Short N’Sweet Book Review: Once Upon a Broken Heart by Stephanie Garber

Welcome to the Short N’ Sweet Book Review! For the nine years that I’ve been reviewing books on this blog, I’ve written long, wordy reviews that, let’s be honest, not a lot of people are probably reading. This year I decided to shorten those reviews and get straight to the point – what is this book about, who wrote it, where you can find and a short review on what I loved, liked and maybe thought could be better.

Today’s review is a dark and whimsical fairytale full of romance and adventure and heartbreak, Once Upon a Broken Heart by Stephanie Garber!



How far would you go for happily ever after?

For as long as she can remember, Evangeline Fox has believed in true love and happy endings…until she learns that the love of her life will marry another.

Desperate to stop the wedding and to heal her wounded heart, Evangeline strikes a deal with the charismatic but wicked Prince of Hearts. In exchange for his help, he asks for three kisses, to be given at the time and place of his choosing.

But after Evangeline’s first promised kiss, she learns that bargaining with an immortal is a dangerous game—and that the Prince of Hearts wants far more from her than she’d pledged. He has plans for Evangeline, plans that will either end in the greatest happily ever after or the most exquisite tragedy….


Genre: Fantasy, Romance

Pages: 408

Part of a Series?: First in a Duology, I believe

Release Date: September 28th, 2021

Publisher: Flatiron Books

Source: Owned Physical Copy

Find the Author: Website / Instagram / Twitter / GoodReads


GoodReads / BookShop (support your local indie!) / IndieBound / Barnes and Noble / Amazon / Audible / Book Depository / Apple Books / Kobo / Google Play


I hesitated on reading this book at first and that was mostly because I felt like I couldn’t read this book without finishing the Caraval series. I really liked the first book but I just struggled with the second book so I never finished the series. I was afraid what I struggled with in book two would be the entirety of this book. I don’t know where my brain got with that but it did. I’ve also struggled with any sort of speculative fiction so I wasn’t sure if I felt up to it.

I was absolutely wrong and I’m so sorry that I waited so long to read this book because I LOVED it and I cannot wait until book two releases sometime this year. This book was it’s own fairytale, whimsical and magical, dark and romantic, full of adventure and danger. I wasn’t sure what to think at first but once I was hooked, I was hooked and I didn’t put it down until I was finished. Stephanie doesn’t waste her time – she jumps into the story from page one until the last, leaving you constantly needing to turn the page to find out what happens next. It kept taking turns that I didn’t expect, it kept me guessing the entire time. Every time I thought I had a grasp on the story, every time I was sure I knew what was coming, it surprised me and turned in an entirely different direction.

I loved the main character, Evangeline, so much. I think she is what makes the story so wonderful. She is such a fairy tale character with her rose gold hair and her determination for her happily ever after, so much so that she makes all the mistakes in trying to get there. It’s her decisions that drive the story in all these wacky and messed up directions but she’s still so endearing and so relatable and it’s easy to be on her side, even as she royally messes up. I also think the cast of characters around her – Jacks, LaLa, Marisol, Apollo and so on – give so much color to the world and to the story. I also think the world that Stephanie created in itself is so beautiful and whimsical that it feels like a character on its own. It felt like a world that was both real and so unreal at the same time. It felt like the village or kingdom that you’d read or see in a Disney movie but it also felt like something you’d never experienced before and I loved it.


4 out of 5 Stars



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