By Sarah Porter
Published March 2019 by Tor Teen
Prince and his fairy courtiers are staggeringly beautiful, unrelentingly cruel, and exhausted by the tedium of the centuries―until they meet foster-siblings Josh and Ksenia. Drawn in by their vivid emotions, undying love for each other, and passion for life, Prince will stop at nothing to possess them.
First seduced and then entrapped by the fairies, Josh and Ksenia learn that the fairies’ otherworldly gifts come at a terrible price―and they must risk everything in order to reclaim their freedom.
Disclaimer: The links in this post are affiliate links. This means if you click on an item and choose to purchase it, I will make a small commission at no cost to you. To see my full disclosure policy, click here. I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review via Netgalley.
If you are looking for gorgeous faeries and being dazzled by faerie court and intrigue, then Never-Contented Things is not for you.
Don’t get me wrong, there are faeries in this book, but they are not the kind you fall in love with.
Josh and Ksenia are foster siblings. They were placed in the same house at ages 10 and 12, with Ksenia being the older sibling. When the story starts, she’s about to age out as an adult and she isn’t sure what she is going to do with her life.
It’s clear from the start, Josh has some serious co-dependency issues regarding Ksenia. He’s desperately in love with her, and while she loves him, Ksenia’s is a familial love. However, her love for him is also desperate and she’s afraid to be without him. And I think this is because he’s really the only person/family who loves her (so she thinks) and she’s afraid to lose that.
That said, it makes for an uncomfortable read, but not a bad read by any means.
There’s a lot going on in this story and it mainly centers around a lot of bad decisions and unhealthy love. Josh takes it upon himself to make decisions on Ksenia’s behalf and because of this, they’re now living in some sort of faerie realm that looks identical to their neighborhood and house, but it isn’t.
It really, really reminded me of the scene in The Labyrinth where Sarah wakes up in her bedroom and it all looks normal, but upon further inspection it really isn’t normal and she isn’t really home. As a child, that scene gave me a crushing sense of panic, and I felt the same way reading this story with Ksenia’s confusion about her surroundings.
The faeries don’t play a huge role in this book, but of the faeries, Unselle is the scariest thing ever. She’s the one featured on the cover of the book. Unselle is gorgeous and creepy and honestly I felt like she made Prince look angelic.
The main arc of this story is about healing, and the differences between healthy and unhealthy relationships. Because on one side we have Josh, who thinks he has the ability and power to know what’s best for Ksenia, and on the other side we have Lexie, who wants Ksenia to discover and learn her truths for herself.
Lexie is one of my most favorite characters in this book. She is strong and she reminds Ksenia to be strong for herself, not for anyone else.
Obviously, I sincerely dislike Josh. I realize that the faeries tricked him, but on the other hand, he made some really shitty decisions and I just couldn’t find it in me to like him.
This is one of those books that I literally have spent days thinking about, because there’s so many elements and themes in this story that I needed time to digest them all. At first when I finished it, I told myself it was too uncomfortable of a read and I’d likely not read it again. But as I’ve sat and thought more and more about this book, I know without a doubt I’d re-read this one.
As a trigger warning, there are discussions of rape in this book. Also, the relationship between Josh and Ksenia can be considered incestuous, even though they aren’t technically related in any way besides being placed in the same house as kids.