Mistress of All Evil by Serena Valentino – Book Review

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“It isn’t easy being green. The real story of Disney’s most famous villain.”

If there is one thing directly associated with myself, it would be Disney. I have 7 Disney tattoos, I’ve been to Disney World five times, I have an enormous collection of Disney memorabilia, and the room I write this review in is decorated with tons of Disney decor. It is safe to say when it comes to Disney I have a bit of a bias.

Serena Valentino’s Mistress of All Evil, which is part of her villain series (I’ve read all the books in the series so far), earned points before I even read it. It also helps that Maleficent is my favorite Disney character. (I got the tattoo to prove it.)  Mistress of All Evil is partly the tale of Maleficent and how it fits in the grand scheme of a much bigger story.

Yet, this is not the story you know. It’s not as simple as the one in Sleeping Beauty, and it’s not about a terrible ex-boyfriend like in the live-action Maleficent. It’s the tale of someone who wanted to belong, be beloved, and in the end, protect the one she loved.

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Serena Valentino, who also writes horror stories, does an incredible job of showing you the layers of what makes a villain. Are they born evil, or do they become evil? Valentino does this by making you question who the villain in her stories is, which is done cleverly in Mistress of All Evil. She takes your natural bias with certain characters like The Fairy Godmother and The Three Good Fairies (I have a tattoo of the Fairy Godmother and Merryweather) and turns it on its head. By the end of the book, I considered covering up their tattoos.

If you really break Mistress of Evil all the way down, it’s a story about bias and perception. Maleficent had to overcome bias long before she was the villain; you think you know. She was once a girl, a teenager, and a plot twist: a mother. It wasn’t just the biases of others but the biases she had against herself. Now ask yourself; have you ever felt the same way, and if you have, does that make you a villain?

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I wouldn’t say I like going into spoilers about books. I feel it keeps you from having your own authentic experience when you read. What I will say is that there are many twists and turns throughout the story. You’ll enjoy cameos from a few Disney Princesses, Disney Villains, and Disney Fairies, as well as new characters who play important roles in this book series.

It is probably best to have read each book in Valentino’s Villains series to understand the overall story. However, if you want to learn the truth about Maleficent, you don’t need the other books to help you understand that part. The series is well-written, thought-provoking, engaging, and fresh. I would recommend it for tweens, teens, young adults, adults, or the Disney Lover in your life.

You can purchase Mistress of all Evil where ever books are sold online and in-store.

Who is your favorite Disney villain? Please share your favorite below in the comments and online via our socials.

About Yali Perez

When she's not writing about pop culture for Fandom Spotlite, curating social media for the*gameHERS, or helping to produce the DB4L podcast, she is a single mom to the coolest kid in the world. In Yali's free time she likes to bake, exercise, watch horror films, and play Mario Kart. Yali's goal as a writer is to share her nontraditional and colorful view of the world with readers everywhere.

View all posts by Yali Perez

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