I haven't read a YA paranormal romance that I enjoyed in awhile, but this one was excellent. Nice worldbuilding, magic, and characters who all have agI haven't read a YA paranormal romance that I enjoyed in awhile, but this one was excellent. Nice worldbuilding, magic, and characters who all have agency, and a sort of love triangle that I didn't mind at all. (view spoiler)[Mostly because it's clear where she's going to end up, and you understand her feelings/attraction for both. (hide spoiler)]
Quibbles--there were a few too many flashbacks/cutting to the villain POV for my taste, to the point where it interrupted the flow of the story. I think the ending could have been smoothed out, too. But I quite enjoyed this overall, and totally recommend it if you're curious.
I think it would have been really interesting if this story had been written as a New Adult title, by the way. There are some nicely sparky scenes between our heroine and the two guys, and that could have been taken even further for an older age group.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
4.5 stars Well, clearly I'm going to be kicked out of the cool kids' club, because I fucking loved this book. A good reminder to always try things ou 4.5 stars Well, clearly I'm going to be kicked out of the cool kids' club, because I fucking loved this book. A good reminder to always try things out for yourself to see what you think.
The pacing and more introspective heroine will likely be issues for some readers (and I fully admit that I think this would have worked better as pure historical fantasy, rather than middle-ages-in-this-weird-future-time period), but I can tell you that these were not problems for me at all, being that I devoured all 400+ pages in 24 hours and am dyyyying for the next book.
Creepy, complex, genuinely frightening, thrilling, sad, and unbelievably tender and hushed and beautiful all at once. This is a dark, violent fairy taCreepy, complex, genuinely frightening, thrilling, sad, and unbelievably tender and hushed and beautiful all at once. This is a dark, violent fairy tale, it's a mystery, it's a fantasy, it's horror, it's historical, it's gothic, and it's also the story of a girl trying to find a place for herself among a grieving family torn apart by war. The family dynamics and sister relationship are so well done, as are the way the book handles loss and longing. And on top of that? Feminism and jazz and tea shops and plates and plates of cake! (view spoiler)[Not to mention shrieking dolls, shudder-inducing but poignant consumption of various things, and a fantastic play on the fears of parents re: changelings. (hide spoiler)]
I haven't read a middle grade book with this much nuance and wild imagination and feeling since The Golden Compass--and I'm betting those who liked Coraline or the original Grimm's fairy tales will like this. I was thrilled by the intense creepiness and dread of the mystery behind Triss' illness, I was outraged by what she has to endure, and I teared up over what was to become of her. Best read knowing as little about the plot as possible--just enjoy the wonderfully descriptive writing, the perfectly paced plot, and the experience of not knowing where the story will go next.
Love love love love love. And now I have to read everything else Frances Hardinge has ever written.
2.5 stars I was pretty determined to not compare this book to Marissa Meyer's fairy tale scifi series as I read it, because a. it's hardly the first t2.5 stars I was pretty determined to not compare this book to Marissa Meyer's fairy tale scifi series as I read it, because a. it's hardly the first to do a mash-up of genres and b. books deserve to be judged on their own merits. But it's pretty impossible not to see the similarities in Stitching Snow's tone and a few other elements to Cinder, except with characters and relationships that aren't quite as compelling, and a story line and dialogue and romance that don't really spark. It's going to be interesting to see how Meyer's fourth book Winter, which is also loosely based on "Snow White," compares when it comes out next year.
I really dislike "Essie" as a name, but I did like her as a character, though she's really the only one that's really of any interest. I think Kip could have been interesting, and maybe Laisa, but neither they nor the perfectly-fine-but-forgettable love interest Dane really ended up doing much for me.
I think this one's probably best suited for die-hard fairy tale retelling fans, or those who haven't yet read Meyer. Sorry for repeated references to the other series, but we do respond to books in the context of other things we've read, no? And unfortunately, for me, this one pales in comparison to The Lunar Chronicles.
An advance copy was provided by the publisher for this review....more
Lovely, if occasionally confusing. Loved the complexity of Nyx's relationships with her family, as well as her prickly defensiveness. This might haveLovely, if occasionally confusing. Loved the complexity of Nyx's relationships with her family, as well as her prickly defensiveness. This might have been even more interesting as an NA novel, I think, since marriage and seduction are such a central part of the story, but can't be explored quite as thoroughly as you could for an older audience.
Really enjoyed this, though. I listened the audiobook, and the narrator Elizabeth Knowelden has a beautiful voice and a style that is perfect for this story....more