I started Hero by Alethea Kontis with the hopes that it would surpass Enchanted, Kontis’s debut fantasy novel. You see, Hero is the companion to Enchanted and features another of the Woodcutter sisters. The Woodcutter girls are awesome and born into kind of a magical family, so I had hoped this book would be able to capture the charm and the warmth of the first book. Unfortunately, Hero kind of missed the mark for me. Perhaps it was a case of the wrong book at the wrong time, but I just didn’t feel it this time around with Hero. That is not to say I don’t recommend this book, that’s not true, I think a lot of people will love it. In fact, I liked this book, it just was not love for me.
Saturday Woodcutter thinks that she is the only Woodcutter girl without magic. She longs for adventure and for something more from her ordinary life besides a special sort of sword. One day, she gets just what she wishes for, as she accidentally summons an ocean and her sister Thursday’s pirate ship to her backyard. Saturday is about to have the adventure of a lifetime as she finds herself in the cave of a witch who is blind because her brother Jack stole the witch’s eyes. Furthermore, in the cave, Thursday comes across Peregrine, a noble who has been cursed into taking the place of Leila, the witch’s daughter — yet he still has his manhood intact. At Peregrine’s side is Betwixt, a chimera who is a rather loyal friend. Will Saturday escape the witch’s clutches? Will there be a fairy tale romance in store for our intrepid heroine? You will just have to read Hero by Alethea Kontis to find out.
Saturday Woodcutter is actually a pretty neat character. She is very stubborn and head strong, which are characteristics that I like in female characters. She’s also incredibly loyal and genuinely cares for her family. I liked that she was so insistent on saving the day, even if it might have bad results for her. She really does live up to being a hero and is very likable. I think that if you are into female characters who won’t take no for an answer and who forge bravely ahead of everyone else, you will love Saturday. She’s certainly different from her sister Sunday, from Enchanted.
Peregrine is the love interest and I am a bit unsure how to feel about him. Like, he gets turned into a female, he takes on Leila’s form, yet he really seems to hate being female. However, he deals with it because he does not want the witch to find out the truth and kill him. I liked how he treated Betwixt. I also liked his insistence on manners and politeness. However, I sort of did not love his reactions to being turned into a female. I don’t know. I will admit also, that I liked his insistence on honor and keeping a promise. He’s quite the clever character. YET, he does fall in love with Saturday rather quickly and she does call him out on it, saying that he only loves her because she’s one of the very, very few women he has ever come across.
Unfortunately for me, I thought Kontis’s Hero felt rather slow paced. I never felt the urge to pick up the book in my down time. There was no pressing need for me to find out what would happen next. I did find myself getting confused by the action quite a bit and also was unsure of what was going on. I wouldn’t say this book was confusing, though. I would say that it’s my fault that I wasn’t able to pay good attention. I just was not that into this book. I would however, recommend Hero to people who are obsessed with fairy tale retellings and people who pay strong attention to detail.
Disclosure: Review Copy Obtained Via Amazon Vine
Other reviews of Hero by Alethea Kontis:
The Book Smugglers – “I thoroughly enjoyed the quick, lighthearted read that is Hero“
Jenna Does Books – “a gender-bending, swash-buckling tale”
Lit Stack – “very imaginative, something I appreciated even with the narrative weaknesses”