Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Book Review: The Evil Queen (The Forest of Good and Evil #1) by Gena Showalter

The Evil Queen
The Forest of Good and Evil #1
By: Gena Showalter
Release Date: June 25, 2019
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Source: eArc from publisher for honest review
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Welcome to the Forest of Good and Evil. A dream come true, and a living nightmare. 

Evil isn’t born, it’s made. One thought and action at a time. Take a good look at what you’ve made. 

Far, far away, in the realm of Enchantia, creatures of legend still exist, magic is the norm and fairy tales are real. Except, fairy tales aren’t based on myths and legends of the past—they are prophecies of the future. 

Raised in the mortal realm, Everly Morrow has no idea she’s a real life fairy tale princess—until she manifests an ability to commune with mirrors. 

Look. See… What will one peek hurt? 

Soon, a horrifying truth is revealed. She is fated to be Snow White’s greatest enemy, the Evil Queen. 

With powers beyond her imagination or control—and determined to change Fate itself—Everly returns to the land of her birth. There, she meets Roth Charmaine, the supposed Prince Charming. Their attraction is undeniable, but their relationship is doomed. 

As bits and pieces of the prophecy unfold, Everly faces one betrayal after another, and giving in to her dark side proves more tempting every day. Can she resist, or will she become the queen—and villain—she was born to be?

My Thoughts:

The Evil Queen was a thrilling and adventurous page-turner, that I didn't want to stop reading, for even a moment.  For being over five hundred pages long, this story didn't lull or have any boring parts!  The characters and plot kept me on my toes, and made the story fly by!  

Ms. Showalter delivered a unique and enthralling Snow White retelling, where fairytale is prophecy, and our main character has to figure out which role she will play.  Everly Morrow strongly believes that her destiny is to be that of the Evil Queen. 

The author whisked me away to Enchantia, a beautiful, but dangerous place.  The imagery of the enchanted forest was magical.  The descriptions of the characters and animals were so vivid that I could see them perfectly and their unique personalities emanated from every page.   I loved being inside of Everly's head.  At certain times I connected with her, and with all that happened to her, I could see how it could lead to her becoming the evil queen, but hoped that she would find a way to be better than everyone expected her to be.  I loved reading about her powers of sorcery and all that she could do.  

Roth, Everly's love interest, was a total alpha male.  The dynamic between these two was sexy, flirty, and intense at times.  He was highly loved and respected by his people,.  There were parts of him that I loved, and some decisions that he made that really frustrated me.  Roth was battle worn, and very stoic.  I loved how Everly brought out a less serious side in him.

All of the secondary characters were so much fun to read about.  We got a witch, an oracle, and various family members that were a part of the Snow White Prophecy.  I enjoyed getting to know all of these characters, and reading about all of their magical abilities.  Along the way we encountered fairies, trolls, sirens, and a variety of other mythical creatures!

I contemplated the real life parallels that Ms. Showalter addressed.  As we go through life, at some point we will encounter rejection, betrayal, tragedy, and grief.  We have free choice. We can become bitter, selfish, and angry, or we can pick ourselves up, and strive to accomplish positive growth, learn important life lessons, and become the best version of ourselves.

Everything in The Evil Queen fascinated me, from the setting, to the characters, to wanting to know who was who in the prophecy, and how everything would play out.  Ms. Showalter shows readers that people are complex and aren't usually all of one thing.  At different times and under different circumstances, each of us could fulfill the essence of what it means to be Snow White, The Evil Queen, The Huntsman, or one of the seven protectors.  Important themes and questions such as how much of our life is destiny, and how much of what happens is based on our free will, and the decisions that we make, had me in deep thought.  Self-fulfilling Prophecy was something I heavily pondered as well.

I am thrilled that this book in the first in The Forest of Good and Evil Series.  In the story, we learned that in different lands, different fairytale prophecies were playing out, such as Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, and The Little Mermaid.  I can't wait to continue this series and read each of these fairytale retellings.

If you are looking for a magical journey, where you are transported to a different place, this is the story for you.  If you are a reader, who enjoys a unique  and romantic fairytale retelling with a twist, a beautiful setting, fascinating characters, and an addictive plot, I highly recommend you read, The Evil Queen by Gena Showalter.

Purchase At:

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | IndieBound | TBD 

About the Author:

Gena Showalter is the New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of the spellbinding Lords of the Underworld, Otherworld Assassins, and Angels of the Dark series, as well as two young adult series--Everlife and the White Rabbit Chronicles--and the highly addictive Original Heartbreakers series. 

In addition to being a National Reader's Choice and two time RITA nominee, her romance novels have appeared in Cosmopolitan (Red Hot Read) and Seventeen magazine. She was interviewed on Nightline and has been mentioned in Orange is the New Black. Her books have been translated in multiple languages. 

She’s hard at work on her next novel, a tale featuring an alpha male with a dark side and the strong woman who brings him to his knees. Check back often to learn more about Gena, her menagerie of rescue dogs, and all her upcoming books.


  1. I enjoyed some of her books but I recently heard about this one so I was curious to see how it was. It looks good!

  2. Wow. This book sounds amazing. I'm glad you enjoyed it so much. It definitely sounds like a great one!
    Love your review! ;)

  3. I cant wait to dive into this one! It sounds so good and I always love evil queen twists. Great review!

  4. I've heard a lot about this LIndy, it's on my list. Thanks!
    ps still dealing with flood issues but I'll be by when I can xo

  5. Oh yeah, you got my full attention for this book with your fab review, Lindy. :)

  6. Oh, how you tempt me Lindy! I love a good retelling and this sounds like it pulled you in!

  7. oooo a forest and an evil queen and gena showalter and and....
    sherry @ fundinmental

  8. We're getting a ton of evil retellings lately. I'm glad you enjoyed this one so much! I like how you talked about the real world parallels and how we aren't all good or all bad.I'm not sure someone who becomes an evil queen is that good but I'm glad it worked in the story. ❤️

    1. Thanks Dani! The story ended up being more complex than the straight good versus evil.

  9. Oh such a great review. I have the biggest soft spot for Gena Showalters' books and was so excited to see her come out with a YA novel! Your review is great. So happy you loved this book. I'm so excited to get my hands on this one when I'm able to buy another book this year!!

    Sharrice @Reese's Reviews

    1. I hope you get the opportunity to read it Reese! I know you'll love it!!!


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