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Parents' Guide to


By Mandie Caroll, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

Fierce woman leads reimagined, violent Arthurian tale.

Cursed Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

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Is It Any Good?

Our review:
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Kids say (2 ):

With an exciting author-illustrator team, this highly anticipated book has some bright spots but fails to live up to the hype. The writing in Cursed is smooth and the action is well paced, so it's a decently entertaining read. An Arthurian retelling with a female lead is a fresh take that appeals to a wide audience. Nimue is the best developed character, but the Sword of Power has a dark influence on her, and it seems many of her choices are not hers alone. Other characters mostly fail to come alive on the page. Vaguely medieval but poorly defined world-building feels incomplete. Gaps in the story and perspective shifts between characters can feel disorienting. The romance between Arthur and Nimue lacks true chemistry. Excessive violence may turn off more sensitive readers.

The inclusion of illustrations in a young adult novel makes for a richer reading experience, but several of Miller's black-and-white illustrations are a challenge to decipher. The full-color art is striking, but some cause confusion. Nimue looks black in one, with curly hair, brown eyes, and dark skin, but is drawn with straight, light hair and skin in others. Critiques aside, readers will be pulled along in the story, and may genuinely enjoy this illustrated, female-led Arthurian reimagining.

Book Details

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