The Cruel Prince Themes & Motifs

Holly Black
This Study Guide consists of approximately 71 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Cruel Prince.
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Cruelty Leads to Further Cruelty

One of the biggest themes in The Cruel Prince is that cruelty of one person pressures others to be just as cruel. Nearly every character in the novel is changed by the cruelty of other characters. Cardan is cruel to Jude because Balekin abuses him. Jude is mean to others because that is how Madoc taught her to survive. Taryn turns against Jude because of Locke’s meddling. The author shows that the cycle of cruelty can never end if no one is willing to show kindness.

The cycle of cruelty begins with abuse against Cardan. Abandoned by his father for being the sixth born with no direct line to the throne, Cardan was put under the care of his eldest brother Balekin. This man, in return, abused Cardan constantly for his weakness. This moment is one of the most disturbing scenes...

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This section contains 2,713 words
(approx. 7 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Cruel Prince Study Guide
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