The Treachery of Beautiful Things by Ruth Long
A darkly compelling mix of romance, fairy tale, and suspense from a new voice in teen fiction
The trees swallowed her brother whole, and Jenny was there to see it. Now seventeen, she revisits the woods where Tom was taken, resolving to say good-bye at last. Instead, she’s lured into the trees, where she finds strange and dangerous creatures who seem to consider her the threat. Among them is Jack, mercurial and magnetic, with secrets of his own. Determined to find her brother, with or without Jack’s help, Jenny struggles to navigate a faerie world where stunning beauty masks some of the most treacherous evils, and she’s faced with a choice between salvation or sacrifice–and not just her own.
A fairy tale, vividly told and painfully sweet.
The Treachery of Beautiful Things took a few chapters to suck me in but one it did I was hooked. I attribute this to the very descriptive writing style. While it paints the scene so well, I personally have a bad habit of getting inpatient sand weaning to skim ahead to juicer parts. So depending on the readers tastes that definitely could work for or against the story.
Jenny is a young girl about to start college, but she returns to a forested area in her home town where she witnessed her brother get abducted by the trees and a Greenman seven years earlier. After years of ridicule from claiming the trees kidnapped her brother and lots of therapy she has come back to say goodbye and let go of her brother Tom.
Tom had been a young musical prodigy. The night he was taken he was playing his flute for her as they walked home through the woods. She hears this same melody being played today in the woods and dashes off into the trees swearing to herself it must be him.
So her adventure begins when she finds herself in the Realm of the fae and meets Jack o’ the Forest and Puck!
Honestly, I didn’t expect the story that I got. I was pleasantly surprised when the points of view went back and forth from Jenny and Jack. I love reading from different view points. I felt Jack was brought to life wonderfully, fighting an impossible internal battle, he was a perfect tragic character, that I couldn’t help loving. Now, Jenny could have used a bit more fleshing out in the character development and progression department but ultimately both characters captured my concern and interest.
My favorite part about The Treachery of Beautiful Things was that it ended up being a love story but completely without being a romance! I adore how the author was able to pull that off. I can’t stand overly sappy YA romance, with instant love, and oodles of teenage hormonal angst. This had none of that for me. The relationship was built and slowly strengthened the entire book, until it was something you could really believe meant something to both of them.
It was action, adventure, heartache, discovery, mystery, dark fairytale, and love story all rolled into one nice quick read!
Tabitha the Pabkins
*Review Copy provided by Publisher for an honest review. All opinions expressed are my own. Please note there are affiliate links in this post, we thank you for your support.