Young Adult Book Review: HIDDEN HUNTRESS by Danielle L. Jensen
Stolen Songbird by Danielle L. Jensen
Series: The Malediction Trilogy #1
Young Adult, Fantasy, Magic, Romance
Publication Date: April 1st, 2014
Strange Chemistry, 436 pages
My Rating: 4 Stars
Source: ARC Publisher
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Sometimes, one must accomplish the impossible.
Beneath the mountain, the king’s reign of tyranny is absolute; the one troll with the capacity to challenge him is imprisoned for treason. Cécile has escaped the darkness of Trollus, but she learns all too quickly that she is not beyond the reach of the king’s power. Or his manipulation.
Recovered from her injuries, she now lives with her mother in Trianon and graces the opera stage every night. But by day she searches for the witch who has eluded the trolls for five hundred years. Whether she succeeds or fails, the costs to those she cares about will be high.
To find Anushka, she must delve into magic that is both dark and deadly. But the witch is a clever creature. And Cécile might not just be the hunter. She might also be the hunted…
Last year Stolen Songbird was one of my favorite reads and with an ending like it had, my anticipations for HIDDEN HUNTRESS was extremely high and so were my expectations.
Tristan's viewpoint. Hidden Huntress continues the series with the use of alternating points of view between Tristan and Cecile. Whereas in Stolen Songbird I thought Cecile was the star, this time around Tristan shines. He has so much character growth that fans of the series will not want to miss reading Hidden Huntress. Nor will they be disappointed that they didn't get enough Tristan time. Held hostage by his father with iron spikes in his wrist preventing him the use of his magic, he is very much the tortured, dark hero. But, have no fear because Tristan is as good as his Troll father at plotting and planning, and I couldn't wait to see him triumph over it all. Both Half-Troll and Full-Bloods distrust him and in this series we see him work with them, gaining their trust and becoming a leader in his own right. I love his quirks and attitude so much in Hidden Huntress. Even when he does not have the use of his gift, his strength is evident.
Magic and Prophecy. There's dark and mysterious magic running through the story. It involves Anushka and Cecile, and as the prophecy entwines their lives, so does the magic. Cecile is about to find out how dark and dangerous the magic is first hand.
Cecile's determination to bring down the witch who cursed Trollus. As I mention below, the beginning of the story is slow, but once Cecile begins her quest to find the true identity of Anushka, she becomes quite the huntress. I think this where the title description fits her perfectly in this story. Her actions are more subtle in Hidden Huntress. She plots and plans, stealthy stalking her prey.
The mythology and backstory of the villainess Anushka. As readers, it has been teasingly hinted at and withheld, now we finally have the backstory that we've all been waiting for. It was not so much who, but why for me. Danielle cleverly crafts a backstory that had me gasping and may induce the tiniest part of sympathy from readers towards this villainess.
The romance. Tristan and Cecile have such great chemistry together. Although in Hidden Huntress they are mostly apart, their bond let's the reader hear each other's thoughts and know each other's feelings. Despite the dangerous of the bond itself, their love remains strong. And wow, when these two finally get together, you feel as if they are an unstoppableteam. Tristan and Cecile are one of my favorite couples, and there is sizzle and swoon not to be missed.
The ending. I would say the ending unleashes a great twist, one that has me clamoring for the next installment already. The reveal wasn't as much of a surprise, but it was the way Danielle incrementally increased the danger and intensity keeping me on edge.
The beginning is slow. I had a hard time with the beginning of the story, pushing through the first 100 pages or so. I think this is mostly for the fact I did not enjoy the aspect of singing, Opera and Cecile's mother. But, I will say after reading the entire story it becomes clear why this part is so important for Cecile's character development. It is SO worth it though - keep reading!
I miss the world of Trollus. Again, the beginning takes us out of Trollus and I missed its unique beauty and the world terribly. Trianon just could not compare nor hold my fascination like Trollus. Thank goodness there is some time spent there.
IN THE END:
HIDDEN HUNTRESS started off slow but continued on to be an amazing story with an action filled ending that left me breathless and so excited for the next installment. Tristan and Cecile have an epic quest coming their way. I am going to make sure that I am there to read it!!
My Rating: 4 Stars. I liked it!
PLEASE NOTE: A courtesy review copy of this book was provided by Strange Chemistry in exchange for my fair review. Thank you Strange Chemistry for the review opportunity!