Author: Rhiannon Thomas
Publisher: Harper Teen
Publication Date: February 2015
Genre: Young Adult Fiction/Fantasy
Series or Stand Alone: Series, Book One
Synopsis can be found here.
I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Aurora awakens 100 years after she falls asleep to find her family dead, her kingdom damaged and a marriage to the prince who kissed her on the horizon. Sneaking out at night, she stumbles into a club and meets Tristan, a boy with secrets and a charming smile. A revolution is brewing because her betrothed’s father, the recent king, is tyrannical and the people have had enough. But what can Aurora do to save them?
I liked the idea of Sleeping Beauty waking up to find a new world. There’s a lot of discourse and tension through the entire book. Aurora barely knew herself before she went to sleep and now her previous life seems like a forgotten dream. I liked Aurora’s journey, balancing between being the puppet her new in-laws want her to be and the person she might become. I liked the different variety of men in her life – from Tristan to her betrothed to a rival kingdom’s prince. They were all grey with shady intentions, none of them truly standing out as the “one for her”. I like that.
However, I found Aurora herself to be a bit on the boring side. She’s confused most of the time and mournful and a bit moody. I would have liked to see more fire from her, even in subtle and little ways. The majority of the book is spent on her coming to terms with everything that has happened and learning what the lore was around her sleeping. She’s a bit bland for me I guess. Then we come to her soon to be mother in law, the Queen. The Queen is a more interesting character by far. She has had it rougher than she admits, coming from a far kingdom. Her paranoia and obsession for constant control paints her as the villain but I haven’t made a decision about her yet. Then we get to the witch, who put the curse on Aurora in the first place. Her intentions are unclear, but very suspicious.
And that’s what bothered me about this story. The “virgin”, “mother” and “crone” triad. Aurora isn’t strong enough yet and while the Queen is the most interesting character of all three, she is certainly lacking in motivation and personality. The witch is a typical old villain with not much to add. There were not other female characters, besides Betsy the servant girl who is hardly in it at all. Aurora has no female friends to bounce off of. For some reason, this just bothered me. I know she’s supposed to feel isolated and alone, but these characters in particular made the book slow for me.
The plot also moves slowly. I think it’s great setup for the next book, but this as a first book is dull.
Sadly, I wasn’t a fan of A Wicked Thing. But I do think that the second book could be good and I would be interested in seeing what happens.
Rating 4 Not My Cup of Tea