Game of Thrones meets the Grimm’s fairy tales in this twisted, fast-paced romantic fantasy-adventure about Sleeping Beauty’s daughter, a warrior princess who must fight to reclaim her throne.
It’s been ten years since Princess Aurora’s mother, the Sleeping Beauty, sacrificed her life to give her daughter her magical powers. Aurora knows that magic is never free. The price for hers is that she will never know romantic love.
Prince Niklaas is living on borrowed time. Unless he is able to convince a princess to marry him before his eighteenth birthday, he will meet the same terrible fate as his ten older brothers.
When Niklaas and Aurora meet under unusual circumstances, they must race to prevent the fulfillment of an ogre prophecy foretelling the end of human life. But will they be able to break their curses?
“Compelling and action-packed. . . . The combination of adventure; lovable, complex characters; and a touch of romance make this a book that teens will be drawn to, especially those who appreciate strong female protagonists.”—School Library Journal
“The plotting is impeccable, the world building ample, and the resolution neatly done without feeling pat.”—Booklist
“The banter between rakish Niklaas and feisty Aurora is crackling with chemistry and wit.”—The Bulletin
“We absolutely loved Stacey Jay’s Princess of Thorns, a riveting retelling of ‘Sleeping Beauty’ that's full of action, drama and romance.”—romantictimes.com
“Will appeal to fantasy lovers.”—VOYA
“Jay creates people with real flaws, but endows them with enough integrity to be characters to respect and want to know.”—examiner.com
Praise for Juliet Immortal
“The bones of the classic Beauty and the Beast story are all here, imaginatively fleshed out with tropes from science fiction, fantasy, even political drama. . . . Will please readers who like to believe that fairy tales can come true, even under dire circumstances.” —The Bulletin, Recommended
Praise for Of Beast and Beauty
“The romance is intense, and so is the horror in this strong reversal of the Romeo and Juliet story. . . . Teens will enjoy the macabre fantasy story of forbidden love.” —Booklist
A pair of cursed royals Princess Aurora, facing death to fulfill an ancient prophecy, and Prince Niklaas, son of an immortal king whose descendants never reach age 18 rely on each other to survive in Jay's (Of Beast and Beauty) re-imagining of "Sleeping Beauty." Their partnership, however, is steeped in lies. Blessed with mercy, bravery, and preternatural strength, Aurora is masquerading a boy as her brother, Jor, in order to conceal her quest to save him from captivity by the Ogre Queen. Niklaas, meanwhile, feigns interest in wooing Aurora without revealing his own dire circumstances. Chapters are split between the two characters' perspectives, allowing them to reveal their motivations, fears, distrust, and growing affection for one another in distinct but equally stubborn voices. This dual narrative becomes even more effective when Niklaas is robbed of his free will, after which he conveys his single-minded pursuits with a flat, cold voice. In giving the two teens ample room to explore their emotional journeys, Jay's book maintains a languid pace, before picking up in the second half of the tale. Ages 14 up.
Love the action, love story and characters! Great plot and great book.
Sweetly Entertaining Fairytale
I would like to thank Random House Children's & NetGalley for granting me a copy of this e-book to read in exchange for an honest review. Though I received this e-book for free that in no way impacts my review.
Goodreads Teaser: Game of Thrones meets the Grimm's fairy tales in this twisted, fast-paced romantic fantasy-adventure about Sleeping Beauty's daughter, a warrior princess who must fight to reclaim her throne.
Though she looks like a mere mortal, Princess Aurora is a fairy blessed with enhanced strength, bravery, and mercy yet cursed to destroy the free will of any male who kisses her. Disguised as a boy, she enlists the help of the handsome but also cursed Prince Niklaas to fight legions of evil and free her brother from the ogre queen who stole Aurora's throne ten years ago.
Will Aurora triumph over evil and reach her brother before it's too late? Can Aurora and Niklaas break the curses that will otherwise forever keep them from finding their one true love?
A lovely romantic adventure with its basis firmly planted in two different fairy tales, though the tales have been co-opted for this book. They have the same names and cast of characters, but that's where the resemblances stop.
Aurora has lived most of her life with the weight of the world on her shoulders, yet she manages to grow into a headstrong, intelligent, funny, and tender hearted young woman. When faced with a fire prophecy she must head back to the kingdom of her birth to rescue her brother.
Niklaas is the other protagonist of this story, and like Ror he too has a fairytale for his background. Like most princes he is originally an insufferable jerk, to full of his own good opinion of himself and his sexual prowess. Luckily for him most of that is just his age talking.
Watching Ror and Niklaas struggle to overcome one trial after another is entertaining, and they are well developed characters. So much so that it is well neigh unto impossible not to root for each of them. Their interactions speak volumes to everyone around them, yet they remain oblivious. Even when Ror lists all the reasons why she can't stand him it's clear that she's trying to convince herself right along with him.
The pace of the story is solid, though it does tend to drag a bit before the start of the climatic ending. Otherwise the pacing and character growth are nicely tied together, keeping the characters sympathetic and relatable. Their doomed romance is heartwarming, even as it reaches its terminal condition. Can true love really conquer all, or is that simply a fairytale myth?
4.5 stars -- A completely different tale of Sleeping Beaut
This book was a departure from the normal genre of books that I usually read, but I was willing to give it a try on the recommendation of a friend. This story deals with what happened to Sleeping Beauty after she got her prince and her daughter's (Aurora) journey to reclaim her throne.
Princess Aurora turns out to be a fairy, blessed with Sleeping Beauty's fairy powers, but yet cursed to destroy any male she kisses. Prince Niklaas is searching for Aurora to get her to marry him before his eighteenth birthday, or he will turn into a swan like his ten brothers before him. Dressed as her brother, she convinces Niklaas to help her raise an army to go against the evil Queen, but she really needs the army to help save her brother. Will she be able to save her brother before she dies? Will Niklaas turn into a swan like his brothers?
I have to say, it took me a couple of chapters to really get into the story and figure out the three different POVs, but it picked up the pace not too far in. This makes you think about what happened with the rest of the princesses we all grew up hearing about. How did their lives turn out? Does the fairy tale always end with a happy ending that lasts for eternity? This is a book that I feel comfortable passing down to my 16 year old granddaughter. Well worth the time to read.
**Complimentary Copy provided by Author for an honest review.**