Author: Elana K. Arnold
Genre: NA Fantasy
Trigger warnings!! This book contains subjects like psychological and sexual abuse
The rite has existed for as long as anyone can remember: when the prince-who-will-be-king comes of age, he must venture out into the gray lands, slay a fierce dragon, and rescue a damsel to be his bride. This is the way things have always been.Goodreads Synopsis
When Ama wakes in the arms of Prince Emory, however, she knows none of this. She has no memory of what came before she was captured by the dragon, or what horrors she has faced in its lair. She knows only this handsome prince, the story he tells of her rescue, and her destiny to sit on the throne beside him. Ama comes with Emory back to the kingdom of Harding, hailed as the new princess, welcomed to the court.
However, as soon as her first night falls, she begins to realise that not all is as it seems, that there is more to the legends of the dragons and the damsels than anyone knows–and that the greatest threats to her life may not be behind her, but here, in front of her.
I picked up this book not knowing what to expect, and I thought that the first part of the book was exciting, fun and a bit bizarre. Which I loved and thought this was going to be a fun read. But then things started to shift towards a much darker place, and it sometimes made me so uncomfortable and nauseated I actually gaged.. There are so many interactions between characters that are just not ok in any way. But I could not, and neither did I wan’t to put it down.
Ama when we meet her is nothing. No memories or really strong personal features. She’s pure in a way a baby animal is pure. Curious and acts on instincts. But she observes and thinks about what she sees and does not stop questioning her surroundings about how and why things are in a certain way. This does not go well for her, and as she tries to adapt she grows in so many ways.
My first real impression of the Prince Emory was ”What an ass-hat!”, and then I laughed. But my humorous attitude towards him did not last.
Medieval fairytale world where dragons needs to be slain and Damsels rescued. A modern girl’s nightmare. Keep smiling, be pretty and do what you can to please your man. If you dare to have an opinion, you will be punished.
This review is a bit on the short side and not as in depth as I would have liked it to be. But it was very hard for me to write this because every detail of the story and characters can be a potential spoiler.
This is a very twisted and dark fairytale with a strong feminist message. And I loved every uncomfortable, nauseating and rage-provoking word of it. Except for the end. I felt that it was too swift and left some things a bit unclear. An epilogue would have been nice, but not really necessary to the message of the book all in all.
After a few days I’ve decided to give Damsel 4 stars. I really liked the book, but some details was a bit obvious to me and the ending lacked something to give me a scene of closure after reading it.