Author: Danielle L. Jensen
Release Date: 1st April 2014
For five centuries, a witch’s curse has bound the trolls to their city beneath the mountain. When Cécile de Troyes is kidnapped and taken beneath the mountain, she realises that the trolls are relying on her to break the curse.
Cécile has only one thing on her mind: escape. But the trolls are clever, fast, and inhumanly strong. She will have to bide her time…
But the more time she spends with the trolls, the more she understands their plight. There is a rebellion brewing. And she just might be the one the trolls were looking for…
This book is unfortunately a prime example of why you shouldn’t rely on goodreads ratings when choosing a book to read.
I wanted a lighthearted and fun fantasy book to read during my exams and Stolen Songbird seemed to have all of those boxes ticked, as well as the bonus of having a very respectable 4.01 goodreads rating – But I think I’m being generous by even giving this 2.5 stars.
Stolen Songbird follows a girl named Cécile who is kidnapped by trolls who believe she is the key to breaking a curse that has trapped them in their hidden city beneath a mountain. Despite it’s promising start, I felt this book missed the mark in too many ways.
The biggest problem I had was with Cécile – Too often, her reactions felt unnatural and forced for the sake of the plot development. Within moments of her being captured, she is told she is to be married to a troll prince, and she doesn’t even put up a fight! She talks about escaping a lot, but is actually very civil with everyone and settles in so quickly. Not once does she ache for her old life, her friends or her family – Instead, she’s happy to be running around playing archery games with trolls, a species she only found out existed two minutes ago. Everything was too ridiculous – even for a story about cursed trolls kidnapping a girl.
I also really didn’t understand Tristan. His motives were vague and questionable to say the least, and I thought he was emotionally manipulative towards Cécile. He tells her he loves her and then constantly lies and says how he doesn’t trust her (even though she seems to bizarrely trust him unconditionally). I really wanted Cécile to be stronger and more of an independent character, but everything she does is based around Tristan. For example, when Cécile discovers she might have powers, instead of being curious about it for herself, the first thing she thinks of is whether Tristan will now think differently of her. It’s so stupid and I just didn’t care by the end of the book.
Another thing I have to mention is the ‘bond’ Cécile and Tristan shared which allowed them to know how the other was feeling. It was introduced as an interesting idea but was then confusingly only applicable when the author felt like it. One minute they could both feel everything the other person could with solid clarity, and then the next minute they are confusedly pondering over how the other feels. For two people who are meant to be able to know exactly how the other feels, there was a lot of miscommunication.
Also worth mentioning, is that for the whole book, all I could picture in my head were these little guys:
I know this review makes me sound like a negative nancy, but I did still like it (a bit). It’s an interesting idea and stands out from other fantasy books I’ve read, but it was too inconsistent for me to completely immerse myself into. I don’t think I will be carrying on with the series, but I’ve heard so many good things that perhaps it is just me!
Have you read Stolen Songbird? What did you think of it?