Book: Crimson Bound by Rosamund Hodge
Published May 2015 by Balzer+Bray|441 pages
Where I Got It: I borrowed the hardcover from the library
Genre: YA Fantasy
When Rachelle was fifteen, she was good—apprenticed to her aunt and in training to protect her village from dark magic. But she was also reckless—straying from the forest path in search of a way to free her world from the threat of eternal darkness. After an illicit meeting goes dreadfully wrong, Rachelle is forced to make a terrible choice that binds her to the very evil she had hoped to defeat.
Three years later, Rachelle has given her life to serving the realm, fighting deadly creatures in an effort to atone. When the king orders her to guard his son Armand—the man she hates most—Rachelle forces Armand to help her hunt for the legendary sword that might save their world. Together, they navigate the opulent world of the courtly elite, where beauty and power reign and no one can be trusted. And as they become unexpected allies, they discover far-reaching conspiracies, hidden magic, and a love that may be their undoing. In a palace built on unbelievable wealth and dangerous secrets, can Rachelle discover the truth and stop the fall of endless night?
Inspired by the classic fairy tale Little Red Riding Hood, Crimson Bound is an exhilarating tale of darkness, love, and redemption.
Crimson Bound is a really interesting take on Little Red Riding Hood, and there are definitely a lot of parallels between Crimson Bound and the story of Little Red Riding Hood that we all know. After reading Cruel Beauty, I was really looking forward to Crimson Bound, which I liked almost as much as Cruel Beauty.
I thought the mystery of the bloodbound and the Devourer was really interesting, but it did get sort of confusing at the end. I definitely had to re-read parts of it to see if would make any more sense, and it sort of did, but not much. Something about the world and the mythology made me think of the His Fair Assassins trilogy by Robin LaFevers, so if you like that series, you might want to check out this book.
It’s also pretty slow for a good chunk of the book, so it takes a while for anything interesting to happen, but I actually didn’t mind the slow pace, because there is a really interesting world we see in the book, and I just wanted to absorb as much of as I could. There are a lot of hints and it seems really vague, so I might have to hunt down a more clear explanation of the mythology and everything with Zisa and Tyr to see if that will make it less confusing. I did really like the description of the Forest, which seemed more metaphysical than anything else.
I didn’t particularly care for the love triangle, mostly because I didn’t feel like there was anything between Rachelle and either love interest. I don’t have any strong feelings towards Armand or Erec, but I really liked Rachelle and how she tried so hard to hold onto her humanity. It is a lot darker than I expected, even for a YA fantasy, but I really liked that about the book, even though it didn’t have the same spark that Cruel Beauty did. There wasn’t as action much as I thought there would be, given the summary, and while I didn’t mind, I think that’s why the book had a slower pace. And like I said earlier, I didn’t mind the slower pace, but a little more action throughout the book would have been nice.
3 stars. I liked it, especially the world and the mythology, but I also wish the mythology was a little less confusing.