Published by Dial (8.16.2012)
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Format: eARC, 385 pages
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A darkly compelling mix of romance, fairy tale, and suspense from a new voice in teen fiction
The trees swallowed her brother whole, and Jenny was there to see it. Now seventeen, she revisits the woods where Tom was taken, resolving to say good-bye at last. Instead, she's lured into the trees, where she finds strange and dangerous creatures who seem to consider her the threat. Among them is Jack, mercurial and magnetic, with secrets of his own. Determined to find her brother, with or without Jack's help, Jenny struggles to navigate a faerie world where stunning beauty masks some of the most treacherous evils, and she's faced with a choice between salvation or sacrifice--and not just her own.
Aside from the Fever series by Karen Marie Moning and Iron Fey by Julie Kagawa, this is one of the top books I’ve read about fae! I didn’t love it necessarily, but I really really liked it! And to be honest, I didn’t expect to enjoy it half as much as I actually did. I’m kinda picky about faerie stories, and let’s face it, there’s a lot of mediocre stories about fae. But The Treachery of Beautiful Things was enchanting and magical and I flew through it in a matter of hours! The title of this book couldn’t be any more perfect for a book about fae – treacherous, beautiful fae.
There was definitely no lack of danger or action in this one, which is mostly why I enjoyed it so much. From the very beginning right up until the end, it is packed with action scenes that will keep you on the edge of your proverbial seat.
The world building was fantastic. So full of magic! There were tons of creatures I already knew (including Puck!) and a few that I hadn’t heard before, like Foletti’s, Kobolds, and Leczis. Long brought them all to life with her beautiful imagery. I liked the twist on Titania and Mab, and the meaning of a jack-in-the-box. Very interesting!
Jenny was a great lead. While she wasn’t outright kick-ass, she was still strong. She had one bad thing happen after another and still managed to hold her shit together. I would surely have been curled up into the fetal position after only half of what she went through. I definitely admired her resilience and her courage! She shouldered it all without much complaint and no sniveling (because who likes that in a lead?). She only irritated me once – when she basically pulled a 5-year-old stunt, all but sticking her fingers in her ears and saying lalalalalalalaaaaIcan’thearyoulalalalallaaaa. I was quite disappointed in her at that point – and frankly wanted to slap the crap out of her – but thankfully that moment was short lived.
Jack…ohhh, Jack! I loved him from the second I found out he had heterochromia (I’m a sucker for that). One blue eye and one green eye?? Yes, please!! So awesome. He was kinda hard to figure out at first, because you don’t know exactly what side he was on or what his motive really was. But I found myself getting attached to him right along with Jenny. And the twist of his identity? Sooo didn’t figure that out.
The ending…ehrmagerd. I admit that I got a little misty there towards the end. And I must say I totally adore Jack!! *sigh*
Love fae stories? Or maybe you’re not a big fan because you haven’t found the right one? Pick this one up. It’s worth it, I promise.
A lifelong fan of fantasy, romance, and ancient mysteries, Ruth Frances Long studied English Literature, History of Religions, and Celtic Civilization in college and now works in a specialized library of rare and unusual books. She lives in County Wicklow, Ireland. The Treachery of Beautiful Things is her first novel for teens.