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Cruel Beauty (Cruel Beauty Universe #1)

3.76  ·  Rating Details  ·  38,473 Ratings  ·  6,400 Reviews
Graceling meets Beauty and the Beast in this sweeping fantasy about one girl's journey to fulfill her destiny and the monster who gets in her way-by stealing her heart.

Based on the classic fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, Cruel Beauty is a dazzling love story about our deepest desires and their power to change our destiny.

Since birth, Nyx has been betrothed to the evil rul
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published January 28th 2014 by Balzer + Bray (first published January 1st 2014)
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Jen Ignifex is described in the book as extremely attractive despite his cat-like red eyes. He has high cheekbones, a strong jawline, and he has long…moreIgnifex is described in the book as extremely attractive despite his cat-like red eyes. He has high cheekbones, a strong jawline, and he has long black hair. It's not a typical "Beauty and the Beast"-esque story. He's beautiful, but beastly in the sense that he is a "bad" man. (less)
Faith Stark
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Emily May
May 17, 2015 Emily May rated it it was amazing
Well, I thought this was wonderful.

What is Cruel Beauty?

• It's a gorgeously written blend of Beauty and the Beast retelling and Greek mythology.
• It's at once a powerful, wonderful, heart-breaking love story and so so much more than that.
• It's a dark tale that stabs you in the heart at every turn and constantly throws all new levels of craziness into the mix.
• And it's the latest addition to my favourite YA of all time shelf.

Cruel Beauty shouldn't work. But somehow it does. It managed to have m

Goddamn it. I wanted to like this one. Hell, I expected to like this one. Sadly, I did not like this one. I almost don’t even have the energy to review it because I’m just so fucking disappointed that I want to forget about it and pretend it never happened.

So here you go. One lazy ass review:

Nyx is a sacrifice. Her asshole of a father made a deal with a demon to beget children on her mother. Like every other deal EVER made with a bad guy, it blows up in his face. His wife suffers the consequenc
Kat Kennedy
I don’t know if Cruel Beauty truly deserved five stars on merit but goddamnit I’m awarding it all the points for enjoyability. All of them. I loved the hell out of this story. The passion. The intrigue. Ignifex. Nyx’s rage. Ignifex. All the kissing. Nyx.

This book kind of had it all for me. Plot, mystery, intrigue and a whole lot of making out. It’s almost like Hodge was trying to distract me from the crazy plotholes and loose story structure. It was fantastic! I haven’t been this entertained by
Khanh (the Grinch)
If one of us had to die, it ought to be the one with poison in her heart.
Actual rating: 3.5

Maybe it's just me, but I've rarely encountered a Beauty and the Beast retelling that I haven't loved. Ok, except Beastly. That abomination was just horrible all the way around. And let's not even mention the movie. Some people just have the kind of face that just begs for an encounter with my fist, and pretty boy Pettyfer is one of them. But I digress.

This was a very enjoyable read, though not without
For one moment, I felt like a river running down to his ocean.

i feel like i need to drop a few lines here about what, precisely, i felt was lacking in this story. i so rarely throw down a fewer-than-three-stars rating on here, i figure an explanation may be helpful. i'm not going to go into too much plot-detail, since there are a bazillion reviews of this book already on here - i just want to have a record of my own reaction, for the day when some stranger asks me WHYYYYYYYYYYYY i didn't like th
Whitney Atkinson
Jul 15, 2015 Whitney Atkinson rated it it was ok
I loved the first 100 pages of this book so much that i was 99% sure it'd be a 4 or 5 star book. I loved the writing and the main character's sass, and the "Dark Lord" or whatever his title is was REALLY interesting. But holy moly, this book does a 180. It starts out strong but turns into trash. HORRID instalove, obnoxious and confusing love triangle (??????), and I was completely baffled by the world/magic system. I'm not sure if it's because I listened to it on audio, but i am SO confused by e ...more
Steph Sinclair
I have to give the narrator, Elizabeth Knowelden,some credit here. She tried. She really, really tried to salvage this book by giving the main character tons of personality, but not even she could change the source material. The fact is that Cruel Beauty made absolutely no damn sense.

How does the magic work? I dunno.

Who are the real bad guys? I dunno.

Wait, what's the SECRET. Well, I dunno because Nyx learns it and then FORGETS it on the next page to conveniently keep the plot rolling. Awesome.

Let me say it now: Cruel Beauty is one fantastic, gorgeously written, spectacularly dark debut. Many of its aspects may not appeal to some readers, and I understand that; although I really loved how the romance in Cruel Beauty and the "love triangle" (note the quotation marks--don't run off) played out, I do understand why some other readers, a handful of my friends amongst them, take issue with much of this novel.

But honestly, it's been over a week since I've finished Cruel Beauty, and I have
I realize that this book doesn't come out for quite a while, but as soon as it downloaded on my Kindle, I started reading it right away, and once I'd finished it, there was no holding back the feels.

This book is amazering.

It's half:

And another half:

And considering Beauty and the Beast is one of my favorite Disney movies/fairy tales and the Cupid and Psyche myth is probably my favorite in the entire Greek mythology canon...

