Google+ Reading Teen: Darkest Mercy Mini Review and The Wicked Lovely Series by Melissa Marr

Monday, December 13, 2010

Darkest Mercy Mini Review and The Wicked Lovely Series by Melissa Marr

Wicked Lovely (Wicked Lovely (Quality))Ink Exchange (Wicked Lovely (Quality))Fragile Eternity (Wicked Lovely)Radiant Shadows (Wicked Lovely)

Those that know me, know that the Wicked Lovely series is my favorite Faery series, and one of my favorite books ever.  I just finished the last book in the series and I am just amazed by Melissa Marr's extraordinary talent.  It still surprises me how many people have not read these books, so I thought I'd write a post on all of the books, in case you're unfamiliar with them.  I have to say that I would definitely recommend this series to adults.  If you're an adult, don't be put off by the fact that it is marketed to Young Adults, this series is smart, and mature and if you like fantasy at all, I think you will love these books.  What is so amazing is how each book is told from different characters point of views, and each book focuses on a different aspect of Faerie and all the different Faerie courts.  There are bits and pieces of each book in the others, and the last book brings them all back together, for an amazing conclusion.

Wicked Lovely (Wicked Lovely (Quality))
  • Reading level: Young Adult
  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (April 29, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061214671
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061214677
  • On the cover:  AISLINN

Wicked Lovely focuses mainly on the Summer Court and the Winter Court and the struggles between them.  There is mention of the Dark Court and the High Court, but there isn't much told about them.  As my first introduction to Faery, I absolutely loved this book.  It's one of the only books I've read twice.

The story begins with Aislinn (Ash).  While most mortals go through their lives never knowing or seeing Faeries, Aislinn hasn't been so lucky.  She has Faery Sight, and has seen the cruel ways that faeries treat humans, and each other.  Her grandmother has warned her never to let them know that she can see them.  She's given Aislinn rules to live by, the most important being, never attract their attention.  Unfortunately, no matter how hard she tried, she couldn't escape the notice of one particular faery. Keenan, the Summer King, has been looking for his queen for centuries.  As long as he is without his queen, his powers are bound by a curse.  When he sees Aislinn, he feels that she is different, and that she will be the one to break the curse and bring the Summer Realm back to their full strength.  But Aislinn doesn't want to be a queen, or a faery, she just wants to be a normal girl.  A girl who is falling in love with her best friend, Seth.  Soon, she has to make a decision between what she wants more than anything, and what's best for a world she never thought she wanted to be a part of.

Ink Exchange (Wicked Lovely (Quality))
  • Reading level: Young Adult
  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; Reprint edition (March 31, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061214701
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061214707
  • On the cover:  LESLIE 

 Ink Exchange focuses mainly on the Dark Court.  Although Ash and Keenan make an appearance, they are not the main characters of this book.  This is probably my least favorite book, which may have to do with how dark it is, and also because when I read it, I was disappointed that Ash and Keenan weren't in it more.  I didn't realize, at the time, that it isn't a normal sequel. I think, knowing what I know now, that I should re-read this book, and maybe I won't be so focused on NOT seeing Ash, and can focus more on Leslie and Niall (who I love).

Things are changing in the Faerie realm and it is having devastating effects on the Dark Court.  The dark court faeries feed on the dark human emotions, fear, lust, hate, sadness.  Irial, the King of the Dark Court thinks he has found a way to increase his faeries' ability to feed on these emotions, but it will take a human conduit to work.  Aislinn's friend, Leslie has had a really hard life.  She is ready for a change, and when she sees a tattoo with wings and eyes, she believes that getting it will mark that change in her life.  What she doesn't know is that it isn't a normal tattoo.  The ink binds her to Irial, and the Dark Court and pulls her deeper and deeper into the sinister world that they are a part of.  Once in this world, she is completely consumed by it, and soon no one knows if she will make it out alive. 

Fragile Eternity (Wicked Lovely)
  • Reading level: Young Adult
  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; 1 Reprint edition (March 23, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061214736
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061214738
  • On the cover:  HIGH QUEEN, SORCHA

In Fragile Eternity we are finally introduced fully to the High Court, and the High Queen, Sorcha.  This books takes us back to Aislinn, Keenan, and Seth, and the struggles they face as they try to sort out their relationships to each other.  This book is HIGH on romantic tension.  Those of you that like a good romance will love this one.  Although I didn't think a lot actually happened in this book, the writing was amazing and I ate up the romance!

Now that Aislinn is the Summer Queen, and summer is quickly approaching, she finds herself more and more attracted to Keenan.  Although Seth is patient, he knows that one day his mortality will come between he and Ash, and he isn't going to give her up without a fight.  In this book, Seth chances all in the hope that he can find a way for he and Ash to be together.  But things don't turn out exactly as he planned. 

