Rating: 4 stars
What if Sleeping Beauty didn’t want to marry the prince? That’s the premise of “A Wicked Thing” by Rhiannon Thomas. When the prince wakes Aurora with a light kiss, it doesn’t lead to happy-ever-after. Not at all. Aurora’s new beginning is realizing that her family and everyone (and everything) she knew is dead — long dead.
In fact, what Aurora finds is a kingdom (her kingdom, 100 years later) laid to waste. A kingdom at the mercy of a tyrant, and a queen and a prince who are powerless. Aurora finds that she, too, is powerless to right the wrongs that are being perpetrated throughout the country. But Aurora isn’t afraid to try to change that which needs to be changed, and she proves that in the end.
Thomas creates multidimensional characters for the most part. With the exception of the king — who is evil through and through — the other characters are not all good or evil. The queen is controlling, but Aurora sees the helpless woman behind the crown. And the prince, Aurora’s betrothed, is kind and good — but he, like the others, is powerless to thwart the king.
The king and the kingdom have been counting on Aurora saving everything. The magic has disappeared and so has the witch who cursed Sleeping Beauty 100 years previously. When Aurora finds that she has magic, she must decide who to trust and what path to take.
This book will be a sure hit with young adult readers who love fractured fairy tales. This is certainly not a happy-ever-after story, but we won’t know what the ending is until the end of the series.
Please note: This review is based on the final hardcover book provided by the publisher, HarperTeen, for review purposes.