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How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories

(The Folk of the Air #3.5)

4.29  ·  Rating details ·  34,125 ratings  ·  5,791 reviews
An irresistible return to the captivating world of Elfhame.

Once upon a time, there was a boy with a wicked tongue.

Before he was a cruel prince or a wicked king, he was a faerie child with a heart of stone . Revealing a deeper look into the dramatic life of Elfhame’s enigmatic high king, Cardan, his tale includes delicious details of life before The Cruel Prince, an adventu
ebook, 200 pages
Published November 24th 2020 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
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Savannah I think its because Cardan really didnt learn how to deal with his feelings properly. That gives him no excuse for how he treated Jude, but it does ex…moreI think its because Cardan really didnt learn how to deal with his feelings properly. That gives him no excuse for how he treated Jude, but it does explain why he did the things that he did. Due to the abusive nature of his brother and mother, as well as the dismissive behavior of his father, Cardan learned the only way to get their attention was to get in trouble or to piss them off. I think in a way he tried to get not only Judes attention but attention from his friends and family from being an asshole to everyone. Again, that doesnt give him an excuse, but I think it really does add layers to his character cause of the way he changes throughout the trilogy. How he learns to be a good king and a good person in general makes the story have a lot more depth and makes it more realistic for me since a lot of people make mistakes due to how they grow up and try to change their habits that they have had for most of their lives. (less)

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1.) The Cruel Prince ★★★★★
1.5) The Lost Sisters ★★★★★
2.) The Wicked King ★★★★★
3.) The Queen of Nothing ★★★★★

"Hate that was so bright and hot that it was the first thing that truly warmed him."

How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories is an illustrated novella following Cardan Greenbriar, during many different stages in his life, while we slowly see all the different things that shaped him cruelly. The sound that left me when I opened this book and realized we were g
chai ♡
May 20, 2020 marked it as to-read
oh haven't you heard? Holly Black released a sneek peak at Cardan's inner thoughts:

repressed trauma incandescent rage JUDE JUDE JUDE JUDE self-loathing more incandescent rage JUDE JUDE JUDE JUDE JUDE JUDE revenge more repressed trauma must get drunk JUDE JUDE JUDE JUDE JUDE so no head? JUDE JUDE JUDE JUDE JUDE JUDE JUDE how is anyone supposed to do any work around here with this fucking tail JUDE JUDE JUDE JUDE JUDE oh that's right I don't have to do any work haha pass me that bottle of wine JUD
May 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Holly Black brings THIS back:
My gorgeous wicked boy Cardan gets the spotlight (yet again, of course) and - y'all, my heart is s w e a t i n g

5/5 ⭐

This felt exactly like that one (1) book of fairy tales I had when I was little, filled with drawings and old stories about fairies and kings and queens and witches.
It wasn't much, but it was so comforting my weak heart simply couldn't.

Also, I'm so disgustingly in love with Cardan it isn't even funny anymore.

Helena of Eretz ✰

While I loved every page of this, Holly Black also managed to exclude every scene that I wanted to see. 🤦🏻‍♀️ So, I’m going to choose to believe that she’s saving them for another Cardan novella in the future! 😁

Regardless, the faery tale-esque vibe and the beautiful illustrations in this novella made for a very cute and fun read! 🥰
Miranda Reads

Just released my Top 10 Books from 2020 BookTube Video - now that you know this one made the list, click the link to find the rest!

And here's my vlog review of the book!


In short: It was amazing.

In long: Check out my Video Review !

P.s. Holly Black. You are a gift. A national treasure. And I would 110% steal you with Nicolas Cage.

YouTube | Blog | Instagram | Twitter | Facebook | Snapchat @miranda_reads
May 18, 2020 marked it as to-read
update: just a reminder there's just under 3 weeks left until RELEASE DATE!! judecardan stans how WE FEELING?


can't wait to finally recieve my copy of this and open it up to [cardan simping for jude] [cardan simping for jude] [cardan simping for jude]

cardan novella cardan novella cardan novella cardan novella cardan novella cardan novella cardan novella cardan novella cardan novella cardan novella

reaction pictures on Twitter:

Hoes be like: Give me all of JUDECARDAN stories and I like Cardan's tail and I can't get enough of this world!

