2022 Book Review Book Reviews Fantasy

The Damned

Hello! I do my best to keep reviews spoiler free and if they do contain spoilers, I would have a disclaimer. There are no The Damned spoilers written in this review, but since it is the second novel in The Beautiful series, there may be spoilers for the previous book (The Beautiful). You can see my full review of the first book here.

The Damned by Renée Ahdieh

Rating: 1.5 out of 5.

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.


I would be lying if I said I didn’t secretly hope this novel would be better than its predecessor, so I will just flat out say it: I secretly wished this novel would be better than its predecessor and unfortunately it was not. I was hoping this second novel would go back to the cool story of Celine trying to solve a mystery but instead this book went full vampire fantasy mode. There was definitely not a lack of brooding internal monologues delivered by Bastien and brooding looks given from one vampire to another. The author even threw in a whole fey plot. I think the whole appeal this story had to me was that it was a historical fiction, but now that the story is shifting to the fey world, all the historical aspects are gone. Another reason I was disappointed in this novel was because the first half had a lack of drive in the plot. It kind of felt like nothing was happening. Bastien was sulking around, the other vampires were sulking that he was sulking, and Celine was kind of there, but not really. It took a long time for there to finally be a goal that set things into motion and that was irritating as a reader.


Unfortunately, I do not have a favorite or least favorite character in this novel. I wasn’t really invested enough to really form an attachment or feeling for any of the characters and that’s another thing that had me disappointed. I appreciate the author giving a little more sight into some of the other character’s backstory, but like I said earlier, I didn’t feel any sort of attachment to the characters so the backstory didn’t impact how I viewed the story.


In the end, this book was not my cup of tea. I didn’t enjoy the plot and characters, and found myself hoping things would pick up so I could finish the novel sooner. I hope if anyone does decide to read this book (or already has) they have a better experience with it than I do.

Let’s Talk:
  • Have you read any books from The Beautiful series?
    • If so, did you enjoy it?
  • Do you enjoy fantasy romance novels?

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