Tiger's Curse by Colleen Houck

Houck, C. (2011). Tiger’s Curse. Great Britain: Hodder & Stoughton.

ISBN-13: 978-1402784033

Genre: Fantasy, Animals, Magic, Romance

Reading level/ interest age: 15+

Plot summary:

Three hundred years ago two brothers were cursed to change into tigers and only allowed thirty minutes a day to transform back as humans. Kelsey happens to meet one of the bothers, Ren, during her job at a traveling circus. She takes an interest in him as a tiger but the circus receives an offer from a man named Mr. Kadam to sell Ren.  Kelsey is distraught until Mr. Kadam asks if she would like to escort Ren back to India to be released the in the wild. Kelsey agrees and they arrive in Mumbai. Mr. Kadam tells Kelsey to get something to eat but when she leaves the restaurant, Mr. Kadam has vanished and she sees Ren was left in a crate to the side of the road. Kelsey decides to release Ren and tries unsuccessfully to resist the urge to follow him into the jungle. Ren leads her to a hut where he transforms into a human. He quickly explains his curse to her before changing back. The owner of the hut is a medicine man who tells Kelsey she was meant to help Ren break the curse and sends them off to a temple to seek answers.

Reader’s annotation:

A simple kiss isn’t going to be enough to break the curse on this prince. What has Kelsey gotten herself into?

Information about the author:

“Colleen Houck was born in Tuscan, AZ on October 3, 1969. She went to Henry Elementary, Gridley Middle, and Sahauro High School before attending Rick’s College (later renamed Brigham Young University – Idaho) in Rexburg, Idaho, where she attained her Elementary Education associate’s degree. She met her husband, Bradley Houck, by going on a mission for her church and serving deaf people using ASL – American Sign Language. They met in the Missionary Training Center. A few years of playing cat and mouse later, they were married.

“She’d been inspired by Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer (people, don’t groan or snicker – you know you liked the story too) and, after getting sick of waiting year after year for other books to come out, she grabbed a pen, paper, and started writing. Voila, the tiger princes were born!” (EDUBlogs.com, 2014).

Curriculum ties: N/A

Booktalking ideas:

1.       Would you have followed a tiger into the jungle?
2.       What would you have done after Ren told you about his curse?

Critical evaluation:

Tiger’s Curse is a good transition book from juvenile fiction to young adult. There is a heavy focus on Ren as a tiger and his relationship with Kelsey is relatively tame. With such a large amount dedicated to Ren as a tiger, this could appeal to readers who are interested in animals. Sadly, Tiger’s Curse is not all that well written and at times, the reader can have a hard time believing the story enough to get into it. Kelsey’s parents letting her travel to India with a stranger is hard to accept as well as her ability to trek long distances through the jungles of India. Despite having some difficulty getting into the book, readers can rest assured that their time is well spent delving into this series. The author develops as a writer in later books and the quests become more complex and interesting. Tiger’s Curse is a light-hearted novel great for young readers.

Challenge issues: N/A

Why included:

The Tiger’s Curse series was based off of Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer and both series have a large focus on animals. I think that this book is a great transition from juvenile literature to the young adult genre. 


EDUBlogs.com. (2014). Meet the Author. Retrieved August 22, 2014 from

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