Coiled by H.L. Burke
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
On a private scale of internal squees, Coiled would rate somewhere between 4.5 - 5 stars. On the cosmic scale of books I have read, I'd put Coiled at 4 stars. Which is just a grand way of saying that it hit a lot of sweet spots, I liked it very, very much, but it's not the greatest book I've ever read. (And is also a fancy way of saying it falls into the category of books-I-won't-admit-to-liking-this-much because of literary pretentions.)
Two sets of twins from neighbouring countries are cursed. As they come of age, they're pitted against each other, as curing one would permanently curse the other. Soon it becomes a race--which twin will win? And what will happen to the one that loses out? Coiled is basically a fairy tale/myth with gods and half-gods, curses and magic, and a quest. Well, more than one quest. They are personal quests to break personal curses, but that doesn't make them any less valid. There's a lot of personal vendetta and family squabbling and guilty secrets.
The... thing... between Princess Laidra and Prince Calen is tooth-achingly, diabetes-inducingly sweet, and has the added advantage of being old-fashioned and gentlemanly and will-he-won't-he-WHATAREYOUWAITINGFORPRINCE, which is what I love in a good guilty-secret read, which usually involves princes and princesses, because I don't read romance [ahem]. It IS, however, clean YA, and while there are certain--allusions? Fade to blacks? Almosts?--hints of impropriety (to come and hoped for), it mainly stays in the teenage royal fantasy plane.
It's the sort of book my teenage self would have read over and over and over again. Now, I just read it, sigh, and go back to real life.
The serpent on the cover is also very cute.
Note: I received an e-galley via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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