Title: Stolen Midsummer Bride
Author: Tara Grayce
Pub. Date: May 21, 2021
Pub: Sword & Cross Publishing
Genre: Fantasy Romance Retelling
Steal a bride. Save the library. Try not to die.
Basil, a rather scholarly fae, works as an assistant librarian at the Great Library of the Court of Knowledge. Lonely and unwilling to join the yearly Midsummer Revel to find a mate, Basil takes the advice of his talking horse companion and decides to steal a human bride instead.
But Basil never expected to find a human girl waiting for him, wanting to get snatched. Nor had he expected a girl like Meg, an illiterate farmgirl who has no use for books.
With the barrier with the Realm of Monsters wearing thin and the chaos of Midsummer Night about to descend, will this unlikely pair put aside their differences long enough to save the Great Library from destruction? And maybe find a spark of love along the way.
This will be a spoiler free review. I should’ve guessed that this was going to be a retelling of A Midsummer Night’s Dream – which is easily my favorite play by Shakespeare. So you would think that I’d pick up on that nod from the title, and that I would immensely enjoy this.
Well, I guess it’s been too long since I read the OG Play, and this book honestly took so much brain power to remember all the hijinks and machinations of the play. This pretty much reads as the “background going-ons” of the play – but even then, it just read as tedious. I spent more time trying to remember the plot of A Midsummer Night’s Dream than actually enjoying the story.
Also, having now read 4 of these books, I want to see a bride actually be stolen. In some way or another, all the “brides” have willingly gone with their Fae counterparts. I just want some more tension and angst. These books are so short, and often the guy and girl fall in love very quickly – like drop of the hat, sudden realization, fall in love. For a series that is called “Stolen Brides Of The Fae” no one is actually stolen…
That being said, I didn’t hate this book. I enjoyed Basil and Meg – they were cute – I just wish their relationship was a larger part of this book. They kind of get lost in the chaos that is A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
And don’t get me wrong, I did enjoy this take on A Midsummer Night’s Dream – it echoes the original play, while bringing something fresh and new to the table. I really liked how it used elements from the play, and seamless tied it into this expansive Fae world these authors have created. I seriously love the concept of this series, and how it all interconnects and weaves together. I just wish the “stolen” bride relationships were fleshed out a little more, the stakes a little higher and the tension and angst a little heavier.
As much as I’m overall enjoying this series, and I love checking out new to me authors and authors I already love, I’m pretty much always left wanting more.
But I also really enjoyed the writing style. I’ve never read anything by Tara Grayce and I’m not mad that this is my first exposure to her writing style. I’m definitely interested in checking out some of her full-length works.
And I get that these are short fantasy romances – emphasis on the short – but I think that just means the story needs to be tighter, the emotional weights more impactful.
As much as I’m overall enjoying this series, and I love checking out new to me authors and authors I already love, I’m pretty much always left wanting more. Some of these books tie into other series, but other times, they’re standalones, and I’m left a little underwhelmed.
I’m 100% going to read the next one and the rest of the series. I’m enjoying myself too much not too – and let’s be honest, I’m way too invested now. Each upcoming book just sounds so good and I go into each of them with an open mind. If you’re looking for quick, Fae/Human romance reads then you’re probably going to want to pick this series up!