It is me, I am hoes!
Nov 28, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
charmingly told and stunningly illustrated, this is a wonderful collection of short stories narrating select moments in cardans life before, during, and after the events of the ‘folk of the air’ series.

while i do wish more stories had been included, i love the motion of how each story flows into the next, almost feeling like a novella rather than an anthology. its really effective at building cardans character and expanding upon his development from the series.

fans of the series, cardan, and a
may ➹
May 19, 2020 marked it as to-read
sometimes I think about finishing this series and then I remember Cardan is a furry faerie with a tail
Cardan Greenbriar
cause of severe painful death


Lia Carstairs
  "So long as you're begging," he says.

YES I'm begging for more because THAT WAS TOO SHORT😭😭😭

This book was both everything and nothing at the same time. Everything because um it's Cardan Greenbriar???🥰

Cardan's inner thoughts.

Cardan in the mortal world.

Cardan drinking bubble tea.

Cardan eating dumplings.

Cardan just being Cardan.🥺

(by @noverantale)

But it also felt like nothing because the scenes I actually REALLY wanted to see weren't there.😭

I mean who wants to see Cardan and Nicasia toge
Emily May
Dec 01, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, young-adult, 2020
I'd say this is a must-read for Cardan fans.

I absolutely adored the magical, fairy tale-like quality to this book. It reads almost like a series of short stories, but they are all interconnected and each one unveils details about Cardan's life and background. There's magic and witches and gorgeous illustrations... what's not to like? :)
Mara YA Mood Reader
”Powders were pressed to Cardan’s tongue, and he passed them to Nicasia with a kiss.” 🤭😉

I absolutely adored this illustrated novella!! It brought me back into my favorite world in the realm of Faerie with my most beloved characters of all time!!

I still haven’t found anything that shook me as hard as this series!! All I want is more, more, more!!! Why can’t we find more like this??? 😭

Just look at him here! Cardan is baby and I'm crying!

[image error]

And here!! *screams* He'
May 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
((me: closes final page))

And just like that my faith in this thing we call a world has been restored. Thank you, Holly Black. We needed this.

Unsurprisingly, Cardan had me entirely entranced.

How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories is a collection of beautifully illustrated short-stories, all told from Cardan's perspective. They span from when he was a little boy, all the way through and after, The Queen of Nothing.

I knew going in that this was illustrated, but my goodness, it is absolute
Nov 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
“A heart of stone can still be broken.”
Virginia Ronan ♥ Herondale ♥
May 18, 2020 marked it as to-read
Shelves: faeries
Give me all the Cardan my twisted and wicked faerie heart is longing for! <3
I can't believe Holly Black is blessing us with another book!

I'll never get enough of this world,
I'll never get enough of my kin,
and I'll always love Cardan! Period!

This said I already know who's going to buy this as soon as it's out.
Yes, dear reader, it's me, the faerie next door. ;-P
Mary S. R.
Jun 14, 2020 added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Mary by: Cardan cos he loves himself
When you’re chatting with the Cardan to your Jude and she starts spamming you in revenge ⤵

(GR ruined it, click on image for high quality)


I believe I just had a front row seat to what this book is gonna be like so I don’t think I even need to read it anymore. I don’t want to be spammed you know. What do you say I block her and also build a pillow wall between us at night. Or maybe clip that tail...hmmm...