Radiant Shadows (Wicked Lovely)
  • Reading level: Young Adult
  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (April 20, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061659223
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061659225
  • On the cover:  ANI, THE HALF HUMAN, HALF FEY

Radiant Shadows, probably my favorite book in the series, takes another detour from Ash, Keenan, and Seth and focuses on characters that we've only had glimpses of before.  Ani, the daughter of Gabrielle, who is the leader of the dark court's Wild Hunt; and Devlin the Brother of Sorcha, the high queen.  Sorcha's twin sister, and the embodimet of Discord, Bananach, wants to kill Ani, and Devlin has been secretly protecting her since she was a child.  But Ani is all grown up now, and refuses to just sit there and let others take care of her.  When she and Devlin come face to face as adults, they are immediately attracted to each other.  This sets in motion a string of events that will eventually lead to major changes in the world of faerie, and ultimately set up the last book in the series, and the war that seems inevitable.  For my full review of Radiant Shadows, click here.

  • Reading level: Young Adult
  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (February 22, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061659258
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061659256

The Courts are in chaos, and war is brewing.  As the monarchs try to work together to fight Bananach, and keep their fey safe, they also have to deal with their own relationships.  The Summer King is torn between the need to strengthen his court with Aislinn (his queen), and being with Donia, the queen of Winter and the Faery that he loves.  Aislinn must choose, once and for all, between Kennan, her king, and Seth, the love of her life.  Niall has lost the one thing he loves most, and may just lose his sanity as well.  Donia wants to let go of Keenan, and move on with her life, but feels like her world is ending without him.  Bananach, has sown the seeds of war and has now come to reap them, and Seth has information about the Faery world, which may save them, or just may kill them all. 

All of the previous books in the Wicked Lovely Series come together in this fantastic finale. 

When I got this book in the mail, I dropped everything to read it.  I didn't know how Melissa could possibly bring together all of the many, many threads of the previous books, but she did it, and did it brilliantly.  I thought that I knew how I wanted this series to end, (and it did not end how I wanted) but I was so wrong!  And that shows you how amazingly talented she is.  When, at the end of a book, I can say, "No, you were right, and I was wrong," you know you've done something right!  Darkest Mercy was beautifully written, and intelligently crafted.  The perfect ending to a one-of-a-kind series.  Bravo, Melissa, you are Wicked Lovely!

My full review of Darkest Mercy will be posted closer to the release day which is Feb. 22, 2011.

You may want to know:  The Wicked Lovely series has a smattering profanity, including the "big words" and sexual content in each of the books, as well as quite a bit of violence.  This is especially true in Ink Exchange which focuses on the dark court.  If you'd like more information, check out The Wicked Lovely Series on Parental Book Reviews.


  1. Love this series. Wicked Lovely is one of my top 10 favorite YA books.

  2. Great post!
    I like this series as well!
    Can't wait for Darkest Mercy!

  3. Wow great review! I have not read them yet, but I do have Wicked Lovely in my TBR pile (which I had signed during the Smart Chicks Kick It Tour this past summer.)

    I am really looking forward to reading this series now.

  4. I love this series, as well. I do think it's crazy, however, that INK EXCHANGE was your least favorite; it was definitely my absolute favorite of the series. I loved the narrative in that one - it was beautiful, I thought, the way she portrayed the addiction and numbness vs. pain. Can't wait for DARKEST MERCY!!!!

  5. KM- yeah, I've been wanting to re-read Ink Exchange knowing what I know now. At the time I was just so disappointed it wasn't Ash and Keenan that I couldn't really enjoy it. Plus, the ending wasn't what I would've hoped for. But, then again, it wasn't really the end (which I didn't understand then either). I do really like Niall, a LOT, he's one of my favorite characters. I actually wish there was more about him.

  6. I couldn't read all your reviews because I've only read Wicked Lovely so far. That book's really surprised me, sometimes I even forgot I was reading a YA book, it's so different! There's no "Team A" or "Team B" because there's so much more than this in the story. I suffered a lot with Donia... And I'm looking forward to reading Ink Exchange, I love anything dark. :)

  7. Jam-

    I tried to keep the reviews as spoiler free as possible, but you would definitely know that some people weren't killed, or whatever if you read them all. I hope you like the rest of the series. I think they are all really good, and the best part is seeing how they're all linked together! Enjoy!!

  8. I'm really looking forward to reading this! I'm a little nervous about the ending now that you said it ends differently than you had hoped. I am really hoping for Ash to step up and be with Keenan and take on the full role of being the summer queen. Like you book 2 disappointed me because I wanted Keenan and Ash to be in it, I feel the most vested in them because it started with them. Although I do care about all of the characters of course.

  9. Murphys~I'll be really interested to see what you thought about it when you're done! Please come back and tell me!!


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