My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Jodi Meadows, and Brodi Ashton
In a very strange turn of events, I ended up loving this book. Why strange, you ask? Because I had basically DNF’d every one of the authors’ books beforehand; no, really, I’m serious. I couldn’t get into Unearthly by Cynthia, couldn’t get into Everneath by Brodi, and was super duper on the fence and oddly weirded out by Incarnate by Jodi. Let’s just say I was more than worried about what I was going to get myself into when I saw all three of their names smushed together on this one book.
However they greatly proved me wrong and the combo of these three authors was lethal. The narration was so seamless and readable that I never could’ve told you that it was written be three different people besides the fact that it told me on the cover. I flew through this in about three days due to the writers’ ability to craft an excellent story.
The story is a remimagining of the true story of Lady Jane Grey. She succeeded King Henry the Eighth’s son – yes, that King Henry with all his millions of wives and chopping of their heads – and was only on the throne for a record 9 days until Queen Elizabeth took over. This story adds in a heavy dose of magic, shapeshifting, and funnies that surely did not happen in real life. It focuses on King Henry’s son, Edward, his cousin, Lady Jane, and her new husband, Gifford – just call him, G, and a crazy few days that ends up Jane on the throne by accident and a lot of shapeshifting hijinks. I really don’t want to reveal too much of the plot, because it’s that good and twisty.
I will say that I was quite leary of this book when it first came out and not just because of my experiences with the previous works. Any book that totes itself the second coming of The Princess Bride, I grow scared. TBP is sacred to me, and when I first started reading, it felt a bit forced, like it was trying wayyyyy too hard. That first little introduction reminded me so much of what Goldman did in his story with all his little asides about how Morgenstern really wrote it and it wasn’t his fault for having it wrote like that. I was very worried they were going to keep that throughout, and it was enough to keep me from buying it when it first came out.
As I kept going, whether it was from my contemporary feels that I had been in or the slowness of adjusting to this fantasy world, I felt it started off a bit slow and I was pretty much going for a four star review. However, right around the part 2 of the book, everything after that was absolute beauty. So much hilarity that I was left in a constant smirk or smile and binge read the entire book. I loved each character and they were all unique in their characterization and personality. The humor was right on and the plot was quite interesting.
A lot of this review was showing my hesitancy for this book; however, the truth is I had no need to worry. Each of the authors have crafted their writing wonderfully since the last time that I have read their work. This book is a lot of fun, and it has become a favorite of mine. If you are looking for a book to fill the inevitable hole that The Princess Bride has left in your heart, this book could do it for you – although nothing will ever compare to that beauty of a book.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this book and even for the parts I was on the fence about, the last parts of it made up for everything. I will definitely be looking out for these authors in the future.Five stars for sure, and this Book Princess decrees that you get your butt out there and read this book!
Check it out: