Blog Tours/Street Teams, Diverse Books, YA Books

The Damned by Renee Ahdieh – ARC Review

Thank you to Hodder Books for sending me an arc in exchange for an honest review.

I am part of The Damned Blog Tour and I will be sharing my review of The Damned with you all. I absolutely adore everything that Renee writes and The Damned is no exception. This is the sequel to The Beautiful which came out last year and quickly became one of my favourite reads of 2019 and The Damned is definitely become a favourite this year!

You can read my review of The Beautiful here

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

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.

We pick up where The Beautiful ended and what an ending it was! We get to see several points of view in the first half of this book which I loved because I really love these vampires, especially Odette! Her friendship with Celine was everything!  

This book takes the world we are introduced to and expands it so we see so much more of the world hidden from humans. We get to go to the world of the fae and we learn more about the history of the vampires and werewolves and I loved it so much. It made me see things that happened in The Beautiful in a new light. I love the incredible world building and how it was incorporated into the story so it didn’t feel like it was just info dumping. We are introduced to new characters and we get to see more of some of the characters in the first book. One of my favourite side characters is Arjun and I just hope we get to see more of him in the next book!

For far too long, Celine had looked to others for answers. It was time for her to look within herself.

Celine starts this book so unsure of herself because she has lost her memories and doesn’t know what has happened to her and she hates how everyone thinks they what’s best for her so she goes looking for answers and ends up learning so much about herself and her history. I loved seeing how she didn’t let anyone dictate her life and took charge of it herself.

It is was easy for a man to be kind and generous in times of plenty. The real measure of a man was what he did and said in times of difficulty.

While The Beautiful was Celine’s story, this book is Bastian’s. He has such wonderful character development in this book. Through Bastian we also get lots of discussions of toxic masculinity and what truly makes a man great. I loved seeing how he has to unlearn all the things that have been drilled into him by his uncle and he has to consciously choose to be better. It was so wonderful to read and see his development and the choices he makes, especially when it comes to Celine. Everyone insists on knowing better for her but he trusts her to make her own decisions and supports her in those decisions. I just loved it so much!

Renee’s writing is so beautiful and the vivid descriptions were so wonderful and I could really see the world that Renee has created. I loved the vampires who were dark and seductive and you’re just instantly drawn to them and it was also interesting to see how they were different yet similar to the werewolves especially considering their shared history and why they don’t like each other.

If a mediocre young man could crow to the world about his mediocrity, then why should a superior young woman not do the same?

I love how diverse the characters are and how Renee has so many cultures seamlessly incorporated into her world and it’s one of the things I love about her books especially that I can see myself in her worlds. There are discussions of how being a person of colour affects how you are treated and it was so wonderful to see this in a book but also people like Arjun, make the best out of their situation.

I absolutely adore this series and I cannot wait to read the next book! I am so happy that we get another book because I am not ready to leave this world and I’m excited to see where the story will go next and who it will follow.

Make sure you check out everyone else’s posts too!

10 thoughts on “The Damned by Renee Ahdieh – ARC Review”

  1. I skimmed this a bit because I haven’t read The Beautiful yet, but I did acquire it recently on Kindle and I can’t wait to dive into it. It sounds like it’s going to be a lot of fun!

    Liked by 1 person

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