In honor of this month’s Writer’s Feature I reviewed Wendy Higgin’s latest novel.
Let the fairy tale begin!
The Great Hunt Review
“I must ask you to sacrifice the promise of love for the sake of our kingdom.” – Wendy Higgins, The Great Hunt
The Great Hunt by Wendy Higgins is the first book of the Eurona Duology series… something I knew nothing about when I picked up the book after a shift at work. Enchanted by the cover and excited by the fact that there was another book on fairy tales, it is loosely based off the Grimm tale The Singing Bone, I couldn’t wait to read Higgin’s story. The excitement has only grown after finishing the first book and the anticipation of book two is going to be a long painful process.
Meet the magical kingdom of Lochlanach with a King and Queen, their three lovely children, and a content village of townspeople. The picture I painted is a nice one especially with Higgins wonderful description of scenery… and then the Beast comes into the mix. As such tales go the Beast is believed to be made up, a way to scare little children and a bawdy tale to share after a long day’s work. Unfortunately for everyone involved the Beast is very real and is bent on eating everyone – yum, right? Not so much. After the death *spoiler* on the first page, Higgins sweeps readers into a world where marrying for love is no longer an option after the King reaches a point of desperation as the village tips to the edge of mutiny.
Princess Aerity is a sixteen-year-old girl torn between two worlds. She understands that she will be Queen some day and wants to be treated like an adult. Yet she is still naïve in some ways and desires a romance like her parents. Presented as a typical princess, Aerity surprises us with her shy, yet determined, demeanor along with her courage in doing something she never expected. I admire her ability to take a stand. She doesn’t cower behind her guards and let someone else do the dirty work. I look forward to see what she does about the magic issue. *cough cough*
When the King announces the ultimate prize, his daughter in marriage, every eligible bachelor from Lochlanach and neighboring kingdoms come to attend the contest. The rules are simple, kill the Beast and win the girl. Among the eligible bachelors is a hunter named Paxton. The irony falls in the fact that Paxton has a grudge against royals and a secret that prevents him from marrying. So of course Paxton and Aerity will be attracted to each other. The cliché becomes less of a cliché as the story unravels and all these twists and turns reveal information about the history of the Eurona. This is where the big magic factor comes in but alas I cannot say more!
My favorite part of this story is the growth between characters. Mixed among the expected elements of a fairy tale love story shines Higgins ability to create characters that hold depth and make readers root for them. Even the secondary characters have a dynamic all of their that left me attached. Though I will confess I couldn’t get enough of Pax even if his stubbornness left me grumbling. Then there was the ending of The Great Hunt that I didn’t see coming. Did I mention it was heart wrenching… and I cannot wait till the sequel?? Left in suspense this book is certainly worth looking into.
To find out more about Wendy and her books, click here!
If you missed Wendy’s interview, check it out here.
For a peek at The Great Hunt, click here!