Monday, December 19, 2016

Heartless by Marissa Meyer

Summary on Goodreads:

Catherine may be one of the most desired girls in Wonderland and a favorite of the unmarried King, but her interests lie elsewhere. A talented baker, she wants to open a shop and create delectable pastries. But for her mother, such a goal is unthinkable for a woman who could be a queen.

At a royal ball where Cath is expected to receive the King’s marriage proposal, she meets handsome and mysterious Jest. For the first time, she feels the pull of true attraction. At the risk of offending the King and infuriating her parents, she and Jest enter into a secret courtship.

Cath is determined to choose her own destiny. But in a land thriving with magic, madness, and monsters, fate has other plans.
I never thought it would take me over 2 weeks to complete a Marissa Meyer book, but it did…At first, I couldn’t explain what exactly it was that I was not liking. The world-building was magical. The writing was like revisiting Lewis Carroll, who I love. Everything had this sugary layer of whimsical to it, and I enjoyed that. I really did. It truly felt like Wonderland.
I almost stopped reading this book though, several times. Not a lot happened in it (until the last 100 pages or so). It was a forbidden love story, and sometimes I like those and sometimes I don’t. I guess I like them when there is something unique and special about them. And I guess the author was relying on the amazing world and whimsical, yet dark somehow at the same time, side characters to stand in for the story being lackluster. But, the amazingness of everything else could not hide the fact that the forbidden love story plot was nothing new or special.
And I wish I could say the love interests/main characters were new or special, but they weren’t either. Cath was so dull. Yes, she loved baking. And reading this book really had me craving sugar. But, that was it to her character. She fell for Jest really quickly, and mostly because she dreamed him before she met him. But, she never stood up for herself or what she wanted. Why did she let the king court her at all? Either you do what you want to do or you do what your parents want you to do. Deciding this took hundreds and hundreds of pages of indecision. At least I was hoping for some sizzling, typical Meyer romance in that indecision. But no, there was very little of that.
There was one fabulous tea party, and some truly amazing side characters to meet. But, really, it was hundreds of pages of “should I or shouldn’t I?” And I wanted to slap some sense into this spoiled, ignorant, mean, and kind of stupid main character.
I did enjoy that last 100 pages. So much happened with monsters, pumpkins, best friends, adventures, prophecies, and revenge. I wish the book started there. I’m not sure if I recommend this book or not. Reading it requires a steadfast determination to eventually, near the end, get to the good stuff. I was hoping for more romance, more plot, and a better main character. I give it a 5/10.


  1. Oh no! I never would have expected this from a Meyer book either... I would still like to read this because I adore the Lunar Chronicles, but I ought to go into it with lowered expectations I guess..

  2. People are comparing this to Fairest and I didn't have the greatest luck with Fairest so I'm a bit worried that I'd feel like you did with this one! I'll still check it out eventually but now I know what to expect...