ARC received through Netgalley. This review is not biased in any way. There was no money, gifts, discounts, or favors exchanged for this review.
First of all, look at the Goodreads average rating- around 4.05 stars . Whenever this happens, I’m immediately wary of what would probably make me on of the few people to hate the book. Why? Probably because I’m a horrible person.
Now look at the cover. This is the part where I know I’m not going to like the book. It’s a girl in a dress, which is the cover basically all of YA fantasy. And most YA fantasy gets repetitive after a while, and I just get bored of it . Therefore, this is a book that I wouldn’t love, right?
Wrong. And I’m never wrong on things like this.
The thing that made me really like Stolen Songbird is that certain aspects of YA fiction that I hate are gone, such as:
-Instantaneous love between the two protagonists the very second they ever see each other
-A plot disappearing the very second that there is a semblance of sense to it
-A boring main character
-A setting that’s almost nonexistent
-A creepy hero that just knows that the main character loves him
Cecile, as you can probably tell from the title, sings. She’s really good at it, and was even going to go sing at an opera. However, one day, she was kidnapped and taken to Trollus, which, again, as you can tell by the name, is full of trolls. Actual trolls, not internet trolls, fortunately. And, of course, she’s their only hope. This is the point in every other Young Adult book where any other main character pulls on some special power hidden in her past and wins at everything.
Cecile is a little more realistic. She’s actually horrible at whatever she was supposed to do. Well, not horrible, but she doesn’t win at everything. She just sorts of… doesn’t succeed? At all?
Tristan’s the troll prince that she was supposed to marry and save everyone with, and he’s- wait. Did I forget to mention him? Yes, I’m quite horrible at this, aren’t I? Anyways, what I forgot to say was that Cecile was supposed to do this weird marriage thing with Tristan and save the world and stuff. Only it’s not as unlikeable as my one sentence makes it seem. Just read the book. You’ll understand what I’m talking about.
Anyways, Tristan’s actually why I didn’t round this book up to five stars. I just didn’t like him. At all. And there were all these reasons of why he acted the way he did (aka, being a horrible human being living thing to Cecile), but you see: I. Just. Don’t. Care. It makes me petty, but you already knew I was. Basically, Tristan was the typical YA love interest, just with a reason. That reason- and this isn’t a spoiler because it’s in the actual summary so don’t kill me because of this- is that he’s a leader of a rebellion. And he’s protecting Cecile from being killed by acting horrible with all these bad reasons and such.
Unfortunately, since this is a young adult book, there is a small love triangle. I thought that Stolen Songbird was going to be ruined, which is what happens with a lot of books, but fortunately, the love triangle doesn’t take precedence over the plot, which is awesome.
The bottom line of this incoherent review is that you should definitely read the book and not be skeptical like me.