- Hardcover: 384 pages
- Publisher: EgmontUSA (January 27, 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1606845918
- ISBN-13: 978-1606845912
- Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1.3 x 8.6 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 40 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,609,076 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Tear You Apart Hardcover – January 27, 2015
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From School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up—An otherworldly spin on the "Snow White" fairy tale and a companion novel to Kill Me Softly (Egmont USA, 2012). Seventeen-year-old Viv Deneuve is the Snow White figure in this tale. A dark-haired beauty with blood red lips, Viv is a sitting duck. If her jealous stepmother doesn't poison her first, then her cursed boyfriend Henley is charged with hunting Viv down and cutting out her heart. Her only chance of survival is to stay as far away from Henley as possible, but that's hard to do when she is desperately in love with him. When Viv is invited to an underworld club by the same prince who is supposed to break her curse, she wonders if she can leave Henley and her heart behind. But Prince Jasper isn't Prince Charming. And once Viv enters the underworld, Jasper's father isn't going to let her go home. The protagonist decides to take her fate into her own hands. Cross deftly takes the all-too-familiar Disney fairy tale tropes (fair maiden, handsome prince) and turns them on their heads. These tales are dark and sinister (Viv worries her prince has a dead girl fetish) and filled with a diverse cast of characters. At first, the protagonist isn't all that likable. She's abrasive and bitter and almost resigned to her fate. But once she sets her sights on freedom and justice, she becomes a more powerful heroine. A great read for fans of the television show, Once Upon A Time.—Kimberly Garnick Giarratano, Rockaway Township Public Library, NJ
"Set in the same fairy-tale world as Kill Me Softly (2012), this offers a Snow White story with a twist. Viv is cursed by her stepmother to be killed before she can be awakened by her prince. Viv, meanwhile, is in love with Henley, but their romance is ill-fated as Henley is a huntsman―in theory, the one who will kill Viv. When Viv discovers a possible loophole in the curse that would take her to the underworld and to meet her prince before her destined time, she wonders if she should take it. Life there is bleak and ruled by an evil king, and it will be up to Viv to defeat him while trying to save herself and change her fate. Twisting together the tales of Snow White and Rumpelstiltskin―with a dash of Romeo and Juliet and Hades and Persephone―this fantastical mash-up is full of angst, star-crossed romance, and magic. There's plenty of high-stakes drama to keep readers engaged, and fans of the first book are sure to be happy to return to the strange and magical world of Beau Rivage." ―Booklist(Journal)
"This sequel to Kill Me Softly (2012) continues the adventures of the teen inhabitants of Beau Rivage, a town where fairy tales live again. Viv has the Snow White curse. Her stepmother, Regina, clearly wants her dead, and Viv already knows the Huntsman fated to cut out her heart. The trouble is, she and that Huntsman, Henley, have been in love for years. As Viv realizes that the time of the curse is fast approaching, their relationship becomes strained. Viv hopes that Henley won't kill her, but she can't be sure. When Regina hires another Huntsman to make sure Viv dies, Viv decides to escape into the underworld. There, she meets the prince who is supposed to save her and marry her to live happily ever after―and she doesn't like him at all. His father, the king of the underworld, turns out to be an extremely nasty sort indeed, one who will make Viv's happily-ever-after life into unending torture. Viv still loves Henley, but she's trapped in the underworld, and Henley can't get to her. Meanwhile, other fairy tales play themselves out all around Viv. Can Viv find a way to thwart her curse? As before, Cross keeps readers guessing as she unfolds her mashup, bringing the German Märchen versions into the story with satisfyingly gruesome effect. A fan-pleasing combination of fairy tale and thriller." ―Kirkus Reviews(Journal)
"An otherworldly spin on the 'Snow White' fairy tale and a companion novel to Kill Me Softly (Egmont USA, 2012). Seventeen-year-old Viv Deneuve is the Snow White figure in this tale. A dark-haired beauty with blood red lips, Viv is a sitting duck. If her jealous stepmother doesn't poison her first, then her cursed boyfriend Henley is charged with hunting Viv down and cutting out her heart. Her only chance of survival is to stay as far away from Henley as possible, but that's hard to do when she is desperately in love with him. When Viv is invited to an underworld club by the same prince who is supposed to break her curse, she wonders if she can leave Henley and her heart behind. But Prince Jasper isn't Prince Charming. And once Viv enters the underworld, Jasper's father isn't going to let her go home. The protagonist decides to take her fate into her own hands. Cross deftly takes the all-too-familiar Disney fairy tale tropes (fair maiden, handsome prince) and turns them on their heads. These tales are dark and sinister (Viv worries her prince has a dead girl fetish) and filled with a diverse cast of characters. At first, the protagonist isn't all that likable. She's abrasive and bitter and almost resigned to her fate. But once she sets her sights on freedom and justice, she becomes a more powerful heroine. A great read for fans of the television show, Once Upon A Time." ―School Library Journal(Journal)
"Readers who like fairytales will love the way Sarah Cross has taken Sleeping Beauty and stepped it up a few notches. Students should read Kill Me Softly (Egmont USA, 2012) first as it would help set the stage. Viv is caught in a fairytale curse and has a love/hate relationship with Henley, her huntsman. Jasper is the prince she was meant for but his overbearing troll of a father makes her life unbearable. Viv's adventure to the underground leaves readers on the edge of their seats wanting more and hoping that she and Henley get together and stay together."―School Library Connection(Journal)
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Tear You Apart is fabulous, glamorous and magical but it's also dark, gritty and dangerous. You have princesses and princes, fabulous parties, fairies roaming around, magic in plain sight, and fairytales coming to life. However you also have the dark-side like you would see in the original fairytales. There are these curses that come to life and some people don't survive their curses, they actually die.
