…The Great Hunt reimagines the Brothers Grimm fairy tale “The Singing Bone” in a dramatic, romance-filled fantasy with rugged hunters, romantic tension, and a princess willing to risk all to save her kingdom.
When a monstrous beast attacks in Eurona, desperate measures must be taken. The king sends a proclamation to the best and bravest hunters: whoever kills the creature will win the hand of his daughter Princess Aerity. The princess recognizes her duty but cannot bear the idea of marrying a stranger—she was meant to marry for love—until a brooding local hunter, Paxton Seabolt, catches her attention. And while there’s no denying the fiery chemistry between them, Princess Aerity feels that Paxton’s mysteriousness is foreboding, maybe even dangerous.
Paxton is not the marrying type. Nor does he care much for spoiled royals and their arcane laws. He is determined to keep his focus on the task at hand—ridding the kingdom of the beast—but the princess continues to surprise him, and the secrets he’s buried begin to surface against his wishes.
I have never read “The Singing Bone” but now I think I might want to. The Great Hunt did not go the way I expected…but who doesn’t love a princess and hunter story?!
The king in this story bucked tradition and married for love. He valued the ability to do so and gave his children that gift until a monster starts terrorizing the kingdom.
Attempt after attempt to kill the beast is thwarted by his massive size and strength. As a last ditch effort to defeat him the king offers his daughter’s hand in marriage to hunters of other countries. I think this is risky since she will be queen and who knows who will end up as the king.
There are magic people called the lashed, When they use magic they get marks on their nails like lashes. They can only do magic through their hands. Years before a lashed attempted to take over, killing many in the process, but in failing to do so he made the non-magic people weary of the lashed.
The lashed were forbidden to use their magic and highly discriminated against.
Paxton and his younger brother are locals who join the hunt. Naturally, they are good looking, but Paxton has no interest in the prize. He is grumpy and standoffish. All he wants is for the beast to be killed and everyone safe. He doesn’t expect the princess to keep coming around him when he tries so hard to push her away.
Paxton has his reasons for keeping everyone at arm’s length and throughout the story, more of his past is revealed.
The whole royal family seems to get along and genuinely like each other. I can’t think of another story where that was the case. The queen was a part of a traveling company when she met the king and so she and the kids know how to do trapeze. That is odd as well.
Imagine having to marry someone you do not know and did not choose. Considering the divorce rate, people suck at picking people for themselves, so having someone forced on them probably wouldn’t be better, but who knows. Aerity seems to accept it as best she can while thinking of her kingdom but she struggles with it as anyone would.
The hunters are comprised of a few locals and several hunters from other countries, including a Lord. I don’t know if I can say this book has a love triangle as the couples like each other but with all of the males in competition for the one princess, it becomes very awkward when she knows they have feelings for someone else in her family.
I enjoyed this book a lot. I listened to it instead of reading and I think I prefer seeing the words especially with the unusual names. It sometimes took me a minute to figure out who they were talking about. There is no cussing that I can remember and no sex. As they are hunting a beast there is some violence. The townspeople (no maj’s) are fearful and discriminate against the lashed. Unfortunately, that is on the morning news so it isn’t uncommon.
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I went to Goodreads to update it with this review and noticed some negative reviews for The Great Hunt. One said Aerity was the weakest female lead and the other complained about it being romancy.
I don’t know how you can read the blurb and not expect it to be about romance. It also never says she goes off and hunts the beast herself. Giving up her choice of husband was her way of fighting the beast.
Would it be awesome if she went all Merida and tried to win her own hand in marriage? Yes!! I still have hope for that in the second book.
But if you know what your reading you shouldn’t be surprised by things like romance 😘