“The Little Mermaid” takes a twisted turn in this thrilling sequel to villainess origin story Sea Witch, as the forces of land and sea clash in an epic battle for freedom, redemption, and true love. Runa will not let her twin sister die. Alia traded her voice to the Sea Witch for a shot at happiness with a prince who doesn’t love her. And his rejection will literally kill her—unless Runa intervenes.
Under the sea, Evie craves her own freedom—but liberation from her role as Sea Witch will require an exchange she may not be willing to make. With their hearts’ desires at odds, what will Runa and Evie be willing to sacrifice to save their worlds?
Told from alternating perspectives, this epic fairy tale retelling is a romantic and heart-wrenching story about the complications of sisterhood, the uncompromising nature of magic, and the cost of redemption.
Should You read Sea Witch Rising?
Sea Witch Rising is the sequel to Sea Witch by Sarah Henning, which tells the story of Ursula or the sea witch(from Little Mermaid). I loved Evie, the protagonist of Sea Witch and when her story came to an end, I was heartbroken but satisfied with the story. When the sequel to Sea Witch was announced, I was curious and this is what I thought.
In this sequel, we look beyond the story of the Sea Witch; we are introduced to a new protagonist, a mermaid named Runa and her father, the Sea King and other characters from the sea and the land. There is more action in this book than its predecessor and we get a better glimpse of Evie life after being bound to her lair as a sea witch. Set against the backdrop of the second world war(I assume), there are higher stakes at play as both Runa and Evie try to save people both above and below land.
Overall, I would recommend this book to you if you read and liked Sea Witch.
About the Author:
Sarah Henning is a recovering journalist who has worked for the Palm Beach Post, Kansas City Star and Associated Press, among others. While in South Florida, Sarah lived and worked through five hurricanes, which gave her an extreme respect for the ocean. When not writing, she runs ultramarathons, hits the playground with her two kids and hangs out with her husband Justin, who doubles as her longsuffering IT department. Sarah lives in Lawrence, Kansas, which, despite being extremely far from the beach, happens to be pretty cool.
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 Lacy. 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.
Break the curse, save the kingdom.
A prince? A monster? A curse? Harper doesn’t know where she is or what to believe. But as she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land, she begins to understand what’s at stake. And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm, his hope comes flooding back. But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall . . . and it will take more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin.
Should You read A Curse so Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer?
I am always surprised to discover that when the world seems darkest, there exists the greatest opportunity for light.
― Brigid Kemmerer, A Curse So Dark and Lonely
Retellings are such a popular genre in the bookish industry right now that if you love reading them, you will be spoilt for choice. I love retellings because I see badass, unsure but still fierce(badass) heroines as the protagonists, even better if they’re a person of color and/or a neurodiverse rep or an LGBTQ+ rep..In A Curse so dark and Lonely, I saw a badass heroine named Harper Lacy, who has cerebral palsy and she OWNS the show..well, the story.
This book is described as a modern Beauty and Beast retelling minus the awesome library. WHY ? *cries* I wanted another fantasy library to dream about. Anyway…Harper and Prince Rhen are the protagonists and the story is told from both of their POVs. This is my first Brigid Kemmerer novel and I was amazed by the way she took “a tale as old as time” that portrays an abusive relationship and turned it into something beautiful..something I’d like everyone to read and re-read.
The story starts in Emberfall. Prince Rhen is wiping blood from his hands and there’s his Guard Commander Grey who is apparently Commander only by name as there’re no men to command anymore. Rhen also asks his Grey of the whereabouts of a girl and he replies that she’s gone. Gone where? Apparently it doesn’t matter to either of them as Grey sets off to find another girl for Rhen..This is not the only thing that creepy here in Emberfall. Rhen remarks that he doesn’t care about what kind of girl begins or how much blood is shed as this season will repeat itself again and thus, he will be eighteen for the three hundred twenty-seventh time.
Then, we’ll move on to Washington DC where we see Harper acting as the look out while her brother’s out on a dangerous job. Harper catches Grey carrying a girl and Harper attacks him which ultimately leads her(and Grey) to Emberfall.
In Emberfall, Harper is horrified to discover that she isn’t in DC anymore and Rhen expresses his “regrets” and tells her that he can’t let her until after the season is over. When Harper manages to escape from the castle, she discovers the plight of Emberfall. A kingdom where a curse has managed to wreak havoc on the people and Harper is Rhen’s and Emberfall’s only hope to save it.
“This early in the season, the other girls would sit by the hearth and gaze at me over crystal goblets, while I’d pour wine and tell stories with just enough devilishness to make them blush. If I put a crystal goblet in this one’s hand, she’d likely smash it and use the shards to cut me.”
You’d think that since it’s a Beast retelling, you’ll only see the Beast as the villain but you’d be so wrong. As I’ve said before, Harper is almost everything I love to see in a female protagonist. She has cerebral palsy but she doesn’t let anyone see her as uncapable and weak, instead she educates the people and Rhen on celebral palsy. However she isn’t a character without flaws and neither is Rhen or Grey.
