Ever Cursed

Ever Cursed cover
Ever Cursed by Corey Ann Haydu

by Corey Ann Haydu
Simon Pulse, 2020
298 pages

Age 13 and older

Jane, 18, is the oldest of the five Spellbound princesses of Ever, each cursed to go without something particular from the moment she turns 13. Jane can’t eat, Nora can’t love, Alice can’t sleep, Grace can’t remember. Eden, about to turn 13, will go without hope. Jane and her sisters think their father is a good king and kind man; Reagan, the young witch who cast the spell, knows otherwise. She cursed the family after learning the king raped her mother. She only recently discovered that in casting the curse she threatened a long-ago agreement between witches and royals. Now there are four days until Reagan turns 18 and the curse turns True—irreversible. Reagan’s only hope to save her family and Jane’s only hope to save herself is if it can be undone. With blistering honesty, this feminist novel alternates between Jane’s and Reagan’s points of view as it exposes sexism and misogyny, and the willful ignorance and lack of compassion on which power and economic privilege depend.  Jane and Reagan are both white, but the fresh, imaginative world-building embraces racial diversity and queer inclusiveness in a story as intentionally unsettling (e.g., the sexual objectification of Jane and her sisters by suitors who prefer them Spellbound; the silence that supports the status quo) as it is immensely satisfying, if not cathartic, once the two young women join forces, silences are broken, truths are made public, and a reckoning occurs. ©2021 Cooperative Children’s Book Center