Author: Marissa Meyer
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Retelling
Number of Pages (Hardcover): 453
Date Published: November 8th of 2016
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Synopsis (via 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.
Rate: 5 of 5
‘Off with his head.’
Well then, that line got a whole new meaning for me and I’m crying with grief. My heart is just…it’s in pieces right now, okay?
Dear me, 2017 is proving to be a great year for fantasy books for me. Remember when I used to say I’m not particularly fond of reading fantasy books? What was I thinking? Hahaha. I picked up Heartless because I heard great things about Marissa Meyer but I was not ready to commit with another series just yet with her Lunar Chronicles (even though I heard many a good things!) so I opted for one of her standalone books and I’m very happy to tell you that I’m going to perhaps read all of her works from now on. This book has been such a charming read, albeit very heartbreaking.
Note the irony: the book is heartbreaking yet it’s titled heartless. Get it? Okay, moving on. 😛 The title Heartless resonated true in so many levels that it just doesn’t apply in the literal sense.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I had difficulty trying to keep up with my notes because I just didn’t want to stop reading. I must also add that I am not really a fan of Alice in Wonderland so it really came as a surprise to me that I really liked this one. I was so endeared with the characters that I actually cried a little with the ending. I loved the new side of the story that this tale has painted.
I liked all the main characters since they were all portrayed in a new light while still staying true to the original tale, especially that of Catherine’s. Catherine’s character is so in contrast to the supposed ending that I was always thrown off if what is supposed to happen will happen. Somewhere along the line, I was hoping that it wouldn’t. But, oh boy. And also, let us take a moment to appreciate the oh-so cute name rebranding of the Hatter and the Hare which are Hatta and Haigha. Can you even handle how proper Hare’s new name is? Haigha!
Some people found this a little lulling but, as for me, I loved the pacing because it gave me the chance to find my footing with this new retelling of the story. I had the right amount of time to acclimate to the environment and the confinements of the story.
As I have said, the ending was really heartbreaking and it was really refreshing in the sense that the ending was not satisfying. I mean, sometimes it just gotta happen, you know? I loved how even though this is a retelling, it still stayed true to the original work of Lewis Caroll and shed a light on the character of an iconic villain. I will perhaps not see Alice in Wonderland‘s iconic villain the same way ever again without feeling a little tug in my heart. Thanks, Marissa.*proceeds crying*
This book got me feeling all kilig and warm inside and honestly I really loved it with all my heart. I was fifty percent squealing with delight, perhaps thirty percent shaking with anticipation and twenty percent crying. 😛
Do I recommend it? Girl. Yes, of course.
‘Once I was a lonely Rook upon a distant shore,
and I would murder for my queen so we might win a war.
Now mine eyes see the heart that once we did search for,
and I fear this heart shall be mended, nevermore.’