All her life, nineteen-year-old Liesl has heard tales of the beautiful, mysterious Goblin King. He is the Lord of Mischief, the Ruler Underground, and the muse around which her music is composed. Yet, as Liesl helps shoulder the burden of running her family’s inn, her dreams of composition and childish fancies about the Goblin King must be set aside in favor of more practical concerns.But when her sister Käthe is taken by the goblins, Liesl journeys to their realm to rescue her sister and return her to the world above. The Goblin King agrees to let Käthe go—for a price. The life of a maiden must be given to the land, in accordance with the old laws. A life for a life, he says. Without sacrifice, nothing good can grow. Without death, there can be no rebirth. In exchange for her sister’s freedom, Liesl offers her hand in marriage to the Goblin King. He accepts.
Down in the Underground, Liesl discovers that the Goblin King still inspires her—musically, physically, emotionally. Yet even as her talent blossoms, Liesl’s life is slowly fading away, the price she paid for becoming the Goblin King’s bride. As the two of them grow closer, they must learn just what it is they are each willing to sacrifice: her life, her music, or the end of the world
DNF 1 Star
Spoilers and Rant mode time
I tried so hard to finish this but I couldn’t.
I thought after I got halfway through it would get better which it did but then it just fell through for me.
I went through the MC whining about her being plain and not desired by anyone, her being jealous of her sister being a “woman” but sort of slut shaming her and her being jealous brother musical talent which was borderline obsession cause she was kind of using him for her own musical ambitions since she was the composer, her not being on good terms with her dad and being label as the forgotten sister to her talented brother and her being hot and cold with the goblin king. ( which was the only saving grace of this book)
Four things that broke it for me which the author did cause I feel like it was problematic.
1. The author created all this sexual tension between Goblin King and the MC ( I’m not going to try and spell it. ) with them having heavy make outs ,touching, and them both saying they want each other and couldn’t even follow through properly. Meaning that you didn’t follow through with sex being implied or fade into black if you didn’t want to go into full detail. ( But hell She was 19 and you teetering on the edge of New Adult in the first place with the sexual tension so in all honesty…but I digress. The whole YA/NA is a discussion for another time.) Your readers shouldn’t have to play the guessing game when it comes to something as important as that.
2. The author choosing to have her MC bleed as a way to saying that she’s not a virgin anymore and it being the only proof that they did have sex. How many freaking books and fanfics are going to use this tried stereotypical trope?? That it has been proven by science that if the vagina is properly lubricated that the female will not bleed? That bleeding is not a indication of a woman being a virgin? So why it’s still being used? ?? WHY?? All she could have said was her being sore and that’s it.
3. The fact the MC finally feels like she stepped into womanhood by giving herself to the goblin king and now finally being able to give herself to the music fully even though the Goblin King has tried so hard for her to open up to her musical side without going to that route yet. That he went through all those unethical things in order for her to become his bride( like kidnapping her sister) so he can awaken her musical side which he know she had hidden inside her since she was a kid. . Are you kidding me? Are you mean to tell me that now since she’s not a virgin anymore that she can finally compose music like she should? What the hell?? It’s just plays on the stereotype that sex is a rite into womanhood which shouldn’t be the case at all. I mean what are you telling your young teenage female readers who are reading this?? What message are you sending?? Especially to your readers who maybe coming to turns with themselves as being asexual……
4. The fact the MC kept insisting the Goblin King to have sex with her and he constantly told her no. It got so cringe worthy to be that I honestly thought that she was going to rape him. So also threw a temper tantrum because of it. Now if this was flipped the other way that the MC was telling him no and he kept insisting they have sex I wonder how many five stars it will would have??*sips tea*
If those four things didn’t happen, this book was looking at least a 2.5 or 3 stars for me cause it did keep my interest to that point even tho I wanted to hit the MC so many times. Also the fact this is the second book I read this month that I couldn’t stand with older sister/young sister dynamic.With the older sister have to save the younger sister from herself. (cough caraval) Being a little sister myself, I can’t stand how younger sisters are always being portrayed as being wild and free.. While the older sister is being portrayed as being jealous of the younger sister. Not all little sisters or Old/Younger sisters dynamic is like that and it’s a trope that needs to be squashed. I can tell you that my sister is the most supportive people I have and she more carefree than I am. Hell she have tell me multiple times that I need to stop being so hard of myself cause I’m far from being carefree and wild.
It’s a few other things that got me which was the ” You not like other girls” line from a side character which is very stereotypical and the repetitive writing. I keep saying that you shouldn’t play down to your audience. That you don’t have to constantly remind them of certain things.
The only saving grace of this book was the Goblin King even if some of his methods was problematic at best.. He still an interesting character up to that point.
But after that I can’t finish it and I wasted two days listening to this.
So another one bites the dust.
One more thing. I saw that Renee Ahdieh rated it five stars I’m like ” You wrote a better romance and fade into black scene than that with Wrath and the Dawn!” smh
Would I recommend?