There are some nitpicky things I could bring up
, (a big one being the oh-so-convenient "parental abandonment
"), but I didn't feel like anything I could mention would really have impacted my total enjoyment of this book.
I actually thought that this was the first book by Black I've read, but apparently I forgot about [b:White Cat|6087756|White Cat (Curse Workers, #1)|Holly Black|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1358274572s/6087756.jpg|6264661] and her graphic novel series, which I suppose isn't a good thing ...
I really want to commend Black on being able to write stand-alone
young adult novels. I honestly don't need everything to be a trilogy or long-ass series. So kudos to her for that. I see she has another, [b:The Coldest Girl in Coldtown|12813630|The Coldest Girl in Coldtown|Holly Black|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1367312471s/12813630.jpg|17962903], that I want to check out purely for the fact that it's not part of a series.
One of the things I think a lot of people are applauding is the fact that there's a gay character, a (maybe?) bisexual character, and African American characters (actually from African as there's a part when they mention Yoruban ancestry). Almost none of this felt forced, either. I say almost
because I thought the (maybe?) bisexual character was a bit convenient, I don't know why there had to be a supposed love triangle at all, honestly. The town and its mixture of different types of people was really believable though, aside from the adults being bigots and absolutely no help in times of danger ...
The story was also quite original, and although the whole "girl power" thing has been done to death, I liked the twists Black worked into the narrative. Some of them were actually surprising and quite clever. The one problem with this not being a series though is that a lot of character development is shoved to the side to make way for the plot.
The main character gets a huge spotlight shone on her while the others fade a bit into the background.I like stories about the fae that delve into the lore as much as possible while also creating something new and exciting, and I think Black does a great job adding her own flavor to these myths and legends.