Parents' Guide to

A Curse So Dark and Lonely: Cursebreaker, Book 1

By Mary Eisenhart, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Modern "Beauty" tale has complex characters, gore, humor.

A Curse So Dark and Lonely: Cursebreaker, Book 1 Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 13+


I absolutely loved this book. Especially for the fact that it had very minimal sexual themes (no sex- besides implication that a character had previously done it with someone, but no description for that, one kiss and some vague thoughts, one side gay character), and focused much more on the amazing fantasy world and the political situation (their magical kingdom is going to war and they have to figure it out). The writing flowed great and I remember hardly any cursing, one drinking scene where two characters get drunk. The characters were really strong and passionate. The violence wasn't too descriptive besides some wounds described and one or two slight torture scenes but it wasn't too bad, might scare younger kids but I'm sensetive and wasn't too disturbed. Lots of themes of sacrifice for love and the good of others above yourself.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
2 people found this helpful.
age 16+

Fractured Fairytale - Beauty and the Beast

I loved the storyline and how descriptive it can be. Although there were parts when I felt frustrated at how each of the character behaved.

This title has:

Educational value
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (2 ):
Kids say (12 ):

Brigid Kemmerer's take on "Beauty and the Beast" brings three intriguing, complex characters and a delicate, mostly successful balance of darkness, gore, magic, humor, snark, and heart. Oh, and horses. There's a lot going on in A Curse So Dark and Lonely, and sometimes the reader's suspension of disbelief gets a bit strained. Like when the heroine, who has a bad leg as the result of cerebral palsy, is able to skillfully ride the fiercest warhorse in the kingdom because she took therapeutic riding before her family fell on hard times. But this is fantasy, right?

And between the hacking, slashing, and sadistic villainy, there's a lot about standing up for your loved ones, being responsible for others, and working together. Also snark, humor, a bit of a love triangle, and characters you want to spend more time with. Good news: There's a sequel in the works.

Book Details

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