Over the last few years Cursebreakers by Brigid Kemmerer has become one of my favourite young adult fantasy series. I feel like it’s been a while since I not only got really got invested in one but that I also saw it through to the end! So, I’ve decided to write about why you should pick up Cursebreakers by Brigid Kemmerer.
I was recently lucky enough to win an advanced copy of the final book in the series, A Vow So Bold and Deadly*, and I only finished it a couple of days ago. I truly had no idea how this series would end and I’m hoping we do eventually get more of this world.
Here are five reasons to read Cursebreakers by Brigid Kemmerer!
Classic young adult
This series felt like being wrapped up in a warm comforting hug. There were so many of my favourite fantasy tropes in here that I’ve really come to love. A hidden heir? Check. Somebody coming into their new magical powers? Check. An evil enchantress? Check. Two kingdoms at war? Check. A romantic scene on a balcony during a ball? Check. An aloof prince? Check. The loyal guard? Check. A kiiiiiiiiind of love triangle? Check. An evil looking creature that ends up being a fave character? Check. This series has it all!
Harper, one of the protagonists of this series, has cerebral palsy. Now personally I cannot speak for the accuracy of the portrayal, but what I can say is that it is not a case of it being mentioned once and then brushed under the carpet, it’s something that we see play a part in Harper’s day to day life throughout the series. Harper’s brother is also gay and Rhen suffers from PTSD. Again, I can’t comment on the accuracy of the PTSD and also I’m unsure as to whether this is explicitly stated on page, but if not, it’s certainly alluded to. After going through a lot of trauma, Rhen struggles and we see this clearly through his actions.
Morally grey characters
Each of the characters in this series is complex and layered, and I loved seeing their development across the books! The character’s motivations, loyalties and perceptions shifted throughout the series, so on one page you could find yourself thinking that the character is finally making a good decision, and within a chapter you’re questioning every choice they’ve every made and where their alliance lies! This is also evident through the relationships between some of the characters becoming strained, while they grow stronger with someone you first envisioned as their enemy.
Women in positions of power
Ahhh yes okay I love, love, love this! Although this series is about two Princes primarily, we also read a lot about women in powerful positions, such as the Queen of Syl Shallow. Even the women who aren’t in these kinds of positions are still powerful in their own right. Harper, coming from our world, does not hold back in asserting her thoughts or her viewpoint. We also have female bodyguards, female soldiers, female royal advisors and our villain (although she is terrible) is also a woman. I love feminist fantasy!
Magic and powers
Magic has this world divided; some people thrive with their powers, others are terrified of what magic can achieve. In Cursebreakers we read about characters coming into their powers which were previously hidden, and also meet those with more experience who can offer teaching moments. We love a magic training montage!
So there are my 5 reasons to read the Cursebreakers trilogy! Does this sound like your cup of tea?
*Affiliate link for Book Depository.