Book Review: Foul Heart Huntsman by Chloe Gong

About the Book:

Title: Foul Heart Huntsman

Author: Chloe Gong

Series: Foul Lady Fortune

Page Length: 560

Publication Date: Sept. 26, 2023

Synopsis: Winter is drawing thick in 1932 Shanghai, as is the ever-nearing threat of a Japanese invasion.

Rosalind Lang has suffered the worst possible fate for a national spy: she’s been exposed. With the media storm camped outside her apartment for the infamous Lady Fortune, she’s barely left her bedroom in weeks, plotting her next course of action after Orion was taken and his memories of Rosalind wiped. Though their marriage might have been a sham, his absence hurts her more than any physical wound. She won’t rest until she gets him back.

But with her identity in the open, the task is near impossible. The only way to leave the city and rescue Orion is under the guise of a national tour. It’s easy to convince her superiors that the countryside needs unity more than ever, and who better than an immortal girl to stir pride and strength into the people?

When the tour goes wrong, however, everything Rosalind once knew is thrown up in the air. Taking refuge outside Shanghai, old ghosts come into the open and adversaries turn to allies. To save Orion, they must find a cure to his mother’s traitorous invention and take this dangerous chemical weapon away from impending foreign invasion—but the clock is ticking, and if Rosalind fails, it’s not only Orion she loses, but her nation itself.

LINKS:   Goodreads   |    Amazon

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My Review:

Foul Heart Huntsman is the thrilling conclusion to the Foul Lady Fortune duology, and it did not disappoint! This book was so gripping, and I’m obsessed with so many different aspects of it. The characters, the political intrigue, the fantasy elements, THE LOVE STORIES! I definitely can’t get enough of the romances, and I wholly cheered for each and every one.

I’ve become so invested in these characters, especially since many of them are also in the These Violent Delights series. They are all so layered and compelling, and the growth of Rosalind, Orion, Celia, Oliver, Phoebe, Alisa, and so many more is amazing. The story focuses quite a bit on relationships of all kinds – friendship, good and bad family ties, romantic relationships – and they are all complicated and intricately layered. Also, the reappearance of some beloved characters from the These Violent Delights duology might have made me squeal in delight.

Gong has a talent in creating compelling and complex relationships and exploring how those relationships change and affect each of the characters. Their loyalties are tested, and they constantly have to reevaluate their purpose and what is most important to them. And let me tell you, it’s a wild ride!!

Like its predecessor, this story has so many unexpected twists and turns, and the characters are constantly challenged in ways they never expected. The politics, secrets, lies, and betrayal are consuming and high-stakes, and there are so many nail-biting scenes that I had to get a manicure when I finished the book. lol It definitely tested my nerves as I worried over the fate of some of my favorite characters. They constantly hurled themselves into high-stakes, life-threatening situations, and they are continually in danger.

And for the Shakespeare lovers (like me!!), the As You Like It vibes are great! I love that Gong’s stories are inspired by Shakespearean plays, and though they have some of the foundations of his works, her stories are completely original and fresh.

I thought this was an exciting and gripping conclusion to the duology, and I particularly liked the exceptional character growth and examination of relationships. With a compelling blend of history and fantasy, exceptional world and character building, and powerful messages, there’s a lot to love about this YA fantasy. Special thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with a copy of the book. All thoughts are my own.



Favorite Parts:

  • The romances.
  • The characters.
  • The Shakespearean elements.
  • The blend of history and fantasy.

Favorite Lines:

“That’s something to remember about men: the trickiest ones know how to hide their temper, so one should never assume the absence of anger equates kindness.”

“What is love if you are not cared for in return? It doesn’t matter how thoroughly you choose it.”

“She wasn’t enough of a fool to believe that she could have the world’s love, and yet she was enough of one to stick around anyway.”

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