RELEASE DAY + REVIEW: THE HUNTED BY BETHANY-KRIS
Title: The Hunted
Series: 9INE Realms
Genre: Dark Fairy Tale Retelling
Release Date: January 6, 2020
After witnessing the murder of his mother by a mermaid, Prince Eryx Bloodhurst of Atlas makes a deal to sedate his need for vengeance: they’ll catch the mermaid who did the deed, but he’ll pay for it with his crown.
Arelle, third princess of the Blu Sea, has never known the true cruelty of the forbidden lands firsthand, but she will soon. The halfling prince with murder in his eyes and the sea’s songs in his blood will make sure of that.
He should kill her.
Perhaps, keeping her might be worse.
Two kingdoms are falling. One king is losing it all and another threatens to ruin everything. The rules of the land and sea are changing. Secrets of the past are spilling.
And all because of a prince and his little mermaid—whether they live or die—nothing in the realm will ever be the same.
In The Hunted, Bethany-Kris opens a new world—the 9INE REALMS—for readers with a dark fairy tale retelling, and pulls inspiration from the cult classic favorite and the Hans Christian Andersen original to redefine what it means to be The Little Mermaid.
The Hunted is the first book I read from author Bethany-Kris and I've thoroughly enjoyed it. This was a dark and very loose retelling of The Little Mermaid, which I personally prefer because it's more interesting this way rather than reading the same story over and over again. The writing style was easy to follow but had enough angst and plot twists to keep me captivated until the end.
In this twisted fairy tale, the heroine is no damsel in distress but a headstrong, resilient and kindhearted princess of the sea and the hero, well... he is charming...wickedly so...but he doesn't seek to save the mysterious mermaid who haunts his dreams but rather to kill her. The book was full-on action, well-paced and had a lot of intrigues. I liked the world-building and the complexity of the characters. Arelle and Eryx start off as enemies but the bond that solidifies between them turns hate into love. The push and pull between them were beautifully presented, all the tension and emotions flew from the pages, and there were some steamy sex scenes that put my imagination in overdrive.
There was obviously a romance building going on but the story was more than that, it depicted a war between humans and merpeople and the cruelty, greed, and viciousness and on both sides. The ending was explosive and heart-gripping, there was so much going on in the last chapter. I loved how things turned out for Arelle and Eryx, I liked them as a couple very much, they were a perfect fit. It was indeed a gritty and captivating story and I'm looking forward to reading more from the author.
ARC was kindly provided for an honest review.
Bethany-Kris is a Canadian author, lover of much, and mother to four young sons, two cats, and three dogs. A small town in Eastern Canada where she was born and raised is where she has always called home. With her boys under her feet, snuggling cats, barking dogs, and a spouse calling over his shoulder, she is nearly always writing something ... when she can find the time.