This book has some of the coolest worldbuilding I've seen in a YA novel. O
Simona Bartolotta

"Why wasn’t my hatred simple anymore?"

I'm going to start this review doing a thing I usually find useless and infuriating, but which I am nonetheless sure every reader does, at least from time to time: a comparison. And a random enough comparison at that.
Not that many days ago I finished another ya novel that all of you probably know, and that is Angelfall by Susan Ee. You see, I thought I needed to mention it because of this curious question that popped up in my mind as soon as I turned th
Feb 05, 2014 Tatiana rated it really liked it
Recommended to Tatiana by: Emily May
3.5 stars

This book, I would have preferred to read written for adults. It is mostly a romance, with a lot of talk of virginity, ravishing, tearing off dresses, etc. But because it's YA, despite being quite sensuous, it doesn't go further than kissing. Too bad really, I don't come across many good adult romances, and setup of "Cruel Beauty" is perfect for creating all kinds of convenient excuses to facilitate sexy times.

I enjoyed mythology/fairy tale mix as well, although I got lost a little in
Feb 11, 2016 Samantha rated it liked it
Shelves: on-my-shelf
3.5 stars. Everyone was telling me I would hate this book, and I did not! While it did have its faults, I enjoyed what it was trying to do and the general theme, even if the execution failed at times. It is a Beauty and the Beast/Hades & Persephone hybrid with some folklore mixed in. I cannot hate it.

A review to come when I've fully collected my thoughts!
Lola  Reviewer

4 ''Wow, that was some story!'' stars

Why haven’t I read this book sooner? *Ashamed of herself*

First of all, I do not agree with the average rating of 3.80/5 stars on Goodreads. At all. It actually happens pretty rarely that I don’t, but I definitely think that Cruel Beauty deserves a higher one and also much more attention. Much more.

Cruel Beauty made me reconsider many things I thought I knew about myself regarding books. For example, I don’t like slow-paced books. Is this a book with slow-pac
Destini Mia~ ♕ Sassy Lassie
Dec 08, 2015 Destini Mia~ ♕ Sassy Lassie rated it really liked it

I found a rose garden under a glass dome; the roses formed a labyrinth in which I always got lost . . .

Since birth, Nyx has been betrothed to the evil ruler of her kingdom-all because of a foolish bargain struck by her father. And since birth, she has been in training to kill him.

With no choice but to fulfill her duty, Nyx resents her family for never trying to save her and hates herself for wanting to escape her fate. Still, on her seventeenth birthday, Nyx abandons everything she's ever kno
Jun 05, 2015 April rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2015
Joel (Throne of books)
Jun 22, 2016 Joel (Throne of books) rated it really liked it
Why did no one make me read this earlier? it was so good. The writing was just astounding. From the very first sentence I was captivated. I haven't the slightest clue as to how to review this properly so just know I loved this. It was beautiful. Nyx was the best main character ever honestly. So savage. Straight up throwing things and hitting Ignifex every 3 seconds and later on telling him she still might kill him after admitting she 'might' love him too. If that isn't me I don't know what is. I ...more
Laura Marcela ✎・:*:・ |spoilers af|

La Bella y La Bestia se mezcla con Cumbres Borrascosas y Barba Azul en una tragedia Griega.

Sinopsis: Nuestra heroina (?) es hija de un poderoso hombre de la región y son constantemente victimas de los ataques de demonios. Nyx tiene una hermana gemela llamada Astraia y junto a su padre, ellas también viven con su tía por parte de madre.
Todo va bien, ¿no? Bueno, no. Resulta que, desde que Nyx nació, fue prometida al Gentle Lord, el príncipe de todos los demonios, el infame señor de los tratos y
Pavlina loves Dex ❤❤

Cruel Beauty is such a beautiful book!! I was really excited to read it because it's a retelling of Beauty and the Beast! So when I saw it was in low price on Amazon I bought it immediately!! I devoured it from the first page!! It was so captivating that I didn't want to put it down!! And one of the things that I loved even more in this book, is that there's Greek mythology in it! So as a Greek reader I find it interesting, because I knew about them!! This book has everyth
Honest to god, I don't know why I'm kidding myself about this book. I'm probably not fooling any of you. I'm never going to finish it, because what I read was terrible and what I read was over half of it, and it was so bad that even though I'd gotten entrenched that far into it I still couldn't force myself to turn another solitary page.

What this book wants you to know:

1. Nothing

This book will not impact your life in any way. And I mean any way: it won't even entertain you. It's like the eleven
Feb 20, 2014 Regan rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-owned-read
This book really surprised me.

When I was first reading this book I was not really digging it, I thought I had a handle on where the story was going, and therefore I thought it was too predictable. However, this story did not follow the stereotypical path that I thought it would. I still guessed the ending halfway in, but I enjoyed the ride nonetheless. The amount of predictability that may or may not be present in this book is not the important part, no, the important part is the story. The sto
Stacia (the 2010 club)
Don't look at the shadows too long, or a demon might look back.

4.5 stars. Words - lovely, haunting, beautiful words.
"That's what makes you my favorite." He reached up and wiped a tear off my cheek with his thumb. "Every wicked bit of you."