Tear You Apart is a Snow White retelling
The Main Characters:
Viv as Snow White
Viv bestfriend/boyfriend, Henley, as the Huntsman
Regina as the Evil Queen
Now characters from Kill Me Softly do make their rounds in this book and there is hints of what happened in the previous book in this one so I suggest reading Kill Me Softly first.
Viv is not what you would think Snow White would be like. She lives in modern times and she has know about the curse since she was little. Regina is plotting her death and would one day care out her plans and Henley may be forced to take her heart. So that means that Viv turned into a very cold/mean person. She isn't evil but she is harsh and at times you can see who she would have been and also how she still is, soft and caring at times.
Henley is a really nice guy and he really cares about Viv. Henley and Viv have such a strong bond however she treats him like crap because she believes in the curse, but he loves her so much that he sticks around. Since curses have the power to change people you can't help but wonder who side is he on.
Regina plays her role as the Evil Queen well, but she has this backstory. You find out that she wasn't always like this and I did find myself feeling a bit sorry for her.
I love when a story is beautiful and frightening. The descriptions of the scenes, parties and places are glamours and then you see the dark side of this tale and it just makes it better. Tear You Apart had me on the edge of my seat, so many different things was happening, trying to figure out if Viv would survive the murder attempts, trying to solve the mysteries and which fairytales where which.
I love this series so much and I really wish that it will continue on.
If you can't get beyond characters being petty and immature most of the time, you might want to skip this.
I think it was worth it, because despite my frustrations with the characters, the scenes the author paints are gorgeous, and her reimagining of fairy tales is ingenious. But if that's the sort of thing that drives you nuttier than all of Snow White's pet squirrels, well, fair warning.
THE SWEET: Sarah Cross is an incredible world-builder. Ever since I read her first book set in the fairy-tale town of Beau Rivage, where residents are Cursed to play out certain roles from fairy tales, I was riveted by both the premise and her execution of it. She does an amazing job of capturing the magic and glamour of these stories, while not losing sight of the underlying darkness in many of the original versions of the fairy tales. Not everyone gets a happy ending. Not everything works out. But the curses don't always win either. Cross does a nice job of keeping you guessing.
I also love how she tied in characters from her short stories--Dusty and her prince have a cameo, the Twin Roses cafe is mentioned, and the Twelve Dancing Princesses certainly have a role (though I would have loved to have seen a bit of Mazurka--I missed her sass).
I really just can't overstate how much I love Beau Rivage, and all the incredibly well-thought-out fairy tale details at work here. Also, I loved how Sarah put a twist on the tale by mashing 3 fairy tales together. I won't say which, as it would spoil it, but I loved the way it was just layer upon layer of story.
THE SOUR: As far as the leading characters this time around, I can't say that I was quite as enamored. I was a bit skeptical going in, knowing that this story was going to be about Vivian and Henley, or Snow White and her Huntsman. In the first book, KILL ME SOFTLY, they had been background characters, notable primarily for their exceedingly screwed up relationship. They had initially come off as high-strung, destructive, and a bit irritating. However, it could never be said that their relationship wasn't *interesting*--I certainly was curious to know how they'd come to be the way they were, so I read this book to solve that mystery.
As characters, I didn't mind so much that Viv and Henley had started out as selfish people. Every character has to grow, and I was willing to give it time. What bothered me was that, despite all the plot that occurred, there wasn't much growth, and when it happened, it seemed to come out of nowhere. *Everyone* is *so* selfish. Henley says he loves Viv, and obviously he thinks he could never kill her, but he really considers the possibility that it might be fair to murder her, essentially for having the gall to choose someone else. I will give it to Henley that he is forever shoving that away and acts selflessly enough later on to (more than) make up for it. He is probably the least selfish of the bunch, or grows the fastest. But we spend so little time really getting to know him that he comes across as a bit of a cardboard cut-out.