Rhen was a spoiled prince before the curse but for hundred years, he suffered abuse for the sake of his people. I loved that he didn’t make a big deal out of Harper’s physical restrictions and acknowledged his mistake in underestimating her strengths. Grey is loyal to Rhen and even it breaks him, he will continue to stand by Rhen because he has vowed to do so.
I loved the pacing of the book and the flawed characters. It was incredible to see such relatable mental health representation. I loved the friendship between Harper and Grey and Rhen. I loved the slow-burn romance between Rhen and Harper. It was not the focus of the story and there were other stakes like saving Emberfall and Rhen from the curse and foreign invaders, protecting the people from the Beast, and saving Harper’s family. The ending was perfect which leads me to confess that I’m now addicted to Brigid Kemmerer’s writing and eagerly waiting for the sequel to this fantasy and her upcoming titles.
Overall, I highly recommend this book if you’re a Brigid Kemmerer fan, love retellings, strong but flawed characters, neurodiverse rep, beautiful friendship, and slow-burn romance.
Thanks to the publisher for providing me an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Do you think you’ll read A Curse so Dark and Lonely? Have you already read it? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!
REVIEW | WHY SHOULD YOU READ THE ROSE & THE DAGGER?
“It was because they were two parts of a whole. He did not belong to her. And she did not belong to him. It was never about belonging to someone. It was about belonging together.”
Before reading this review, I am supposed to say “SPOILER ALERT“. If you haven’t read The Wrath & The Dawn – the first book in the duology- then don’t proceed or you may,totally your choice.
I didn’t LOVE The Wrath & the Dawn but I was eager enough to pick up the second book of this duology and after posting two pictures of the book on Instagram, I promptly forgot about it. *I read this book in January*
The Rose & the Dagger starts off where its predecessor ended: the city of Rey was burning , thus leaving Rey and its ruler vulnerable. We also saw that Jalal sent Shahrzad away with Tariq to keep her safe and ……….. I don’t remember anything else.
Anyway, so we see Khalid rebuilding his destroyed kingdom and trying not to think of his wife. On the other side, Shahrzad’s the same but now she is among people who want to kill her beloved.
Jahandar, Shahrzad’s father is still obsessed with the BOOK and Tariq is more frustrating than ever. Like…TAKE A HINT , Tariq! Shahrzad is HAPPILY married..of course,he doesn’t take a hint and continues to make not only Shahrzad but me uncomfortable.
Moving on…we see Khalid’s “uncle,” the Sultan of Parthia making a comeback as THE VILLIAN who wants to overthrow “boy king” Khalid and rule the entire kingdom.
Looks like Khalid has got his work cut out for him or does he ? For there is Shahrzad, who will stop at anything to protect Khalid and save Rey from destruction.
Why should you read this book? Obviously, you should, if you read The Wrath and loved/liked it. Besides that reason,I think The Rose had more action scenes (which I loved), especially the use of magic was more prevalent in this book. There were lots of twists and turns and shocks-oh my! So, yes I’d say these are all valid reasons to buy or borrow yourself a copy of this.
Overall, this was a worthy sequel filled with magic, curses, broody boy kings, a jealous ex-boyfriend, power-hungry father, and uncles and it is written by an Asian author.
I want to thank my bank account which generously donated me -MY- money to buy this book.
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Publication Date(US): 26 April 2016
Hardcover: 416 Pages
Have you read The Wrath and the Dawn books? Did you like it? Love it? Hate it? Let me know all your thoughts about it? This is also my first review for the Year of The Asian Challenge 2019 so give this post some love, post some comments and if you love MY thoughts, click the follow button above.
Synopsis:An addictively suspenseful new novel set in the glamorous world of the New York Hamptons, about secrets that refuse to remain buried and consequences that cannot be escaped.
After a whirlwind romance, a young woman returns to the opulent, secluded mansion of her new fiancé Max Winter – a wealthy senator and recent widower – and a life of luxury she’s never known. But all is not as it appears at the Asherley estate. The house is steeped in the memory of Max’s beautiful first wife Rebekah, who haunts the young woman’s imagination and feeds her uncertainties, while his very alive teenage daughter Dani makes her life a living hell.
As the soon-to-be second Mrs. Winter grows more in love with Max, and more afraid of Dani, she is drawn deeper into the family’s dark secrets – the kind of secrets that could kill her, too.
Synopsis:Hercule Poirot returns home after an agreeable luncheon to find an angry woman waiting to berate him outside his front door. Her name is Sylvia Rule, and she demands to know why Poirot has accused her of the murder of Barnabas Pandy, a man she has neither heard of nor ever met. She is furious to be so accused and deeply shocked. Poirot is equally shocked, because he too has never heard of any Barnabas Pandy, and he certainly did not send the letter in question. He cannot convince Sylvia Rule of his innocence, however, and she marches away in a rage.
Shaken, Poirot goes inside, only to find that he has a visitor waiting for him — a man called John McCrodden who also claims also to have received a letter from Poirot that morning, accusing him of the murder of Barnabas Pandy…
Poirot wonders how many more letters of this sort have been sent in his name. Who sent them, and why? More importantly, who is Barnabas Pandy, is he dead, and, if so, was he murdered? And can Poirot find out the answers without putting more lives in danger?