*I received a digital copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review*
Summary: There is a rule amongst his kind: A jester doesn’t lie.
In the kingdom of Whimtany, Poet is renowned. He’s young and pretty, a lover of men and women. He performs for the court, kisses like a scoundrel, and mocks with a silver tongue.
Yet allow him this: It’s only the most cunning, most manipulative soul who can play the fool. For Poet guards a secret. One the Crown would shackle him for. One that he’ll risk everything to protect.
Alas, it will take more than clever words to deceive Princess Briar. Convinced that he’s juggling lies as well as verse, this righteous nuisance of a girl is determined to expose him.
But not all falsehoods are fiendish. Poet’s secret is delicate, binding the jester to the princess in an unlikely alliance . . . and kindling a breathless attraction, as alluring as it is forbidden.
*Mature YA: sexual content and language. Intended for readers 17 and older*
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult, New Adult
My thoughts: This is fantastical tale about a jester named Poet who is known for his skill in seduction that could enamor both males and females with a simple smile thrown their way. But he has a secret that controls his actions, forcing him to be careful as he wins over the most powerful Royals in Whimtany. His life is smooth running and full of extravagant parties and dances until he comes across Princess Briar. An immediate rivalry brews between them because of their contrasting personalities that clash the moment they speak. But as events unfold, can Poet and Briar work together towards a common goal while also unraveling their secrets to each other until they pass the point of no return.
I absolutely adored this novel. Words cannot describe how beautifully written this story was, making it feel as though I was reading an old fairy tale with the poetic language that was used. This story was so unique with the world building, especially with the fact that women are just as powerful as the male leaders in the kingdom. It was so refreshing to read about powerful female characters ruling their lands without the need of a man at their side. This incredible story was also open with same-sex relationships discussed frequently in this novel, giving it the representation it truly deserved without it being criticized by other characters. Every aspect of this story from the dialogue to the plot twists to the slow burning romance between Poet and Briar won me over and gripped my heart, leaving me wanting more once I finished the story.
Poet was such an alluring character who was so fun to read about because of his internal monologue and dialogue that was written poetically. His history that unfolded was so interesting, especially the secret he had kept hidden for majority of the book that I successfully predicted and yet was still blown away when it was revealed. His relationship with Briar was so precious with the subtle hints that they were falling for each other and the support they gave each other throughout the novel. I loved how they worked together to try and change the lifestyles of the kingdoms that were so close minded for so many years. Their love was so heartwarming and dear to me that it kept me reading late into the night just to see what was going to happen next.
This story is one of my favorite books of 2015. It was so captivating and addictive to read. I dove straight into the story and never wanted it to end. It had such an important message to it and had so much representation for minority groups that were represented flawlessly in this book. I could never properly express my love for this book, but I do know that I will recommend it to everyone who reads because it is such an unforgettable story.