And Viv is almost unbearably self-centered, right up until nearly the end. Near the end of the book, she is still telling Henley that, "I don’t want you to be happy if it means you’re happy with someone else.” They are having a discussion wherein the options are that he ends up with someone else OR DIES. I mean, that is just an extremely selfish view to take on someone that you supposedly love. By the end, Viv does change her tune. She recognizes that she wants him to be happy, even as she hates the idea of him being happy without her, so...I'll give her that? But it's a very long, frustrating journey. She's claiming that she loves him for most of the book, but very rarely do her words and actions seem to reflect that, even after she's supposedly learned from her previous mistakes.
Jasper--he was selfish. Oh, so selfish. Of course, since he ends up as what I would call a minor villain, or at least an obstacle, disliking him hugely is not a problem. He comes across, initially, as a good guy--someone who Viv might not love yet, but who is willing to protect her. She rushes into things (understandably, really, as it's her best plan to stay alive), only to find that her Prince Charming's "charm" is a shiny veneer covering the truth that he really just cares about himself (and his sister, to be fair). He thinks that, as her prince who is fated to save Viv, he has earned her. Viv...is not all about that, to which I say, go girl! And I will admit that their relationship was far more toxic. At least Viv and Henley do care for each other deeply, which balances out some of their selfish tendencies. Both Jasper and Viv see each other as more of a means to an end. Given how many people Viv has hurt and used, I can't say that she seems *a lot* better. Really, Jasper and Viv are two sides of the same coin--they live most of their lives in fear, going with the Curses' flow, using people when it's convenient. Viv gains some guts once she gets to the Underworld, though. The worst things Jasper does--slapping Viv, and tricking her into thinking that Henley is dead--sway the balance so that Viv is a bit better in the end. But not by so much.
My main issues, ultimately, are that the heroes--while better than the King of the Underworld (a pretty low bar to set)--are not really better than the minor antagonist, and I don't feel like this is ever really called out or explored. I mean, Viv and Henley know that they treat each other badly, they apologize, but to me there wasn't really enough team work to make me excited about the pairing. We see their relationship at its dysfunctional finest, then they take some time away from each other, separately realize how much they love each other, and go through most of the plot separately. I never grew to love them as a couple, because we never spend much time with them, together, interacting in a not-fraught-with-anger-and-doom, healthy and positive way. I would say that Viv's coming to understand her stepmother progressed far better than the romance. Though I had my issues with it, I did appreciate how their relationship didn't wrap up nicely, and yet I felt like they'd come to a bit of understanding.
Mostly, this story seems to be about how people who love each other can also hate each other and try to kill each other, and it always seemed a very self-centered, gross kind of love to me, until the very end, which kind of felt rushed.
Additionally, the solving of the "riddle" really came out of nowhere for me. I feel like it would have been better if there had been a bit more hinting, so that in hindsight the reader could have that "aha!" moment. Although perhaps it was there, and I will notice it upon re-reading. I gobbled this story down like Hansel and Gretel on a gingerbread house, so I could have missed something. If anything, that speed is proof that, even as the characters aren't my favorite, I still love the writing and world-building.
I had one serious question--when Viv was trapped in the Underworld and didn't know what had happened to her friends, why didn't she just ask the 12 Dancing Princesses to find out for her? That seemed like an obvious solution, and it kind of bugged me that she never tried it.
The last thing that threw me off a bit were the references to the goings on of Book 1. They mention Felix, and worry about running into him, which seems like foreshadowing, but nothing ever comes of it. Perhaps it's a suggestion that we'll get another Beau Rivage story that will deal with that loose end--something certainly seems to be going on between Freddie and Layla, so I want to find out what's up with that!--but it kept me waiting on something that never came. Still, I guess it would have been weird if they didn't mention those events at all, so it's not a big detraction. This was meant to be Viv and Henley's story, not "Mira and Felix and Blue Part II", and I get that.
I love Beau Rivage, and I'd love to read more stories set there. Sarah Cross is a talented author, and even though I never fell in love with these protagonists like I want to, I hope she keeps writing in this world. I'm really dying to find out what happens to everyone else!
Good luck, and happy reading!
Most recent customer reviews
love triangle, fairytale town, princess not worth fighting or dying for, boyfriend huntsman, angsty whiney brats
While yes, the story was good, it felt like there was to much.Read more
Viv is an unlikable, whiny, insufferable, entitled and shallow heroine.Read more