Merit Cravan refused to fulfill her obligation to marry a prince, leading to a fairy godling’s curse. She will be forced to live as a beast forever, unless she agrees to marry a man of her mother’s choosing before her eighteenth birthday.
Tevin Dumont has always been a pawn in his family’s cons. The prettiest boy in a big family, his job is to tempt naïve rich girls to abandon their engagements, unless their parents agree to pay him off. But after his mother runs afoul of the beast, she decides to trade Tevin for her own freedom.
Now, Tevin and Merit have agreed that he can pay off his mother’s debt by using his con-artist skills to help Merit find the best match . . . but what if the best match is Tevin himself?
Author: Lish McBride
Publication Date: July 20, 2021
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Fantasy
This book took me by surprise in the best possible way. It was funny, fresh, and a completely unique retelling of a story I’ve heard many different ways.
Right off the bat, I was hit with excellent world-building. Everything felt fresh and unique. It was a great mix of modern ideas with old technology added with a bit of magic. Plus, it was pretty easy to get a grasp on this world. It wasn’t high fantasy, but still had enough magical bits and pieces to be intriguing.
As well, the humor was top-notch in this book. McBride had a lot of sarcastic characters that made a lot of jokes, many of them dry and she effortlessly translated that on paper. It’s hard to explain exactly how she did it (because the dialogue usually didn’t end with “Tevin said sarcastically”), but it was done well. It made me really love the characters and the world even when things got a bit serious.
Tevin. I know Tevin was supposed to be charming (like that was his whole thing), but he was so charming! I don’t know why that surprised me, but I really liked him. He wasn’t completely swoony in my opinion, but very charming and likeable.
One thing I felt like I missed from this book was some romantic build up. By that, I mean I didn’t feel like there was quite enough romantic tension between Tevin and Merit. By the end of the book, I didn’t feel like I had earned a happy ending. I wanted more pain and suffering before the good stuff. It sounds weird writing it down, but it’s true.
Overall, I loved this book so much! I wish McBride would write more books in this world, but I believe this was a stand-alone. That just means I’ll have to read this again soon!
Disclaimer: I voluntarily read and reviewed a gifted and advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
To check out my other reviews, click here. Or to check out more books by Lish McBride, go to her Goodreads profile or website.
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