February 18, 2019

YA Book Review: A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer

A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer
Genre: Fantasy Retelling
Length: 496 pages
Publisher: Bloomsbury YA
Source: The library, but I will be purchasing my own copy.
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository
My Rating:
Goodreads Synopsis: Fall in love, break the curse. It once seemed so easy to Prince Rhen, the heir to Emberfall. Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year over and over, he knew he could be saved if a girl fell for him. But that was before he learned that at the end of each autumn, he would turn into a vicious beast hell-bent on destruction. That was before he destroyed his castle, his family, and every last shred of hope. Nothing has ever been easy for Harper Lacy. With her father long gone, her mother dying, and her brother barely holding their family together while constantly underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy, she learned to be tough enough to survive. But when she tries to save someone else on the streets of Washington, DC, she's instead somehow sucked into Rhen's cursed world. Break the curse, save the kingdom. A prince? A monster? A curse? Harper doesn't know where she is or what to believe. But as she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land, she begins to understand what's at stake. And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm, his hope comes flooding back. But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall . . . and it will take more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin.

My Review

Review in a Tweet: A Curse so Dark and Lonely is both enchanting and dark, this Beauty and the Beast retelling is as unique as they come. A slow-burn romance, a cursed castle, and a kick-ass heroine make this book unforgettable. You will want to read it in one day.

Opening Lines: "There is blood under my fingernails. I wonder how many of my people I've killed this time."

Do I have a new favorite Beauty and the Beast retelling? You bet your ass I do. This book blew me away. Once I started it I just couldn't put it down. This is your warning to make sure you choose a good time to read this book, not right before having to go to work. Kemmerer does an amazing job at creating the magical fantasy world of Emberfall that exists alongside our real world. The descriptions of the cursed castle made it easy for me immerse myself into this story. While some of this story is dark, other times it is full of light.

A Curse So Dark and Lonely is told in dual POVs from Prince Rhen of Emberfall and Harper of Washington, DC. Prince Rhen is cursed and his people are suffering. Harper has her own troubles and was not expecting to be kidnapped and brought to a magical kingdom. These two characters' slow-burn romance was incredibly painful and yet wonderfully beautiful to read. They are both different and compliment each other perfectly. I absolutely love that Harper doesn't just accept that she has been taken from her life and can't leave, she fights back. She is a fighter while Rhen is so over the curse he has basically thrown in the towel. Harper is strong, doesn't give up, and also admits when she is wrong. She is just so freaking awesome, and gives Rhen hope. You will want to meet her.

Although on the longer side, there is always something going on in this magical story so the reader will never be bored. The plot doesn't just feature a romance, but a friendship, family, a mystery, a monster, and a kingdom falling to ruin. I don't want to go into too many more details so you can discover them on your own.

The Bottom Line: If I haven't convinced you to read this book yet, I don't know what will. Read it! If you like fairy tale retellings, slow-burn romances, or mysterious fantasy novels, you will love A Curse So Dark and Lonely.

If you liked A Curse So Dark & Lonely try:


  1. Wow Kay, that opening line really grabs you. This sounds deliciously dark!

  2. I'm so happy to see your 5 star rating for this book. I just picked up a copy last week and can't wait to read it!


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