ignifex and his shadow servant/slave, kissing them both whenever they're remotely in her line of sight. Which makes perfect sense really, because whilst the story is supposed to hinge upon Nyx having trained her whole life to kill the demon and save her people, in actuality her training consisted of learning how to please him and she seemingly has no desire to save anyone but him. Useful...
I was so utterly disappointed to not see any of that "training". I thought this might be a tactical book filled with various tricks Nyx had up her sleeve to fight the demon. Instead it's a soft romance, attempting to seem otherwise by claiming that both Nyx and Ignifex are corrupt people who like to insult each other, and that I assume makes them interesting. The resolution of the love triangle, which I won't spoil, was also ridiculous.
It's such a shame, because I can really see myself being lost in a monstrous world like this and I really enjoyed the writing style. But I can't see myself stomaching another instant romance between a girl who claims to have vengeance in her blood, but who actually just wants to kiss everyone and disregard the mission.
Is now a good time to mention this guy murdered her mum too? I just don't understand her.
In much the same say that I appreciated what the author was trying to do with the romance but just didn't think she hit the mark, I admired the fact that she'd thrown so many different and unusual elements into the story, but again, didn't think they quite worked. Off the top of my head, the inspirations and thematic elements included: the beauty and the beast story, greek and roman mythology, ancient britain, celtic folklore, alchemy, and ideas around parallel universes and worlds in worlds. Phew! I loved basically all the elements on that list, but throwing them all into the mix meant none of them were given proper development, and the whole thing became very confusing.
I also really struggled with the plot and pacing. The opening was exciting, and for a little while, I thought it was going to live up to my expectations. But then the vast majority of the book dragged, with a few scenes of romance, danger or revelations held together by scene after scene in which almost nothing happened. There were lots of weirdly arty scenes of the heroine exploring the "beasts" house by herself. A few would have added flavour, but the quantity of them just distracted from the plot. And then towards the end, the rather complicated finale was hugely rushed.
Overall, I feel bad giving this such a low score, as the author clearly tried to do something interesting rather than churn out something formulaic and dull, but ultimately, I found it very hard going.
I devoured this book in the span of mere hours. And I absolutely loved the book.
Much like the original fairytale, Nyx is taken to the “beast”, where she’s immediately confused by the massive house, that seems to have magical abilities in itself. As she tries her best to fight against her (super hot) husband, Ignifix, she befriends his shadow—a servant who somehow looks exactly like Ignifix.
I was a bit confused by the Greek Mythology that seemed pretty random, but probably served a purpose that I just couldn’t understand. The fact that something I already knew was mixed with something entirely new to me—it threw me off my game a few times. I always feel like that when pieces of the “real world” is incorporated into a fantasy world.
But it didn’t extract from the book. I still loved every word, sentence, paragraph and page.
As I read, I noticed a few things:
- Her family is seriously messed up. I mean, her dad bargained for her two daughters to be born healthy, and then sends one of them to this creature he hates, all while he canoodles with his deceased wife’s sister? That’s messed up, dude.
- I don’t care, I call dibs on Ignifix and Shadow.
- I loved the characters in general. The backstory of the “curse” and even the solution at the end.
By now, I am probably relatively close to become a major fairytale-retelling fangirl, and I really enjoyed this one. It was familiar, but still very surprising.
Would Recommend to: People who like “Beauty And The Beast” and people who enjoy retellings in general.