liquid06's Reviews > The Ladies of Grace Adieu and Other Stories

The Ladies of Grace Adieu and Other Stories by Susanna Clarke
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's review
May 28, 2012

Read in August, 2011

Faerie is never as far away as you think. Sometimes you find you have crossed an invisible line and must cope, as best you can, with petulant princesses, vengeful owls, ladies who pass their time embroidering terrible fates or with endless paths in deep, dark woods and houses that never appear the same way twice.

I checked this book out of the library because Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell wasn't on the shelf and I was interested to read more of Susanna Clarke's work. I really enjoyed the stories in this book! They reminded me of stories I read as a child though they seem more eloquent than I would have been able to grasp.

In The Duke of Wellington Misplaces his Horse the Duke sees his fate of death in a duel drawn out before him and he must figure out how to change it...with no weapon but embroidery scissors. I found John Hollyshoes's prison of illusion in Mr. Simonelli or The Fairy Widower to be especially horrifying, and the disorientation and knowing that some things around you are illusions in Mrs. Mabb made the whole story feel like a dream. The guessing game of On Lickerish Hill reminded me of fables in some of the books I really loved as a child. And Tom Brightwind shows a portrayal of a fairy personality that doesn't show up in many other fairy stories.

After a steady diet of movies and games, the pace of these stories was really refreshing.

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