“The Wood did strange things to humans, especially humans who had a distant touch of the fae within. It turned them from ordinary people into mad herm“The Wood did strange things to humans, especially humans who had a distant touch of the fae within. It turned them from ordinary people into mad hermits, cannibals who ate children thinking they were made of gingerbread, and people who swore thay had been asleep for one hundred years.”
I am an admin for a wonderful (extremely popular) book lover’s group on Facebook, and I decided to ‘use’ the members the other day.
I wanted a book that was whimsical, fairytale-like. Something escapist and reminiscent of the Grimms. I couldn’t have got a better recommendation from a member – and even better, it was listed in Kindle Unlimited , so no extra cost!
A young woman is found dead in the forest by the Woodcutter, only her chipped glass slippers hinting at her identity. The Woodcutter is the Keeper of the Peace, and guards the Wood which acts as a barrier between the Twelve Kingdoms of Man and the Realm Of The Fae. He needs to find the maiden’s killer and ensure that there are no other murderous plots afoot.
This book was exactly what I wanted – a tale of faery and whimsy. Beautifully written, the prose was evocative and could have been written any time in the last few hundred years.
The tale purposely played on the fairy tales that everyone is familiar with – Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Jack & The Beanstalk, Rapunzel etc. It became fun to try and work out who each character was before it was made obvious. The murderous plot could have just been another fairytale wound in amongst the others – and indeed it was.
I think many people forget just how violent and gruesome the actual Grimm’s tales were before they became Disneyfied. Danley manages to make her story beautiful, yet violent and cruel, showcasing the best and the worst of people.
I know that this wont be for everyone, but if you’re prone to a bit of whimsy, a bit of magic and a bit of the fairy dust with your murders, this is a fantastic yet easy read – and look how gorgeous that cover is!...more
I received this as a review copy in exchange for an honest review. I must admit, when I first saw it, I was expecting a full length novel, but at justI received this as a review copy in exchange for an honest review. I must admit, when I first saw it, I was expecting a full length novel, but at just 137 pages, it is most definitely just a short novella.
The blurb states that the girls of Class 2B have been perfecting the art of fainting. I found this first line really intriguing, as I did the first part of the story.
Esther, like many girls in her class have been holding their breath or hyperventilating and competing amongst themselves to see who can be the first to pass into a graceful faint.
Although set in North England, for some reason, this had a whiff of the Japanese about it – I could imagine it being a typical Japanese schoolgirl obsession, so the juxtaposition with hearty English girls compared to my internal pictures made it even more compelling. I really wanted to know more about the schoolgirls, why they had ALL started doing this, what made them continue, how they practiced, but we only followed Esther’s story, and the story left school and followed her through relationships and her life where she continued the practice.
I did enjoy the gentle following of what on the surface was the life of a ‘normal’ young girl leaving home and seeking her own place in the world through varying relationships, coming to terms with the circumstances surrounding her mother’s death and her interaction with her father. However, I felt that the auto-asphyxiation part of it was just an addition to add an interesting element to a rather dull character.
I would have loved more of the group mentality surrounding it, rather than following Esther alone.
An unusual, interesting little story, but not one that I think will stay with me particularly. ...more