The Cruel Prince By Holly Black (The Folk of the Air, 1) Book Review

the cruel prince book

good read Rating 4.1 out of 5 stars

The Cruel Prince is the first book of The Folk of the Air series by Holly Black. The book’s enchanting tale of fairies and intricate politics quickly pulls you into its magical world. Holly Black, the author, skillfully weaves the narrative, making the story come alive with vibrant details. The characters she creates are not just interesting; they’re downright fascinating. As you dive into the pages, you’ll find yourself immersed in a world where every twist and turn keeps you eagerly turning the pages, lost in the magic of it all.

Interesting Character

The Cruel Prince introduces us to some seriously cool characters, like Jude and Prince Cardan. Each of them brings something unique and special to the story, making it feel like you’re meeting new friends. Let’s start with Jude—she’s like the superhero of the tale. Strong, smart, and facing the challenges of a tricky world, she’s the kind of friend you’d want by your side in an adventure.

Jude Duarte, the main character in The Cruel Prince, is a tough and clever individual navigating a world full of tricks and danger. Her strength and intelligence shine as she strives to survive amidst deception. Throughout the book, Jude undergoes significant changes and grapples with tough decisions that shape her character.

And then there’s Prince Cardan, the other side of the coin. He’s got this intriguing aura, adding a different flavor to the mix. His presence sparks curiosity, like trying to figure out a puzzle. Together, Jude and Cardan create this dynamic duo that keeps you hooked, wondering what they’ll do next.

It’s not just about the main characters, though. The whole bunch, from the cunning to the kind-hearted, adds layers to the story. It’s like having a diverse group of friends with different personalities. Some you’ll love, some you might not, but that’s what makes the journey exciting.

Getting to know these characters feels like unwrapping presents. Each one comes with surprises, quirks, and a story to tell. It’s not just about their strengths; it’s about their vulnerabilities and the choices they make. You’ll find yourself cheering for them, cringing at their mistakes, and maybe even shaking your head at their antics, just like you would with real friends.

And let’s not forget the way they interact. It’s like watching a drama unfold, filled with twists and turns. The relationships between the characters add spice to the narrative, making it more than just a simple tale. It’s a social adventure, and you’re right there in the middle of it.


The fairies in the story have intricate relationships, filled with surprises that keep readers hooked. The interactions between characters and the challenges they face contribute to the story’s excitement. Each twist and turn adds to the overall thrill, making the journey through the book engaging.

The pacing of the story is just right, keeping readers interested with unexpected twists that unfold seamlessly. Holly Black’s writing style is delightful, breathing life into the magical world with vivid descriptions. The words on the pages paint a picture that captures the imagination, making the fantasy realm feel real and immersive.

Despite the story’s dark elements, they add a layer of authenticity and depth to the fantasy world. These darker aspects, while intense, contribute to the overall richness of the narrative. The characters, far from being simply good or bad, possess shades of complexity that enhance the book’s intrigue. This nuanced portrayal adds a level of depth that keeps readers invested in the characters’ journeys.

Jude’s evolution throughout the narrative is a central focus, showcasing her resilience and adaptability. The challenges she faces force her to confront her own strengths and weaknesses, creating a compelling character arc that resonates with readers.

The relationships between the fairies are not straightforward; they are tangled and intricate, adding layers of complexity to the story. The surprises that unfold within these relationships serve as hooks, keeping readers eagerly anticipating the next revelation. The dynamic interactions between characters contribute to the overall excitement, making the book a page-turner.

The well-balanced pacing ensures that the story unfolds at a pace that maintains interest. Unexpected twists are strategically placed, providing a sense of unpredictability that propels the narrative forward. These twists not only keep readers engaged but also contribute to the overall enjoyment of the story.

Holly Black’s writing is a standout feature, creating a magical world that comes alive with every sentence. The vivid descriptions transport readers to the fantastical realm, allowing them to visualize and experience the setting in all its enchanting glory. The author’s attention to detail and craftmanship adds depth to the narrative, enhancing the overall reading experience.

While the story explores dark themes, they serve a purpose in grounding the fantasy world in reality. These darker elements add complexity and nuance, elevating the narrative beyond a simple fairy tale. The characters, too, reflect this complexity, with shades of morality that challenge traditional notions of good and bad.

In Summary

The Cruel Prince is a compelling read that balances intricate relationships, unexpected twists, and a well-crafted magical world. Holly Black’s storytelling prowess shines through, creating a narrative that captivates readers from start to finish. Jude Duarte’s journey, filled with challenges and growth, serves as a poignant anchor for the story, while the complex web of fairy relationships adds a layer of intrigue. The book’s pacing, writing style, and nuanced exploration of darker themes contribute to its overall excellence, making it a must-read for fans of fantasy literature.

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