• Selena | Beauty's Library

Malice Review

I found it enjoyable but seeing the similarity in the storyline to Sea Witch did dampen its uniqueness for me.


Rating: 3/5

Once upon a time, there was a wicked fairy who, in an act of vengeance, cursed a line of princesses to die. A curse that could only be broken by true love’s kiss.


You’ve heard this before, haven’t you? The handsome prince. The happily-ever-after.


Utter nonsense.


Let me tell you, no one in Briar actually cares about what happens to its princesses. Not the way they care about their jewels and elaborate parties and charm-granting elixirs. I thought I didn’t care, either.


Until I met her.


Princess Aurora. The last heir to Briar’s throne. Kind. Gracious. The future queen her realm needs. One who isn’t bothered that I am Alyce, the Dark Grace, abhorred and feared for the mysterious dark magic that runs in my veins. Humiliated and shamed by the same nobles who pay me to bottle hexes and then brand me a monster. Aurora says I should be proud of my gifts. That she . . . cares for me. Even though it was a power like mine that was responsible for her curse.


But with less than a year until that curse will kill her, any future I might see with Aurora is swiftly disintegrating—and she can’t stand to kiss yet another insipid prince. I want to help her. If my power began her curse, perhaps it’s what can lift it. Perhaps, together, we could forge a new world.


Nonsense again.


Because we all know how this story ends, don’t we? Aurora is the beautiful princess. And I—


I am the villain.

This was picked to be my August book pick for my #EnchantedReadsBookClub. I’m so glad I finally got to read this one. It was a fun book to read and discuss.


I have so many thoughts on this one. I found this to be a unique retelling of Sleeping Beauty, but at the same time I didn’t find the general storyline unique. About halfway through I was vaguely reminded of Sarah Hennings’ Sea Witch. If you’ve read one or both, you might know what I mean.


About halfway through I was vaguely reminded of Sarah Hennings’ Sea Witch.

Between both, I found the general storyline to be very similar. We see a retelling set in the point of view of the villain before they were a villain, so we get to see the creation of a villain. Other similarities being how the town they live in despises them and treats them horribly. I even found the ending to be similar in terms of how our main characters ended up. As well as both of these are duologies and by how the first books have ended, the sequels appear to be maybe closer to the original tales in regards to what might happen next.


I will say depending on the reason that got you interested in Malice, you might have different expectations for this book. And that might lead you to be disappointed in this one. If you were interested in the romance aspect, especially the LGBTQ+ romance of it, you might be disappointed. I found the romance to be very low scale and out of the way, I was even surprised by how little romance was involved.


I will say depending on the reason that got you interested in Malice, you might have different expectations for this book.

But I was actually okay with it because I was more interested in the fantasy aspect, I wanted to see this version of Maleficent and seeing the world building around it. And this book definitely delivered on that. I really enjoyed seeing the different fictional bloodlines and the world building involving aspects and details from the original tale of Sleeping Beauty. We even got to meet a version of Aurora’s three fairies.


Overall, I really did enjoy this retelling of Sleeping Beauty. I found it enjoyable but seeing the similarity in the storyline to Sea Witch did dampen its uniqueness for me. However, I am still interested to see what happens next and definitely plan on reading the sequel. But as I mentioned if you’re interested solely in the romance you might be disappointed. The fantasy aspect is on point though!