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The princess isn't supposed to fall for an evil sorceress. But in this darkly magical retelling of Sleeping Beauty, true love is more complicated than a simple fairy tale. Perfect for fans of Naomi Novik and Holly Black.
Once upon a time, there was a wicked fairy who cursed a line of princesses to die, and could only be broken by true love's kiss. You've heard this before, haven't you? The handsome prince. The happily-ever-after.
Let me tell you, no one actually cares about what happens to our princesses. I thought I didn't care, either. Until I met her.
Princess Aurora. The last heir to the throne. The future queen her realm needs. One who isn't bothered that I am the Dark Grace, abhorred and feared for the mysterious dark magic that runs in my veins. Aurora says I should be proud of my gifts. That she . . . cares for me. Even though it was a power like mine that was responsible for her curse.
But with less than a year until that curse will kill her, any future I might see with Aurora is swiftly disintegrating - and she can't stand to kiss yet another insipid prince. I want to help her. If my power began her curse, perhaps it's what can lift it. Perhaps, together, we could forge a new world.
Nonsense again. Because we all know how this story ends, don't we? Aurora is the beautiful princess. And I-
I am the villain.
'Malice is the dark and wicked heart of a fairytale carved into a book. This story is beautiful, vicious magic.' Tasha Suri, author of Empire of Sand
'A truly original and clever retelling of a classic that had me racing to the end - you'll never look at Sleeping Beauty the same again.' S.A. Chakraborty, author of City of Brass
'The story grows deliciously darker at every turn . . . Fairy tale lovers of all ages will be thrilled' Publishers Weekly, starred review
© Heather Walter 2021 (P) Penguin Audio 2021