A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer

40197454._SY475_Fall in love, break the curse.

It once seemed so easy to Prince Rhen, the heir to Emberfall. Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year over and over, he knew he could be saved if a girl fell for him. But that was before he learned that at the end of each autumn, he would turn into a vicious beast hell-bent on destruction. That was before he destroyed his castle, his family, and every last shred of hope.

Nothing has ever been easy for Harper. With her father long gone, her mother dying, and her brother barely holding their family together while constantly underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy, she learned to be tough enough to survive. But when she tries to save someone else on the streets of Washington, DC, she’s instead somehow sucked into Rhen’s cursed world.
– Read the rest of the summary on Goodreads

I wasn’t head over heels with this book, but it was a great read to get me back into the reading spirit. It’s no secret that I LOVE young adult fantasy — and this one definitely fit the bill for an enjoyable fantasy read.

Reminiscent of a Beauty & the Beast retelling, I enjoyed (most of) the characters (most of the time). Harper is a strong female lead; she’s opinionated, determined and tough. Harper has cerebral palsy, but it doesn’t become the primary focal point of the story — yes, she has it. Yes, it limits her. But she also pushes through those limits and does not let it define her. Rhen is an alright male lead, despite being your stereotypical YA fantasy prince — arrogant on the surface, but sooo much more. I didn’t like him. I liked Gray, his guard, much better. Harper had depth to her character, but I didn’t really see that with Rhen.

The pace of the story seemed slow at times, but utterly fast at others. That being said, I had a difficult time putting it down and wanted to finish it quickly.

I liked the ‘modern’ world crossover with the fantasy world. The worldbuilding was great, and I had an easy time imagining what Emberfall looked like.

Overall, the book was very well-written and an enjoyable read. I rated it 3.5/5 on Goodreads.

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