Book Review – A Heart So Fierce and Broken by Brigid Kemmerer


Title: A Heart So Fierce and Broken (Cursebreakers #2)

Author: Brigid Kemmerer

Publisher: Bloomsbury YA

Publication date: January 7th, 2020

450 pages

3/5 stars

Goodreads Synopsis

Find the heir, win the crown.

The curse is finally broken, but Prince Rhen of Emberfall faces darker troubles still. Rumors circulate that he is not the true heir and that forbidden magic has been unleashed in Emberfall. Although Rhen has Harper by his side, his guardsman Grey is missing, leaving more questions than answers.

Win the crown, save the kingdom.

Rumored to be the heir, Grey has been on the run since he destroyed Lilith. He has no desire to challenge Rhen–until Karis Luran once again threatens to take Emberfall by force. Her own daughter Lia Mara sees the flaws in her mother’s violent plan, but can she convince Grey to stand against Rhen, even for the good of Emberfall?

The heart-pounding, compulsively readable saga continues as loyalties are tested and new love blooms in a kingdom on the brink of war.

In the sequel to New York Times bestselling A Curse So Dark and Lonely, Brigid Kemmerer returns to the world of Emberfall in a lush fantasy where friends become foes and love blooms in the darkest of places.


“Ah yes, the most dangerous person at the party is always the girl sitting alone with a book.”

Brigid Kemmerer, A Heart So Fierce and Broken

Well, you may want to read my original review of A Curse So Dark and Lonely before continuing to read this review. I don’t plan on writing spoilers, but I have strong feelings about this book and they might come out no matter how careful I try to be.

So, I loved Curse. I loved Rhen, Harper, and Grey. They were a fantastic trio and Curse was an amazing Beauty and the Beast retelling. I feel Curse could’ve been a standalone, and after reading this book – wish it had been left as a standalone.

My main issue with Heart is the character change that happened with Rhen and Harper, specifically. The friendship and camaraderie that was fostered in the first book seemed to go out the window during Heart. The strong, female character that Harper was presented as fizzled out and she turned into the meek, in love female character who can’t see flaws in their partner. It just doesn’t make sense for the characters based on their portrayal in Curse.

Still, I liked Grey’s character and the addition of Lia Mara as a character. I was prepared to dislike her, but she did in fact win me over. I even liked the side characters of her family, though they were seen as the ‘villains’. I seriously loved Isaak and the addition of the new magical character. AND on the topic of magic I respect the addition of magic to the story’s overall plot line – however, I would have loved more explanation and world-building around it.

Basically, I have super mixed feelings about this book. I love the overall world, the characters and how they interact, and the additions made – but I take serious issue with some actions the characters took that didn’t jive with their arcs. I’m interested to see where the next book takes the series, but am nervous that I will continue to feel the same way about the characters.

Happy reading, folks!

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