Wicked Lovely (Wicked Lovely #1) by Melissa Marr
This book was ok, but I wouldn’t call it great. I was a little surprised by that as I was reading it—one of the reason this one was added to my list was because I’d heard great things about it, but I guess that just goes to show how we all have different things that we like and dislike. Or are neutral about.
And to be honest, I mostly felt neutral about this book. It was good; it was well-written and had an interesting and unique premise. I like the world that was created and the concepts of the courts that Marr explored as she wrote this. And I can tell that Marr knows her characters and loves them.
But it just didn’t do anything for me. I can’t say that it fell flat for me, not exactly. This was a good enough read to distract me from my math homework after all (and since all that I had left was my programming homework, that’s slightly more difficult than it sounds).
One of the things that I love about the fae is the sense of something foreign. The fae are a range of emotions, a range of concepts, and have a range of experiences that simply aren’t relate-able for us mere mortals, and I love that about them. As a writer, it gives you plenty of room to develop your own rules and concepts. As a reader, it truly embraces the “escape from reality” that most fantasy readers enjoy so much. Marr kind of had this—she had the nuances of the courts, of the playing with heat and cold, and even addressed the issue of modernity. However, I didn’t feel like I was learning about a different species, moreso than humans with some slightly different rules.
There was something about the way the courts were set up that didn’t sit well with me, either. A large part of it was simply me not understanding what the difference between the Winter Court and Dark Court is supposed to be, and likewise with the Summer and High Courts. It look like the second book in the series might explore more of the other courts, and maybe I’ll come around to it when I read more. Who knows? In addition to that, we know there is a game with rules being played between the Summer and Winter Courts, which I like in concept, but I don’t feel like we ever actually learned why such a game existed and had the rules that it did. It was hinted at, but mostly avoided. If it’s something we learn later, that’s a little more ok, but this book was really the place to at least begin to address it. I still feel left in the dark.
That, and, honestly, I didn’t feel all that invested in the characters. I liked most of them, and I felt pity for others, like Donia, but that was about it. I appropriately routed for Keenan while I was reading, and I felt some small attachment to Aislinn, but I honestly couldn’t tell you much about what they were feeling when. And I didn’t feel like this tough decision Aislinn had to make was a decision that I had to make. I think that would have added a layer to this that I was missing as a reader.