Happy Saturday everyone! I hope you have all had a good week 🙂 Today I wanted to share with you Rosamund Hodge‘s newest book Crimson Bound. Recently I’ve really gotten into the retelling’s of old favorites and this is a VERY LOOSE retelling of Red Riding Hood. If you like dark and twisted check it out! It was fantastic 😀
I received this book via Edelweiss. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of this review.Crimson Bound by Rosamund Hodge
Published by Balzar + Bray on 2015-05-05
Length: 448 pages
When Rachelle was fifteen she was good—apprenticed to her aunt and in training to protect her village from dark magic. But she was also reckless— straying from the forest path in search of a way to free her world from the threat of eternal darkness. After an illicit meeting goes dreadfully wrong, Rachelle is forced to make a terrible choice that binds her to the very evil she had hoped to defeat.
Three years later, Rachelle has given her life to serving the realm, fighting deadly creatures in an effort to atone. When the king orders her to guard his son Armand—the man she hates most—Rachelle forces Armand to help her find the legendary sword that might save their world. As the two become unexpected allies, they uncover far-reaching conspiracies, hidden magic, and a love that may be their undoing. In a palace built on unbelievable wealth and dangerous secrets, can Rachelle discover the truth and stop the fall of endless night?
Inspired by the classic fairy tale Little Red Riding Hood, Crimson Bound is an exhilarating tale of darkness, love, and redemption.
(This is a standalone novel, not part of the Cruel Beauty Universe.)
Crimson Bound by Rosamund Hodge is a dark and twisted retelling of the classic Red Riding Hood, a VERY LOOSE retelling 😉 Rachelle was only 15 when her life was changed forever by a chance meeting with a dark and forbidden magic in the forest. Now she serves the king as one of his royal bloodbound hunting others like her and protecting the kingdom from the dark forest. When she is assigned to protect the king’s son Armand, she finds herself in a position to stop the ancient evil that is coming if she’s brave enough to face it.
Rachelle is a hard character to like, but she does have some redeeming qualities which I loved. First off when I say this story is a loose retelling of the classic, I mean it. About the only thing in common between Red Riding Hood and Rachelle is their cloak and how they are tricked by the “wolf.” Rachelle is sassy, quick-witted, and extremely curious, which gets her into all kinds of trouble. But she also has her own values, lines she won’t cross, and she’s devoted to saving the kingdom for her own fate.
Armand is the handsome, illegitimate son of the king, who has been elevated to Saint-status in the kingdom after he met a bloodbound and lived to tell the tale. He lost both hands, but he lived. He’s arrogant, HATES all bloodbound, and seems to think of himself as a Saint. At least Rachelle believes all these things. Turns out he’s a decent guy and I can tell you from reading the story that he’s quite a bit more than he seems 😉
So this whole bloodbound stuff….yeah it’s the heart of the story. In a nutshell, there’s these evil fairy/canine/vampiric creatures living in the forest. Once you are marked by one of them you have three days to kill. If you kill someone you live and the mark turns blood red, hence bloodbound. Rachelle hates what she has become and is determined to stop this mythical creature from rising again to throw the world in darkness. It’s her mission and what she devotes herself too after she becomes a bloodbound. In fact it’s why she became a bloodbound to find out how to stop it.
There’s only one problem. She needs a mythical sword and an heir to the king to find it. It’s kind of like fate when she’s assigned to Armand. Their dynamic is very odd. At times you can feel the sexual tension and attraction rolling off the pages, at other times the suspense of them trying NOT to kill each other. It’s a very tenuous relationship AND it helps to move the story quickly.
Romance is not a main theme of the book. No instead the main theme is a strong female lead coming in to conquer a dark evil. It’s haunting and horrific at times and it will give you nightmares….at least it did me! Overall I loved every word. Rosamund Hodge knows how to weave a fantastic tale and leave the reader wanting more. If you’ve read Cruel Beauty, this is not set in the same universe but does have the same feel. If you enjoy dark fantasy, fairy tales, and a little romance, I highly recommend this one.