Hello, readers! Today I am pleased to present my belated review to Emma Clifton's newest novella, Corroded Thorns, the sequel to her novella in the Five Glass Slippers collection.
A fairy godmother—in prison? Madeline can’t remember even being a fairy godmother, let alone doing something bad enough to land her in a cell. When a mysterious lady sends her back to her old village with cryptic instructions and no answers to her many questions, Madeline must find a way to free her father, who has been imprisoned in a tower by a terrible beast.
First banished by his father the king, then cursed by an angry fairy, Prince Darcy will do anything to escape this fate and achieve revenge and power. Just when he thinks his chance has arrived, by some cruel trick of fate a girl from his past returns and once again wreaks havoc on his life. Worse still, he begins to question what he truly desires.
Emma Clifton first came onto my literary radar with her novella, Broken Glass, which I found adorably, ridiculously fun. It left questions unanswered, though: what happens to the sinister younger prince, Darcy? Or Ophelia, who betrayed the rules she had sworn to follow? Corroded Thorns answers these questions.
My overwhelming impression of this novella is adorableness. The characters are adorable. The plot is adorable. The political espionage is adorable, but probably only because the characters are involved. It stars Madeline: a girl with no memories, only a certain sense that she has done something terribly wrong.
At first I thought that Madeline's introduction to interspecies politics would form the greater part of the plot. But nope. The novella was pretty much about Madeline and Darcy.
Don't get me wrong: I love Emma Clifton's couples. She is the queen of adorable couples, and she successfully balanced two-- two!-- of these with the plot in Broken Glass. But in this instance, I think the balance fell slightly away from the plot and landed in a series of secret picnics, stolen glances, and captured hearts. All of these were, as I mentioned, adorable. But this novella felt much less meaty than its predecessor because the romance didn't have the focus of the plot to balance it.
As always, with Emma Clifton, the writing was crisp and direct, with no ambiguity. Even if I preferred Broken Glass, Corroded Thorns is still a worthy sequel. Be sure to follow Emma on Goodreads and her blog.