Words - dark, scary, ominous words.
You were sent here to die.

Words - damning, horrific, perilous words.
I am the plaything of a demon.

Words - funny, bantering, entertaining words.
"I hope you aren't planning to order me back to bed."
"No, you hav
Sep 16, 2013 Katy rated it it was amazing
So the first part of the "Graceling meets Beauty and the Beast in this sweeping fantasy" is a bit of a stretch, but who the heck cares. It was beautiful. It was amazing. And it was absolutely wonderful. (Sorry, I couldn't resist.)

If you think this is your typical adaptation of the classic fairytale, think again. "Cruel Beauty" is a beautifully written masterpiece that tells the amazing tale of duty, love and betrayal, where Hodge has managed to weave in the concepts of ancient kingdoms and haunt
“Is he scared of the dark?”
“Like all monsters. Because it reminds him of what he truly is.”

I still recall the last mythology book I read. I prefer not to. I mean who would not want to erase the boring journey of Hades searching for his right wife? (If you have not guessed, I’m talking about The Goddess Test)

Cruel Beauty was able to substantiate to me that (Greek) mythology can be interesting in YA fiction, if handled correctly.

It composed of everything I pursue for in a book: unpredictable
Jul 13, 2013 Ashley rated it it was ok
Shelves: arc
Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge - I wasn't born to be saved

Nose Graze — Young Adult book reviews


That's how I feel about Cruel Beauty .

For starters, I think that Cruel Beauty was just nothing like I expected. Almost right away it becomes clear that there's a huge connection to Greek mythology, and while I normally love Greek mythology, I just didn't click with it at all in Cruel Beauty . Maybe it's because I didn't expect it so I wasn't prepared, or maybe it actually didn't work within the book; I'm not sure. But I honestly thought it was a littl
Wendy Darling
Lovely, if occasionally confusing. Loved the complexity of Nyx's relationships with her family, as well as her prickly defensiveness. This might have been even more interesting as an NA novel, I think, since marriage and seduction are such a central part of the story, but can't be explored quite as thoroughly as you could for an older audience.

Really enjoyed this, though. I listened the audiobook, and the narrator Elizabeth Knowelden has a beautiful voice and a style that is perfect for this sto
Jan 05, 2014 Giselle rated it liked it
Shelves: ebook, arc, fantasy, mythology
Cruel Beauty is really confusing, even kind of a mess at first, but eventually the story does paint a gorgeous, dangerous picture. Still, much of it is quite mind-boggling. I've been mulling over what I read for days.

Retellings are always difficult for me, especially that I wasn't big in fairy tales as a child. I'm kind of discovering them inside retellings, actually, so they can be a hit or miss. Cruel Beauty falls in-between for me. I did love the Beauty and the Beast angle, all while bringin
Beauty and the Beast retelling. One of my favorites fairy tales was a story about young girl who gets to be offered to Beast by her father in exchange for a rose. If you think about this story, it is one of the weirdest fairy tales - I remember Jean Cocteau movie adaptation.

Beautiful and dark. This is not a typical young adult fantasy or paranormal romance. There is nothing light or fluffy as that cartoon adaptation some of us watched as kids. Cruel Beauty is different kind of story. Nyx is not

This book...holy crap, this book. I wasn't expecting such a fantastic read. I don't know what I was expecting exactly, but let me just say this was beyond wonderful. This is a re-telling of Beauty and The Beast but...and this is a big but--it was very loosely based on that lovely fairytale. I think both Nyx and The Gentle Lord shared the beauty and the horror exclusively held by the beast in the real story. This wasn't just about a young woman raised to reclaim her countr
Jillian (bookishandnerdy)
hmmm i'm conflicted about this. i REALLY liked the atmosphere of this book and the writing. i also thought the characters were really fascinating, but i wish there was more development. the plot was really confusing and so was the world building. by the end of it, i finally understood it, and i was really flying through the last 75ish pages but it shouldn't have taken that long. overall, i liked it, but the execution of the plot was lacking and hard to follow.
Jul 21, 2015 Chantal rated it really liked it
Cruel Beauty was honestly such a pleasant surprise. I read A Court of Thorns and Roses a while ago and did not enjoy it. I thought it was a sorry excuse for a Beauty and the Beast retelling. Then, many people started recommending this book to me and although the ratings weren’t as high as for the books I usually read, I decided to it pick up. I went into it knowing nothing in terms of plot and came out having my faith in fairy tale retellings restored (particularly BatB).

The concept for Cruel Be
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I love mythology, Hello Kitty, and T. S. Eliot. I write YA fantasy that draws on two of those things. My next novel is BRIGHT SMOKE, COLD FIRE (09/16), the first in a two-volume series about Romeo and Juliet and necromancers.

Goodreads policies: I do read messages. I seldom friend people. I never comment on reviews of my own work.
More about Rosamund Hodge...

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“Where you go, I shall go; where you die, I shall die, and there will I be buried.” 373 likes
“They said that love was terrifying and tender, wild and sweet, and none of it made any sense.
But now I knew that every mad word was true.”
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