Book Review: Heartless

Heartless Book Cover Heartless
Marissa Meyer
Juvenile Fiction
Feiwel & Friends
8th November 2016

Long before she was the terror of Wonderland - the infamous Queen of Hearts - she was just a girl who wanted to fall in love. Catherine may be one of the most desired girls in Wonderland, and a favorite of the yet-unmarried King of Hearts, but her interests lie elsewhere. A talented baker, all she wants is to open a shop with her best friend and supply the Kingdom of Hearts with delectable pastries and confections. But according to her mother, such a goal is unthinkable for the young woman who could be the next Queen . At a royal ball where Cath is expected to receive the king's marriage proposal, she meets Jest, the handsome and mysterious court joker. For the first time, she feels the pull of true attraction. At the risk of offending the King and infuriating her parents, she and Jest enter into an intense, secret courtship. Cath is determined to defineher own destiny and fall in love on her terms. But in a land thriving with magic, madness, and monsters, fate has other plans.

I finished this book in the wee hours of the night. Then I had to sleep on it before writing the review because…well, they say that sleep is imperative to healing and MY POOR LITTLE HEART HAD BEEN BLASTED TO SMITHEREENS. It’s still working on gathering up all the pieces. I literally finished the last half of the book within hours. I AM STILL IN DENIAL HERE PEOPLE. NO. MY FEEEEELLLLSSSS.

First and foremost, a warning. You probably have expectations for this book to:

  1. Rip out your heart
  2. Be totally dark and gruesome the whole way through
  3. Be an awesome Alice in Wonderland retelling

ONLY TWO OF THOSE IS CORRECT. To be precise, number 2 (tee hee, TWO AND 2) is what led me astray as well. The first 3/4 of the book is like the Alice in Wonderland you would expect from Lewis Carroll. Light fluffy, full of nonsense but totally awesome. And I didn’t mind. Although it did make me so terrified because WE ALL KNOW HOW THIS ONE ENDS. I mean, it’s about the Queen of Hearts’s journey to the throne, after all, so there really is only one ending POSSIBLE. BUT STILL.




  • THE TEASING. Marissa Meyer you are a devil. Knowing that the book ends badly made all the parts that made it seem like a happy ending was possible WAS PURE AGONY. I enjoyed those moments IMMENSELY because I am myself hopelessly in love with Jest (SHH DON’T TELL MY BF I SAID THAT. ALSO I KNOW HE’S NOT REAL SHH). But then I had it in the back of my mind that it would never happened and I almost started crying right there. Now, this MAY sound like a bad thing BUT TRUST ME IT ISN’T.
  • Okay. HANDS DOWN JEST IS MY FAVORITE OF ALL TIME. HANDS DOWN. Like, seriously. We meet him within the first couple of chapters of the book, and I had fallen in love with him before Cath ever even spoke to him. I think I was a gonner within the first two lines of the description. JEST IS SERIOUSLY A GOD OMG. CAN WE HAVE MORE JEST PLEASE. Also he is so clever and witty and smart and GAH he is literally EVERYTHING.
  • You get all of the Alice in Wonderland WACKINESS AND THEN SOME. We all need nonsense when we are in Wonderland, and there was a lot of nonsense. My favorite nonsenses were the Pepper Obsessed Cook employed by Duke Warthog (whom he doesn’t fire due to utter loyalty), Lady Mearle’s nonsense ‘moral of the story’s’, also the highly nonsensical romance between those two. Not to mention Cheshire, Jack the Knave (who we are not sure is in love with Cath or really does hate her???). I literally had to laugh out loud because he was so straightforward and ridiculous.


  • The King is IMMENSELY INFURIATING. He is the most annoying and childish character of them all and is a coward to boot. VERY FRUSTRATING. So well done Marissa Meyer, as always.
  • WHAT KIND OF A PERSON WOULD I BE IF I DIDN’T MENTION THE BAKING??? There is so much of it. In fact, it plays a HUGE role in Heartless because it is Cath’s dream to open up a bakery of her own. Plus she can bake literally ANYTHING. And the creations are so beautifully depicted that I got a sweet tooth of my own.*
  • Oh dear this list is going to be long because I ABSOLUTELY ADORE THIS HEART-WRENCHING BOOK. There is a tea party, a not-so-mad hatter, an ever-sleeping Dormouse**, hats that have a bigger influence than you’d think at first glance, and pumpkins that seem to be drawing Mrs. Peter in in more ways than one.
  • ALSO THE JABBERWOCK. No fear, my dearests, there IS MOST CERTAINLY ACTION AND FIGHTING AND STABBING (or rather slicing…) AND BLOOD AND MOST CERTAINLY TEARS. The Jabberwock has a twist to it that you will eventually figure out (Meyer certainly leaves enough clues).
  • A Treacle Well, Three Creepy Sisters, An Impossible Maze and a Warning. Those things are the beginning of the heartbreaking end to this book. YOU WILL NEVER BE THE SAME. AND IT IS GLORIOUS. PAINFUL, BUT GLORIOUS.
*Said sweet tooth may or may not have already been there before….. * makes shifty eyes *
**Talk about envy


  • Honestly the one thing I can truly say was a disappointment, was the expectation that the whole book was going to be stabby and gory. I HAD FALSE EXPECTATIONS OKAY. BUT. I am still utterly in love with this FREAKING GORGEOUS BOOK I MEAN LOOK AT IT.





6 thoughts on “Book Review: Heartless

  1. I’M READING THIS RIGHT NOW WOOOO. I’m like 130 pages in and so much food appreciation omg. It’s like the book was written for me basically. Although yes it needs more stabbing. Like any stabbing tbh. Jest is ADORABLE and mystical and I already love him. I’m hoping Cath starts standing up for herself soon??? And I’m hoping the Jabberwock comes in more and everything explodes and blood and fire. Ya know. Normal stuff. Fingers crossed this lives up to the Splintered trilogy (aka the best trilogy ever) for me. XD

    1. HE IS SO ADORABLE. Like I said he had me within the first two seconds of his introduction. I NEED JEST. He is my current obsession.
      THERE WILL BE BLOOD. Just later. BUT IT’S WORTH THE WAIT. Your little heart will be crushed (is it bad that that makes me smile????)
      I debated reading it so soon after Splintered but really they aren’t even that comparable for me! They both have really different feels BUT I LOVE THEM BOTH!!!

  2. Marissa Meyer does it again, I see? I love it when books get 5 out of 5 and then it’s revealed how painful they actually are. It reminds me of Ron’s prediction “You’re going to suffer, but you’re going to be happy about it.” LOL. But a prequel about the Queen of Hearts with BAKING…I’m besotted already.
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    1. Definitely!! Admittedly I was surprised and a little disappointed by the amount of (or rather lack of) blood and gore (I know what’s wrong with me???) but all in all I was crushed utterly and therefore high praises!!

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