# WE STAN THE TAIL anyone??

Dear Holly Black,

I need the heavens to open and this bo
Nov 27, 2020 marked it as physical-tbr
Funny how I hate angst until it's Cardan being angsty, and that angst involves him scribbling a certain Jude Duarte's name over and over again while ink drips onto his clothes but he's too busy pining over Jude to care ...more
shre ♡
May 18, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
alright so next novella WHEN? cause....that was NOT ENUFF.


manifesting getting cardan’s perspective when jude was stuck undersea. when he was writing those letters to jude. when he exiled her and throughout her exile. when she held a knife to his throat. all the time he spent pretending to hate her when he never could. when she pretended to be taryn after coming back from exile. when taryn pretended to be her wearing those earrings.
May 18, 2020 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
y'all the good lord blessed us all!!!!!! holly black just saved 2020

C.G. Drews
Being back in Holly Black's Cruel Prince world was absolutely everything I needed right now. I've always said I craved Cardan's perspective for this series. We get slivers of his backstory, his making, so slowly that we are left gloriously starved for it. So being gifted a novella purely from his perspective? A TREAT. We thank the faerie queen so deeply. 😭

This is a novella (I always wish novellas were longer 😪) and it's several stories told by Cardan ranging from when he is small, right up till
May 24, 2020 marked it as to-read
I take a "break" for a couple of days and in the meantime *this* drops, and I totally do not notice and how am I supposed to process this now?

I just don't know what to do with this! I'm not prepared for this.

Jun 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Jude cos she loves me
Our story begins with the Prince, now the King of Elfhame flying over waves as he thinks about the winding path of decisions that brought him here, racing over the sky as he tries to become the hero, instead of the villain. A prince of Faerie who once slept in the hay of the stables listening to the sounds of faerie steeds, of deer and elk, and even the croaks of great riding toads, who listened to the stories of Aslog of the West.

You might think he was the villain ...
You might think he was the
That's heart has officially turned into a stone(Is this a reference to the book?? Hell yeah!)
This book was one of my MOST anticipated book of this year
BUT I FELT NOTHING WHEN I READ THIS!!!! *frustrated noises*

Yeah it was fun trying to see Cardan drink bubble tea and try momos
BUT I think I have read sooo many better headcanons ..that this official headcanon felt meh

I wanted Cardan to go to Mc Donalds and try to compliment the "chef"
That would have been hilarious!!

Also, why the heck were
Mar 01, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I am sad to say that I have finished "The Folk of Air" series. This is one of my favorite series, and now I have to officially, let go of all the characters.

"How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories" was far too short. I need more. This book was perfect. The drawings in this book were amazing. The Judran content was perfect. Reading from Cardan's pov was just everything.

Seeing a drawing of Cardan wearing a hoodie brightened my day. That was random, but okay.

Reading from Caran's point o
• Lindsey Dahling •
All I want is a book where Jude and Cardan flirt, make out, and go to bone town. When does THAT novella come out?

In the meantime, this was very sweet.
Chelsea Humphrey
May 19, 2020 marked it as dnf-lost-interest  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Chelsea by: Candace Robinson
God bless Holly Black and her personal efforts to turn this year around.

May 18, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“You don’t think monster girls and wicked boys deserve love?”


Of course I loved this. How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories is a beautifully written, delicious look into Cardan’s life as a child, a prince, and a king.

Before he was the wicked King of Elfhame, and the cruel, youngest prince of Faerie, Cardan was a mischievous child with a disdain for stories. This gorgeously illustrated novella is a collection of short stories all from Cardan's perspective, weaving together tales from
Okay, how can 2020 be one of the worst years in modern society and at the same time one of the best?


You guys may have an idea of how fucking happy I am that this man had a happy ever after; This book means a lot to me and I'm freaking ready to buy all the freaking editions out t
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Holly Black is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of over thirty fantasy novels for kids and teens. She has been a finalist for an Eisner Award and the Lodestar Award, and the recipient of the Mythopoeic Award, a Nebula, and a Newbery Honor. Her books have been translated into 32 languages worldwide and adapted for film. She currently lives in New England with her husband and son in a house ...more

Other books in the series

The Folk of the Air (3 books)
  • The Cruel Prince (The Folk of the Air, #1)
  • The Wicked King (The Folk of the Air, #2)
  • The Queen of Nothing (The Folk of the Air, #3)

Articles featuring this book

As dedicated readers already know, some of the best and most innovative stories on the shelves come from the constantly evolving realm of...
63 likes · 14 comments
“Having a heart is terrible, but you need one anyway.” 99 likes
“A heart of stone can still be broken.” 79 likes
More quotes…