Series: Eurona Duology #1
Published by HarperTeen on March 8th 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
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.
We really did not like this one. We both rated it two stars and had a lot of issues with it. There were barely any redeeming qualities to this one. Jamie really liked that the girls were supportive of one another in their emotions and feelings; however, they were always discussing boys rather than how their lives were affected. Granted, Wyneth’s fiancé was eaten by the beast and Aerity had to marry someone she didn’t necessarily love, but there was so much more happening that they could have discussed. Dani felt sorry for the King because he had to do something he didn’t necessarily want to do: marry his daughter off to someone for diplomacy.
There are two real reasons we both didn’t like it, tbh, but they are HUGE and made it really difficult to enjoy. One is that the world-building was a little lacking, and the second is the men in this story. With the world-building, it seemed as though we were just expected to know the things that Aerity and company knew, mostly when it came to how the magic was used and what it meant. We were really confused when we were getting the perspectives on how magic is used. We understood that there is general fear of the unknown, and therefore magic would be feared in this land, however, it just didn’t quite work for us. It felt like there was a piece of the puzzle missing for it to all click together to make a beautiful masterpiece. And the “enemy” kinda came out of the blue, but we think she would have made more sense if we understood just a BIT MORE about the magic in the world.
The world itself didn’t make sense; it should have been hundreds of miles between locations, but they could travel there so easily, especially with the climate changes. Too much climate change variety for the amount of space. It seemed like the author had taken Scandinavians, Scottish, Arabic, and African cultures and lands and meshed them together on one small island, but there was no basis for it.
Secondly, all the guys were assholes so, you know, there’s that. There was quite a bit of romance, but Jamie wasn’t put off by it the way she typically is of romance in novels. Sure, there was gratuitous descriptions of the male love interest, and yeah, Aerity was drooling over Paxton’s looks immediately, but she also just really wanted what was best for her kingdom, even if it wasn’t what was best for her heart. Jamie wasn’t a fan of any of the ships and found them all to be very heterosexual. When the lady tribes came in, she was like “YES PRINCESS LOVE,” but then they were just going to let the leader’s brother take the “prize”. (Which is another reason Jamie was ehhhh about this book. Aerity was a literal prize to be won.)
Leif was just a piece of work. He was such an asshole. He kissed girls without consent. He told Wyneth he would still want to sleep with her even after he married her cousin. Like, were we supposed to swoon over that? We couldn’t handle it or him and we both hope he dies in the next book, but don’t have enough care to actually read to find out.
Overall, we would say if you want to check this one out, get it from the library OR enter to win it below! Dani is giving away her copy so please take it off her hands if soap operas are your thing. Also, check out below for what Jamie wanted to happen at the end.
Jamie was hoping for something a bit more out of this book. In particular, there were two things she would have done differently that would have made the book that much more enjoyable.View Spoiler »
First, when the lady tribe was introduced, I was hoping that the ladies would have wanted Aerity for one of their wives, instead of giving her to one of the men. That was so boring and heterosexual.
Second, when Aerity goes to fight the beast, I was secretly hoping she would land the killing blow, thus not having to marry any of the suitors and having whichever man (OR LADY) she wanted for her own. I think it would have been interesting — especially if she still picked Douche #2 (Leif) because she knew that their countries were having a hard time with their relations. POLITICAL STUFF!!! But I was kinda disappointed that she got the beast calmed down, stuck a knife in it, and then was knocked out the whole time.
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What did you think? Let us know in the comments, making sure to preface any spoilery comments with “SPOILER DISCUSSION”.
- Who did you connect to most in THE GREAT HUNT?
- If you had to choose between Lord Alvi and Paxton, who would you choose?
- Did you enjoy this book? Tell us why.
Win a (used but good condition) hardcover of THE GREAT HUNT by Wendy Higgins!