Review: Stolen Songbird by Danielle L. Jensen
For those who have loved Seraphina and Graceling comes another truly fabulous fantasy...For five centuries, a witch’s curse has bound the trolls to their city beneath the ruins of Forsaken Mountain. Time enough for their dark and nefarious magic to fade from human memory and into myth. But a prophesy has been spoken of a union with the power to set the trolls free, and when Cécile de Troyes is kidnapped and taken beneath the mountain, she learns there is far more to the myth of the trolls than she could have imagined.Cécile has only one thing on her mind after she is brought to Trollus: escape. Only the trolls are clever, fast, and inhumanly strong. She will have to bide her time, wait for the perfect opportunity.But something unexpected happens while she’s waiting – she begins to fall for the enigmatic troll prince to whom she has been bonded and married. She begins to make friends. And she begins to see that she may be the only hope for the half-bloods – part troll, part human creatures who are slaves to the full-blooded trolls. There is a rebellion brewing. And her prince, Tristan, the future king, is its secret leader.As Cécile becomes involved in the intricate political games of Trollus, she becomes more than a farmer’s daughter. She becomes a princess, the hope of a people, and a witch with magic powerful enough to change Trollus forever.
ARC from NetGalley
The abduction of Cecile was, perhaps, inspired or at least reminiscent of the tale of Hades and Persephone. Close enough since Trollus is somewhat in a dark place, a cavernous cavern under the mountain that is waiting to crush the inhabitants to bits. But as I was reading the first chapters, all I could think about was Stockholm Syndrome because I knew in the end, Cecile would fall in love with the prince, Tristan. How could I not when you describe some if not most of the trolls have some deformity but the prince was described as most ultimate, crushable YA boys are described: beautiful. The thing I liked about their romance was it was NOT instalove *throws confetti* although by how Tristan acted in the beginning, I would've hit him sooner. I love their romance. Slow-burning, developed naturally from distrust to mutual goals to there's something there then realization I care for her/him to love.
Cecile is not a Mary Sue. She makes mistakes and learn from them. And thank goodness she went out of her way to find out for herself what it is she's fighting for and not just sit, stand and wander about the place and letting others shape her destiny. I love that.
Aside from the Stockholm Syndrome part, I liked the book. It is the first in a series (Not again! The waiting for the next book! The waiting!), so exposition, explanation and world building were given priority. Awesome world building though while slow progress in some parts was forgivable. I even forgot about the prophecy that was supposed to be the reason for all the things that happened to Cecile. I guess the next book would shed more light on this and why Cecile is able to do magic.