Wicked Lovely series, Book Three
Publication date: April 21, 2009
Tags: YA, fantasy, fairies, love triangle
You would think that once the malevolent Winter Queen Beira’s reign was destroyed and the Summer King, Keenan, was restored to full power when he found his Summer Queen, Aislinn, that the this alternative faerie world, located in Philadelphia, would be peaceful again. But it’s not. The monarchs of all three faery courts have changed hands, and former friendships (Niall, Keenan’s former advisor, now the king of the Dark Court) and flames (Donia, the new Winter Queen) will become enemies to be wary of.
Meanwhile, in between adjusting to being a faery and learning her duties as Summer Queen, Aislinn struggles to find balance between Keenan—her king, her partner, her friend, to whom she experiences an undeniable attraction—and Seth, her wonderful mortal boyfriend. Seth is frustrated that his mortality hinders his ability to protect Aislinn from faery threats. With a hint from Bananach, the dangerously insane faery of Chaos and War, Seth goes to Sorcha, the faery queen of Reason, in order to be changed into a faery, so that he and Aislinn may stay together forever and equally.
What none of them except Bananach know, however, is that every one of their actions takes them all a step closer to a war that could destroy everything they knew…
If you thought the world of faerie couldn’t get more dangerously sexy and alluring than Melissa Marr’s first book, Wicked Lovely, well, you’re wrong. Fragile Eternity focuses mostly on the characters’ relationships with one another. And what brilliantly hot and tension-filled ones they are! Lengthy conversations between Keenan and Aislinn, Keenan and Donia—okay, Keenan and anyone—should come with a “sexual tension!” warning/preview. Melissa Marr definitely writes wonderfully complex characters who are stuck in situations that have no easy solutions.
The writing of Fragile Eternity is fantastic: lyrical, magical, completely befitting the ideas it wants to express. This is poetry in motion, beauty in black and white. (And this is not mentioning the gorgeous cover that this book is graced with.)
When I read Wicked Lovely I thought it was a decently written urban fantasy novel but nothing special. That’s why I was so surprised at how much better I thought Fragile Eternity was. Parts of the story are still frustrating to me—despite how well drawn the characters are and how good the writing is, I still can’t seem to fully connect with them—but I have no doubt that fans of Wicked Lovely will run out to buy this one. The ending, while rather anticlimactic after so much buildup over 300+ pages, promises a possibly even more exciting and tension-filled sequel. This may not be a hands-down favorite fantasy series of mine, but the love triangle and Melissa’s beautiful writing are enough to keep me reading, and far less picky fantasy lovers will passionately declare their ardour for Marr’s faerie world.
Overall Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Cover discussion: 5 out of 5 - Yes! Yes! THIS is how a cover should look like! I'm absolutely enamored by the balance of warm and cool colors. Love how only the butterfly is strikingly in focus, while the rest of the cover blurs into the background. It may not be entirely relevant to the story, but I'm nevertheless tempted to buy this book, if just so I can gaze adoringly at the cover. Oh dear, I'm making a fool of myself. Moving on.