Dark and Daring: The Wicked King by Holly Black Review

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Overall Enjoyment: 4/5

Characterization: 5/5

World building: 4/5

Diversity: 2.5/5

My Personal Summary:

“You can take a thing when no one’s looking. But defending it, even with all the advantage on your side, is no easy task.”

Jude is clever. She managed to trick her way into power and now she must learn to keep it. That’s no easy task when Jude has a sullen king, a scheming court, and a betrayal that threatens to tear her apart. Jude will be tested and she can only hope to come out in one piece.


I’ve been waiting for it since I first finished The Cruel Prince and I wasn’t disappointed. The Wicked Prince is a dark and daring read that slithers off the page and pulls you into a world full of faerie intrigue.

First, Jude, Cardan, and company are back! These characters jump out of the page. We learn more about Jude and who she is and what she’s willing to do and endure for what she sees as her advantage. Carden, oh Carden. We learn more about him too. He becomes a lot more developed in this book in my opinion. You get to see a bit more about why he is the way he is. Now, put Jude and Carden together and oh my goodness. I normally don’t enjoy the I kinda hate you, but I also kinda love you thing, but Holly Black is a master and I loved every minute of it. The characterization of these characters even the more minor ones is superbly done. This is everything I want in a story.

Second, the world. The only thing that stopped me from giving this a 5/5 is honestly the fact that this is urban fantasy and there’s not a huge new system of life being created. Holly Black does a phenomenal job of creating a faerie world with it’s own customs and rules. It’s so detailed that I can easily imagine it and this time we have a bit of the undersea as well.

Finally, diversity. I wouldn’t say this is a very diverse book. Jude is a strong female lead which is nice and we have some minor characters who are faeries of color, but in general relatively weak. If you squint really hard Locke or Carden might be bisexual.

Overall, I highly enjoyed this book and the ending was the icing on a wonderful cake. Black always gets me with her endings. Be prepared my friends. I love it as much as it makes me want to scream. I would definitely recommend it. You can check it out here.

Have you read The Wicked King? Is it on your TBR? What did you think of it?

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