• Heart of the Moors

  • An Original Maleficent: Mistress of Evil Novel (The Maleficent: Mistress of Evil Series, Book 1)
  • By: Holly Black
  • Narrated by: Lucy Rayner
  • Length: 6 hrs and 6 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (23 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

When Maleficent put a crown on Aurora’s head, she didn’t think she was putting her in danger.

Ruling a kingdom is challenging under any circumstances. But Aurora - queen of Perceforest and queen of the Moors - is reigning under the weight of two crowns. Caught between the prejudices that divide her kingdom and eager to establish lasting peace, Aurora is determined to sign a treaty to unify the humans and the Fair Folk.

But as spiky dark flowers grow fiercely around Perceforest’s borders and a stable boy mysteriously disappears, tensions between humans and faeries are at a dangerous high.

It’s no help that Aurora hasn’t been sleeping. After all, how can she be certain she won’t wake a hundred years later? Moreover, she can’t be sure whom to trust. Her protective godmother, Maleficent; her sly advisor, Lord Ortolan; her devoted friend, Prince Phillip; and her new admirer, Count Alain, all claim to have her best interests at heart. And it soon becomes apparent that an underhanded plot poses unforeseen danger.

With not only her peace treaty but also the safety of her loved ones at stake, it’s up to Aurora to trust in her own heart and save her kingdom.

©2019 Disney Enterprises, Inc. (P)2020 Blackstone Publishing

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Fantastic exploration of the characters&universe

If you enjoyed the movies but wished there was more time for detail on how the world works and what the characters are thinking, you've gotta pick up this book. We get to dive into the worldbuilding of the Moors & its neighboring human kingdom as Aurora works to try and build peace between them, but most fascinating to me is the time we spend really getting to know all the main characters.
Aurora and Phillip finally the chance to get fleshed out, especially Aurora. She's kindhearted and inexperienced, but no pushover, even as she tries to adjust to all her new responsibilities while still trying to deal with the aftermath of being cursed. And we get to explore what it looks like when her and Phillip get the chance to know each other as friends beyond infatuation at first sight.
We also get a look inside Maleficent and even Diaval's heads as they also get their own POV chapters. And if you happen to like the thought of them in a relationship together, there are some great "subtle" moments on that front.
For the audiobook itself, the narrator has a lovely melodic voice that's worthy of delivering a fairytale, but my one missing star is that the rhythm of how she delivers the lines gets a bit same-y. Still really enjoyed it.