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  • The Cruel Prince

  • The Folk of the Air, Book 1
  • By: Holly Black
  • Narrated by: Caitlin Kelly
  • Length: 12 hrs and 36 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (932 ratings)

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The Cruel Prince cover art

The Cruel Prince

By: Holly Black
Narrated by: Caitlin Kelly
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Publisher's Summary

The start of a thrilling new fantasy series from best-selling author Holly Black about a mortal girl who finds herself caught in a dangerous web of royal faerie intrigue.

Of course I want to be like them. They're beautiful as blades forged in some divine fire. They will live forever. And Cardan is even more beautiful than the rest. I hate him more than all the others. I hate him so much that sometimes when I look at him, I can hardly breathe.

One terrible morning, Jude and her sisters see their parents murdered in front of them. The terrifying assassin abducts all three girls to the world of Faerie, where Jude is installed in the royal court but mocked and tormented by the Faerie royalty for being mortal. As Jude grows older, she realises that she will need to take part in the dangerous deceptions of the fey to ever truly belong. But the stairway to power is fraught with shadows and betrayal. And looming over all is the infuriating, arrogant and charismatic Prince Cardan.

Dramatic and thrilling fantasy blends seamlessly with enthralling storytelling to create a fully realised and seductive world, brim-full of magic and romance.

©2018 Holly Black (P)2018 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd

What listeners say about The Cruel Prince

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    585
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  • 3 Stars
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  • 3 Stars
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  • 2 Stars
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The BEST book I have read in a long time

I’ll start by saying that if you’re looking for a lighthearted, happy story, then this book is not for you. This book is dark. It is dark and not particularly happy. That being said, I cannot love it enough. I was absolutely hooked from the first chapter and devoured the whole book in two days. I don’t want to give away any spoilers but what I will say is that the story is fast paced, with so many twists and turns in the plot that every time you think you know where the storyline is heading, something throws it into a whole new direction. The characters are brilliantly flawed and the descriptions are so beautifully done I could see every detail in my minds eye. I LOVED this story so much and I simply can not recommend it enough. I have not found a series I have loved this much since Harry Potter. If you have not already read The Cruel Prince do yourself a favor and pick it up ASAP! You can thank me later.

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6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

good

was good but the music annoyed me during the prologue and epilog and at the beginning of book 2

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6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

I tried...

I really wanted to like this book, and gave it a good six chapters. Unfortunately, the writing is just average and I couldn't stomach it anymore.

You lost me at the beastiality aspect, the way that Jude talks directly to the reader, the simplicity of the dialogue, the shallow descriptions, and Jude just accepting that people close to her are killed.

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4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

great

i really enjoyed this book. It was faced paced and kept me on my totes. Downside I wanted more character development and romance.

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4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

More teen than young adult

Definitely a story aimed at younger listeners - it was disappointing and lacked much depth in terms of its characters and its descriptions. The narration maintained the same time whether it was a chill conversation or an attack on someone…made it very unexciting. It wasn’t bad, but IMO definitely not great either. If you want a relaxed story just to listen to in the background maybe this is a good option for you but I wouldn’t recommend it, especially not after reading exciting fantasy books such as a court of roses and thorns etc.

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3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Not worth the hype

After hearing so many good things about this book on booktok I eagerly delved into it.
However it was clear after a few chapters that this wasn’t what I was expecting at all. I persevered to the end in hopes it would improve but once finished, all I was left with was disappointment.
I definitely do not understand all the hype.

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Patience is rewarded

I can see by the sheer number of reviews and fans that I don't need to really spend much time talking about the book and its strengths. Clearly this author/series is already well known.

But I will address something that I feel needs to be. I see a lot of reviews from people (mostly men) who bowed out in the earlier chapters. Maybe you're wondering if you're going to be one of those people? The covers of this series would be immediately recognisable to the YA market as being a YA series. But for fantasy readers coming at it cold it is easy to make that mistake. I did. My first clue was when the narration started and it was in first person.

Hello YA!

If you don't have the patience, chances are you'll want to bow out around chapter ten. Up until then it's a fairly standard (albeit interesting) fantasy YA with conventional happenings. But... midway through the book the layers start to become apparent, and the twists, and the genre-busting. And you look back on those past ten chapters and the actions and go 'ohhh!'. And then it gets fun. Kind of crunchy.

I mean it's still YA which means it's still not going to be everyone's cup of cassava but the early bailers will have the wrong idea about the book and the series and will have swum off before getting hooked.

I'm happy I didn't. I'm looking forward to the next instalment.

TRIGGER ALERT: This version of the Fae world has a range of characters in it and many of them are violent and unpleasant. I can see from reviews that not everyone likes that but (in my head) the fae are the missing evolutionary step between humans and super predators and so I really have no problem with it at all. But, as a result, there are many scenes of VIOLENCE, SELF-HARM and general SWORD SLASHERY and BLOOD SPATTER. Just be aware.

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

decent

Jude is annoying - she doesn't know what she wants. Overall a decent story, but not as good as everyone raves about it

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Different

Enjoyable listen Creative plot interesting. If it’s a series I cover it. Where to from here now

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Really good story, easy to fall in love with!

I have been in a book slump since fourth wing and iron flame. Whilst I have listened to a few since I have struggled to get into them. This story had me though from the very start!

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