Of Curses and Kisses by Sandhya Menon

Of Curses and Kisses (St. Rosetta’s Academy #1) by Sandhya Menon
Publisher/Year: Simon Pulse, 2020
Format: ARC – paperback
Pages: 361
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐


Will the princess save the beast?

For Princess Jaya Rao, nothing is more important than family. When the loathsome Emerson clan steps up their centuries-old feud to target Jaya’s little sister, nothing will keep Jaya from exacting her revenge. Then Jaya finds out she’ll be attending the same elite boarding school as Grey Emerson, and it feels like the opportunity of a lifetime. She knows what she must do: make Grey fall in love with her and then break his heart. But much to Jaya’s annoyance, Grey’s brooding demeanor and lupine blue eyes have drawn her in. There’s simply no way she and her sworn enemy could find their fairy-tale ending…Right?

His Lordship, Grey Emerson, is a misanthrope. Thanks to an ancient curse by a Rao matriarch, Grey knows he’s doomed once he turns eighteen. Sequestered away in the mountains at St. Rosetta’s International Academy, he’s lived an isolated experience–until Jaya Rao bursts into his life. Sparkling and elegant, Jaya’s unlike anyone Grey has ever met. Still, he can’t shake the feeling that she’s hiding something. Something that might just have to do with the rose-shaped ruby pendant around her neck…

As the stars conspire to keep them apart, Jaya and Grey grapple with questions of love, loyalty, and whether it’s possible to write your own happy ending.

What I thought

Thank you to Goodreads and Simon Pulse for the free ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review!

Reader friends, the type of review I’m about to write is my absolute least favorite to write. The “it’s not you, it’s me” review.

I want to stress–this was a good book, and I think many young adult readers will enjoy this. And I did like it, I just didn’t love it like I had hoped. I appreciated the nods to Beauty and the Beast, and my favorite part of this story was Grey. I am all about angsty male leads, and he had my heart melting more than once! I do love a good slow burn romance.

It’s just…I think I am too big a fan of Beauty and the Beast to view this even remotely objectively. I went into this with BIG expectations. And it truly was a fresh take on the original tale, unlike many that I’ve read. I loved the boarding school setting, I guess I was just expecting it to be a bit more magical and a bit less contemporary. Again, I think this just comes down to my own personal bias.

Like I said before, I think plenty of readers will enjoy this one. And while I didn’t love this one, I did like it enough to want to continue with the series. I am genuinely curious to see where Sandhya Menon takes these characters next, I think I will just need to adjust my expectations.

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