Welcome to my stop on the The Court of Miracles book tour! Thank you to Fantastic Flying Book Club for organizing the tour and allowing me to participate as a tour host!
ABOUT THE BOOK
Title: The Court of Miracles (The Court of Miracles #1)
Author: Kester Grant
Release: June 2, 2020
Publisher: Knopf Children’s
Genre: YA Fantasy
In the violent urban jungle of an alternate 1828 Paris, the French Revolution has failed and the city is divided between merciless royalty and nine underworld criminal guilds, known as the Court of Miracles. Eponine (Nina) Thénardier is a talented cat burglar and member of the Thieves Guild. Nina’s life is midnight robberies, avoiding her father’s fists, and watching over her naïve adopted sister, Cosette (Ettie). When Ettie attracts the eye of the Tiger–the ruthless lord of the Guild of Flesh–Nina is caught in a desperate race to keep the younger girl safe. Her vow takes her from the city’s dark underbelly to the glittering court of Louis XVII. And it also forces Nina to make a terrible choice–protect Ettie and set off a brutal war between the guilds, or forever lose her sister to the Tiger.
ARC provided by Random House Children’s through NetGalley.
The Court of Miracles is a loose Les Miserables retelling centered around Eponine “Nina” Thénardier, a young thief in the criminal underground of an alternative Paris following the French Revolution. It’s described as being for fans of “anyone who knows Eponine deserved so much more” so basically this book was marketed directly at me.
The Court of Miracles is a reimagining of Les Mis meets The Jungle Book. If you’re like me, this probably sounds both strange and hard to manage, but Kester Grant knocked it out of the park. It was easy to see the influences of both classics while reading, and yet the story maintained its own uniqueness and identity to stand apart from being simply a retelling.
Eponine is my absolute favorite character in Les Mis so I was thrilled to read a story centered around her. Her progression as a character throughout the story was thoroughly fascinating. She goes from a naive, girl to a clever, passionate young woman who will stop at nothing to save those she loves.
Although I loved the characters and the plot, there were a couple things that I think detracted from the overall story. The book has quite a few time jumps, which were very confusing. A few times they occurred directly in the middle of action which I think did the book a disservice. I also had an issue with the three different love interests for Nina. There was a lot of telling instead of showing to the readers which made some of the romance aspects feel contrived and unbelievable since the tension and build-up of affection is told to us, instead of being shown through Nina’s thoughts/actions.
The Court of Miracles deftly combines the elements of two classics, Les Miserables and The Jungle Book to create a smart, riveting story. I was definitely impressed by Kester Grant’s ability and look forward to seeing where Nina’s journey takes her next.
★ ★ ★ ½
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kester Grant is a British-Mauritian writer of color. She was born in London, grew up between the UK, Democratic Republic of Congo, and the tropical island paradise of Mauritius. As a wanton nomad she and her husband are unsure which country they currently reside in but they can generally be found surrounded by their fiendish pack of cats and dogs.
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