Residing in the state of Hearts, young socialite and aspiring baker Catherine is our main protagonist. The one who's destined to yell '' off with their heads'' is determined to open her own bakery and have an income to live her own life. Catherine refuses to marry the quite insistent King of Hearts and submits herself to a life of hollowness.
The pacing is good, the love affair is well written and breaks the usual cliches and annoying tropes on the subject, to create a relationship as endearing as it is tragic.
Catherine is a naive person but in no way a simpleton, willing to smile and nod for her husband. Her growth, and fall into despair is heart-aching and not even excitedly expected by readers in the end when we see her at her highest spot; falling to a state of mind that she can never recover from. This future antagonist also displays a certain amount of flaws at the beginning that'll only get worse through the story.
Something that utterly disappointed me was the lack of madness in Wonderland. I mean, for heaven's sake, as the Chesire Cat put it '' we're all mad in here''. That wasn't a major theme of the book, nor a particular feature of the world Marissa Meyer created. Sure, some big events happen, and there is an idea of danger, but it felt very disconnected from the universe's core that Lewis Caroll created.
However, Heartless remains a retelling extremely well crafted, and the author clearly did her homework. She offers a tale curiouser and curiouser as the chapters come one after another.
* An element I've particularly enjoyed about Catherine was the fact that, unlike main characters in other retellings, she's the main reason why she was so unhappy at the end with a couple of selfish choices, which creates a more compelling storyline.
* The three sisters reminded me of the witches in the Villain series by Serena Valentino as well s the ones from Macbeth, yet they were uniquely creepy and didn't felt like '' copy and paste''.
Rating system: 3.9 of 5 white roses painted in red.