Published by HarperCollins on March 8th 2016
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Romance, Fairy Tales & Folklore
Wendy Higgins, the author of the New York Times bestselling Sweet Evil series, reimagines a classic Brothers Grimm fairy tale with The Great Hunt, a dramatic, romance-filled fantasy with rugged hunters, romantic tension, and a princess willing to risk all to save her kingdom.
When a monstrous beast attacks in Eurona, desperate measures must be taken. The king sends a proclamation to the best and bravest hunters: whoever kills the creature will win the hand of his daughter Princess Aerity as a reward. The princess recognizes her duty but cannot bear the idea of marrying a stranger—she was meant to marry for love—until a brooding local hunter, Paxton Seabolt, catches her attention. And while there’s no denying the fiery chemistry between them, Princess Aerity feels that Paxton’s mysteriousness is foreboding, maybe even dangerous.
Paxton is not the marrying type. Nor does he care much for spoiled royals and their arcane laws. He is determined to keep his focus on the task at hand—ridding the kingdom of the beast—but the princess continues to surprise him, and the secrets he’s buried begin to surface against his wishes.
I don’t like being disappointed. Because I got this book in hardcover, because of the pretty cover. My beautiful cover obsession has come to finally bite me in the ass. I guess it was bound to happen soon, since it’d been a while.
All in all, I can probably round it up to 3 main things that disappointed me in this book.
Promising main character is actually super bland
The sketchy solution the king finds to get people to hunt the great beast that stalks the lands is to offer his daughter’s hand in marriage. Over a hundred men show up the next week. Aerity is sad she won’t get to pick her own husband, marry out of love, boo hoo, but she quickly puts her big girl pants on and gets over it. She puts the safety of her kingdom first, and yes, it’s not like the idea thrills her, but she’s willing to do whatever it’s necessary. That right there was pretty awesome. I was ready to see her do more awesome things.
All I got was her (okay, yes, it’s cool) silk skills, her ability to look good in dresses, and some attempt at being brave in the end. I mean, what?
In all the ‘action’ sequences, she’s somewhere else. Of course, obviously, she’s not the one who is supposed to be hunting the beast. But I think this book would have been a thousand times better if she had snuck into the hunt somehow, and I don’t know, won her own hand? Yes, kind of Merida-ish, but wouldn’t that have been completely BADASS?!
Romance is non-existent
Kill the beast, win the girl
Umm, passive female protagonist aside, this was a great tagline! Lots of promise in the romance department! But then, this book tries to pass a few heated stares and short ‘conversations’ as love?
Literally, almost half the book the only interaction Aerity and Paxton get is just undressing each other through stares. And yes, I think lust is a pretty fun part of romance, but hey, if you’re going to sell this as having romance, then you can’t seriously expect me to believe this really weak attempt at it.
The action wasn’t fullfilling
If all else fails, you would think that at least the action would be all badass and action-y. But it was… not. There are some parts, incredibly juicy parts in which our characters in the hunt hear the screams of the ones the beast gets, and then they actually see the beast, and it all builds up, and that’s awesome, but it definitely could’ve been better!
I won’t be spoiling the end, but it was very underwhelming.
The book isn’t without its strong points but in this case, I’m afraid the disappointments override those good things :/
You should read The Great Hunt if
- You’re up for stories in which people who do magic are shunned
- You like broody love interests
- Well, shit, this is hard when I didn’t really like the book!