Published by Feiwel & Friends on November 8th 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Love & Romance, Fantasy & Magic, Young Adult Fiction, Fairy Tales & Folklore, Adaptations, Fantasy, General, Romance
Buy on: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks
Long before she was the terror of Wonderland—the infamous Queen of Hearts—she was just a girl who wanted to fall in love.
Long before she was the terror of Wonderland, she was just a girl who wanted to fall in love. Catherine may be one of the most desired girls in Wonderland, and a favorite of the unmarried King of Hearts, but her interests lie elsewhere. A talented baker, all she wants is to open a shop with her best friend. But according to her mother, such a goal is unthinkable for the young woman who could be the next queen.
Then Cath meets Jest, the handsome and mysterious court joker. For the first time, she feels the pull of true attraction. At the risk of offending the king and infuriating her parents, she and Jest enter into an intense, secret courtship. Cath is determined to define her own destiny and fall in love on her terms. But in a land thriving with magic, madness, and monsters, fate has other plans.
In her first stand-alone teen novel, the New York Times-bestselling author dazzles us with a prequel to Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.
I’ve been waiting for Marissa Meyer’s new stand-alone novel, Heartless, ever since news of its release dropped. As a fan of her Lunar Chronicles series, I had really hit hopes for this novel, and I wasn’t disappointed. I received a copy of the book earlier this year when I attended the YallWest Book Convention in Santa Monica, California. It was just given to me, not for review, but I still sat on it because I knew I’d want to write one anyway. I’m glad I waited, because know I’ll be able to talk about it with other fans of Meyer’s.
Heartless is a prequel to Lewis Carroll’s classic story, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. In this story we meet Catherine who later becomes known to readers as the terrifying Queen of Hearts. But before she became a crazed monarch, Catherine was just a girl who wanted to fall in love, and live out her dream of becoming a world-renowned baker. Unfortunately, Catherine is a member of the gentry, and such a goal is unimaginable. Especially since she’s a favorite of the King of Hearts. I really liked Catherine as a character, and kept hoping the story would turn out different for her, even though I knew deep down it wouldn’t. She was such a caring girl, torn between her desires and what was expected of her. However, I didn’t like the way she treated the King. He was a nice guy, and I feel she did him wrong. However, I believe that aspect of her character was foreshadowing for who she was to become.
During the course of the story, Catherine meets Jest. Jest is the handsome, mysterious new court joker, and though Catherine knows there’s no future for them, she enters into a secret courtship with Jest. I loved this way the romance developed between Jest and Catherine. They seemed so perfect for each other that I couldn’t help but root for them. The entire time I read the book I hoped that it would end up being the first in a series, just so I could have more time with these two together before Catherine met her fate. Sadly, this is a standalone so that didn’t happen. However, I did enjoy seeing how this relationship factored into Catherine’s development as the Queen of Hearts.
Another aspect of the story I really enjoyed was the mystery of the Jabberwock. This added an element of mystery that allowed the book to be about more than just romance, and helped to pull the reader into the story. I didn’t expect this aspect of the novel, and found myself pleasantly surprised. Aside from Catherine and the King of Hearts, readers will meet other Wonderland favs before the magic of the world changed them into who we meet in Carroll’s novel. This book was great fun and kept me hooked from beginning to end. I’ve read a lot of retellings lately, and Heartless is an example of one done right.