Monday 12 October 2015

{Review} The Great Hunt by Wendy Higgins

25788145Posted by Donna
Release Date: March 6th, 2016
Finished Date: September 21st, 2016
Publishers: HarperTeen
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Romance
Source: For Review
Format: eARC
Pages: 426
Buy: Amazon UK Amazon US
Kill the beast. Win the girl.

A strange beast stirs fear in the kingdom of Lochlanach, terrorizing towns with its brutality and hunger. In an act of desperation, a proclamation is sent to all of Eurona—kill the creature and win the ultimate prize: the daughter of King Lochson’s hand in marriage.

Princess Aerity understands her duty to the kingdom though it pains her to imagine marrying a stranger. It would be foolish to set her sights on any particular man in the great hunt, but when a brooding local hunter, Paxton Seabolt, catches her attention, there’s no denying the unspoken lure between them…or his mysterious resentment.

Paxton is not keen on marriage. Nor does he care much for spoiled royals and their arcane laws. He’s determined to keep his focus on the task at hand—ridding the kingdom of the beast and protecting his family—yet Princess Aerity continues to challenge his notions with her unpredictability and charm. But as past secrets collide with present desires, dire choices threaten everything Paxton holds dear.

Inspired by the Grimm Brothers’ tale, “The Singing Bone,” New York Times bestselling author Wendy Higgins delivers a dark fantasy filled with rugged hunters, romantic tension, outlawed magic, and a princess willing to risk all to save her people.

The Review: The Great Hunt is a new fantasy romance story retelling Brothers Grimm tale, The Singing Bone. If like me and you’re not familiar with the story then let me tell you you’re in for a right treat!

When a terrible beast rips through the kingdom of Lochlanach and starts killing people Princess Aerity’s father does the only thing he can think of and offers his daughter’s hand in marriage to the person who can slay the beast, whether they are royalty or not.

Princess Aerity has always known that her kingdom must come first but she never thought she’d have to give up the one thing that was hers – her love. But in order to stop the terrible things happening, she will do as her father asks and marry a stranger. But when Paxton Seabolt arrives at the palace Princess Aerity hopes that he’ll be the one to win.

However, Paxton Seabolt has other ideas. He’s not there to win the princess’s hand in marriage. He’s there to do what he does best and that’s hunt. But the more time he spends with the Princess the more he starts to open up but for Paxton that’s not a good idea, because he’s hiding a secret that could destroy him and his family...

I have to admit I did have my struggles when I first started reading The Great Hunt. I found the first quarter of the book quite slow paced and I did wonder if I have to DNF the book but I’m glad I stuck through because the story really does pick up and to start with I realise now that the author was world-building and so enough I was enthralled and now I only have good things to say about it.

This was such a refreshing read, mainly because I didn’t know anything about the original story and after some web searching and of course reading this book, I was pleasantly surprised to find that Higgins has done a good job on retelling the story but also by making it her own – or so far anyway. I was under the impression this was a standalone story but it’s not, it’s a duology. And after that ending I really wish I had the second part already in my hands.

The story has a great set of characters and some fantastic secondary characters that I’ve found hard to forget. Princess Aerity and Paxton’s relationship is so interesting that I’m dying to know more. I loved their moments together.   

In all, The Great Hunt is a fresh YA fantasy story by a talented author and I only hope, even after the sequel that Higgins has more fantasy stories up her sleeve because I know that this one series is not going to be enough.

 Thank you to Balzer & Bray for giving me the opportunity to review this book in exchange for an honest review. 

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