Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Book Review: The Decoy Princess by Dawn Cook

Book 1 in the Princess duology
Pages: 356
Publisher: Ace
Received: Bought
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars, Special Shelf

Way back in 2012 I asked you for book recommendations based on my Special Shelf court fantasy favorites (think, Crown Duel, The False Prince, Poison Study, etc). Scarlett recommended The Decoy Princess, and she was fairly confident that I would love it, and she was absolutely right!

Seriously, this book has it all: court intrigue, a totally sleepover-worthy main character, a swoony slow burn romance with a guy who stands on his own as a worthwhile character, a swoony villain who is actually interesting in his own right, peril, fun side characters, chases, magic, horses, murder, impending war between kingdoms, ah this book has everything I love!

Even though the book ends pretty much midway through the overarching story (though not on a big cliffhanger—think The False Prince type of ending), I've been pushing off reading the sequel because I've been wanting to "save it." By this point, though, I really need to re-read the first book before starting in on the second because all the intrigue details are a little fuzzy now.

Which is totally fine because as a Special Shelf book I fully intend to re-read The Decoy Princess until my copy falls apart. It's that kind of love.

The Decoy Princess is written by "Dawn Cook" but really that's just another name used by the dark urban fantasy author Kim Harrison. I've never read anything under her Kim Harrison name, but I'm guessing the tone is very different. The writing style used in The Decoy Princess is extremely reminiscent of my other fantasy favorites Crown Duel by Sherwood Smith and The Conjurer Princess by Vivian Vande Velde. Basically, perfect for me.

Looking for another book like this? 
You might like (all the books mentioned above, and): 

Click on the covers to go to my reviews/Goodreads


  1. Ooh, I also really enjoyed the books that you mentioned especially Poison Study and will have to look this one up! I had no idea Kim Harrison wrote under a different name either. I also haven't read any of her urban fantasy series.

    1. I get the impression this is really different from her urban fantasy books (of which I have very little interest in reading). I can definitely see you liking this book though!

  2. This has been on my TBR for a while, but I've been waiting for my library to get it. Did not know it was Kim Harrison. I know lots of people love Kim Harrison's books; I think I tried a werewolf one once but didn't get into it, but I don't always like paranormal.

    If Decoy Princess is really up there with Crown Duel and False Prince (and better than Prince's sequels), then it might be worth looking for it on Kindle.

    1. I'm pretty picky about paranormal books, too. It's rarely my genre. I think you'd like this book though. It's definitely your type of book.

  3. I'm very interested to see what you make of the sequel (in particular, a certain storyline/character development... don't worry, I won't spoil! ;P).

  4. I really enjoyed Sherwood Smith's series and love fantasy so I'll be adding this one to my wishlist, Small. It sounds awesome. I should probably check out Velde's writing too.


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