By Marissa Meyer
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends (November 8, 2016)
Hardcover: 464 pages
Goodreads | Amazon
Long before she was the terror of Wonderland — the infamous Queen of Hearts — she was just a girl who wanted to fall in love.
Catherine may be one of the most desired girls in Wonderland, and a favorite of the yet-unmarried King of Hearts, but her interests lie elsewhere. A talented baker, all she wants is to open a shop with her best friend and supply the Kingdom of Hearts with delectable pastries and confections. But according to her mother, such a goal is unthinkable for the young woman who could be the next Queen.
At a royal ball where Cath is expected to receive the king's marriage proposal, she meets Jest, the handsome and mysterious court joker. 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 an intense, secret courtship.
Cath is determined to define her own destiny and fall in love on her terms. But in a land thriving with magic, madness, and monsters, fate has other plans.
Heartless is a retelling told in the vein of Alice in Wonderland but about the origin story of the Queen of Hearts. Now I'm not the biggest Wonderland fan but I'm a huge retelling/origin story fan, so I knew it was going to be either a hit or a miss; no in between. Meyer sure didn't skip any stops in telling us how the Queen of Hearts became so heartless (pun not intended- or was it?).
Cath was a fun, quirky character, who honestly reminded me a lot of what Alice was like (from what I remember from the movies). I was completely grossed/creeped out by the King of Hearts, much like Cath was. He was just a weirdo and the way he just wanted to get married without courting her rubbed me the wrong way, which was obviously a little bit of the point. But Jest? Sa-woooooon. I could totally understand why Cath was so captivated by him, but I could never really grasp if he was just messing with her or if he was actually genuine in his feelings.
The plot was pretty well-rounded and thought out. However, I wish it would have picked up a little quicker than it did. It took me a little while to actually be absorbed into the story, which doesn't say a lot considering I've been in quite the reading slump this year.
All in all, I really enjoyed Heartless. Did I enjoy it as much as Meyer's Lunar Chronicles series? Not nearly enough. But it was still quite a ride and I loved seeing a little back story about some of the characters in Alice in Wonderland that I didn't really know much about before I read Heartless. Marissa Meyer's storytelling is still one to contend with. I just wish there was little bit more of that 'something' it seemed to be missing. If you're a Wonderland fan, Heartless is not to be missed, and even if you know nothing about Wonderland (such as me), it's still worth picking up!
Have you read Heartless? What did you think? Haven't read it? Which part makes you the most excited for it? Be sure to check out my twitter today to see the twitter challenge featuring Marissa's Queen of Hearts inspired outfit!