One of my favorite books of 2019 was The Beautiful. So I was super excited for the sequel, The Damned and so happy I got an eARC through Netgalley. It took me a while to start reading it though and it also took me a while to finish it. Last week I finally finished the book, just in time for the third book releasing in November. And today it’s time for my review, so let’s dive in.
There will be some spoilers for The Beautiful
Following the events of The Beautiful, Sébastien Saint Germain is now cursed and forever changed. The treaty between the Fallen and the Brotherhood has been broken, and war between the immortals seems imminent. The price of loving Celine was costly. But Celine has also paid a high price for loving Bastien.
Still recovering from injuries sustained during a night she can’t quite remember, her dreams are troubled. And she doesn’t know she has inadvertently set into motion a chain of events that could lead to her demise and unveil a truth about herself she’s not quite ready to learn.
Forces hiding in the shadows have been patiently waiting for this moment for centuries. And just as Bastien and Celine begin to uncover the danger around them, they learn their love could tear them apart.
New York Times bestselling author Renée Ahdieh returns with the second installment of her new sumptuous, sultry and romantic series, The Beautiful.
The Damned by Renée Ahdieh
I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
I love this cover so much! The first book had a beautiful cover but this second one was even better. I adore the image, the colors are perfect and I really like the font of the title. This is everything I want in a fantasy cover and it really shows the vibe of the series for me.
“Then why have you given me the choice, against this inclination?” “Because I should not make your story about me.”
This is going to be a hard review to write. It took me a long time to finish the book and I think that was part personal circumstances and part because of the book. This book starts off quite slow and the POV’s change a bit from the first book. Sébastien is much more the focus in this book where Celine was more of the focus in the first book. So I had some trouble getting into the story until I hit about 35% I think. After that I started to read faster and faster and I really enjoyed it. The end was very suspenseful and I can’t wait for the next book.
“Because of everything that happened, I’ve learned to love myself more,” she said. And is that not the best gift any trial in life can give you? The power to love yourself today better than you did the day before.”
We follow our characters a little while after the events of The Beautiful. Celine doesn’t have her memories anymore but she wants to know what happened badly. Sébastien tries to stay away from Celine and to get used to his new situation. And that’s not easy. We finally find out who was actually behind the attacks in the first book. I really enjoyed that part of the story and it was interesting to read about the motives behind it all. We also get to read about a whole different place and we just get to know all the characters better. Michael has a bit of a bigger role in this book and I really enjoyed his character!
“What you are has no bearing on who you become, Sebastien. Man or demon, that is entirely up to you. It is never too late to chase the better version of yourself.”
While I found certain characters a bit annoying in the first part of the book that did change. Later on we actually get to see some interesting development, especially in Sébastien. I also loved how we got an expansion on the plot compared to the first book. Like I said, the world get’s a lot bigger, but we also get more characters and the plot definitely evolves. While it took me a while to get into the story, I loved the later half.
I’m very excited for the next book and I can’t wait to where we are going with it. Since we got a different focus in this book, I’m also expecting another focus in the next. The synopsis starts with Pippa so I’m wondering if she might be the focus. I’m also excited for Michael’s story in the next book!