The Goblin King - Shona Husk

Confession, I love the movie Labyrinth in unnatural and fan-girlish ways. So anything with goblins that sounds like it could remotely remind me of the movie, I will give a shot. And that is why I picked up The Goblin King. Was the book anything like Labyrinth? No... well except for the part about the Goblin King granting wishes and abducting a woman, but that's about as far as the similarities go.

Centuries ago, King Roan was cursed by a Druid who believed that Roan had sold out their country. The curse banished Roan and all his men to the Shadowlands where their souls would slowly wither until they turned into goblins. Only Roan and his brother, Dai, have managed to survive the curse but each of them feels that their days are numbered.

In the "Fixed Realm" (aka: modern day reality) Eliza is blackmailed into an engagement with a sociopath. After getting drunk off her ass at her birthday party she remembers an old fairytale her mother used to tell her about the Goblin King and calls him. Roan answers the call and promptly decides to kidnap Eliza. A lot of back and forth between the Shadowlands and the Fixed Realm ensue.

It was so refreshing to see mythology outside of vampires, werewolves, and fae used in a paranormal romance. Husk was not afraid to make her goblins ugly and terrifying looking.

Additionally, Roan and his brother Dai were pretty great characters. However, Dai definitely stole the show for me. The only big problem I had was that Eliza fell a little flat as a character. She had the potential to be really interesting and to grow by getting herself out of the shitty relationship she was in but instead Roan ended up fixing it for her. It also annoyed me that Eliza never took initiative throughout the book. Events happened to her and all around her but she never did  anything by herself under her own motivation. Something would happen and she would just sort of go with the flow. I would've liked to have seen her take control of her life rather than always getting saved by Roan.

I have to admit, I went into this novel with rather low expectations and am pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed the story. However, I'm unsure if I'll continue reading the series.