Release Date: October 1st 2013
Genre: YA Fairy Tale
Source: ARC from Author
Challenge(s): Sequels, Fairy Tale, NetGalley
I approached Hero with low expectations, only because there was no way it could possibly measure up to the genius that is Enchanted. Just goes to show that I don’t know everything, because Hero was equally, if not more compelling and enchanting than Enchanted. Something about Saturday’s story just touched me in a way that Enchanted wasn’t able to, and that made my experience reading this book even more powerful.
Saturday herself was an amazing character. The contrast between her and Sunday is enormous, and not just in height. I have to admit I didn’t pay much attention to Saturday in Enchanted, and now I’m wanting to go back because she is such an interesting character. She’s the oddball of the family, with her strength and lack of magical ability, but she doesn’t let that stop her.
Gender roles are challenged, but in a very skillful manner. Saturday doesn’t worry about settling down. She has adventures to embark on! She's independent and doesn’t spend her time worrying about boys, which is something we need with the weak, bland heroines that are all over YA.*glares at Twilight* That being said, there is still romance fully present in the story, but it isn’t the focal point of the novel. And more than the actual romance, time is spent focusing on the companionship between the two, which made their more romantic moments that much more genuine.
And now to the meat of the novel: the plot! I absolutely loved it. Right off the bat there’s a ton of excitement in the air. And that’s just the start! Sometimes it seemed like there was maybe even too much happening at once, but then things would calm down for just a moment so we as readers could sort things out and catch a breath before the next adventure. It takes skill to create such a powerful, exhilarating, and beautiful novel, and for that I applaud Alethea!
Despite the lack of a basis in any one particular fairy tale, the whole feeling of the novel was that which lies in the dusty fairy tale collection you grew up with; a mixture of familiarity and knowing to expect the unexpected as you embark on an all new journey. It’s a feeling that never gets old.