Review of A Heart So Fierce and Broken by Brigid Kemmerer

Disclaimer: This review contains SPOILERS!!

Let me begin by saying that I absolutely ADORED A Curse So Dark and Lonely. I read it in a day and it gave me the biggest book hangover. As I sit here I can’t think of anything I disliked. So naturally I was eager to get my hands on A Heart So Fierce and Broken, and had high expectations for it. Unfortunately, they were not met, and when I finished I was left frustrated and unfulfilled.

The book picks up right where we left off: Grey is in hiding, Rhen is dealing with challenges in his kingdom (and is also worried about Grey), and Harper is doing her best to support Rhen as the pseudo-Princess of Disi.

My first issue with this book was the POV chapter choice. We have been following Rhen and Harper, and I personally have grown quite fond of them. I was looking forward to seeing how their relationship develops and how they move past the INSANE ending in ACSDAL. Instead of a Rhen/Harper story, we shift to following Grey and a new character, Lia Mara, daughter of Karis Luran, aka Rhen’s enemy.

That was a big disappointment. Grey and Lia Mara, in my opinion, were too similar to hold the main character positions. Their relationship felt more convenient than passionate, and was a bit boring. After the intense love triangle in ACSDAL I was surprised that Grey and Lia Mara had such little chemistry.

When we finally do get back to the conflicts surrounding Grey/Rhen/Harper, we are given characters that are barely recognizable as the ones we fell in love with. The characters have all shifted a complete 180 and I really didn’t care for it. Here is a quick list of specific things that were frustrating:

-Grey not telling Rhen they were brothers. Once he was caught and brought back to the castle, his silence only caused more harm.  

-Rhen torturing Grey because he is withholding information. He goes straight to torturing his most trusted companion rather than talking to him? Trying to come to an understanding?

-Harper’s silence through all of it. I’m to believe that Harper didn’t lock them in a room until they got over it?

-Grey declaring war on Rhen. If he doesn’t want the crown why is he going to war? If he did want the crown why doesn’t he just announce himself as the rightful heir?

-Rhen choosing Lilith over Grey. If the whole reason Rhen was scared of Grey is because he was scared of the magic he possessed (i.e. PTSD from what Lilith did to him), why would Rhen choose Lilith as his ally?

I am still optimistic about A Vow So Bold and Deadly. Although there were several things that frustrated me about AHSFAB, the writing was fantastic. I also think there is plenty of wiggle room to save the series. Maybe all of these character changes serve a greater purpose that will soon be revealed. I have to hope!

3.5/5 Stars

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