Josephina's Reviews > The Rose Bride: A Retelling of "The White Bride and the Black Bride"

The Rose Bride by Nancy Holder
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This is definitely not the best of the Once Upon a Time stories. I confess I'm not terribly familiar with the original fairy tale. I know I've read it before, but I don't really remember it.

I've found this series in general to be rather hit-or-miss, and this book was definitely in the latter category. It had potential, and there were even some things I enjoyed about it. I liked some of the imagery, for example.

I'll admit that the writing style threw me quite a bit. I'm actually a huge fan of Greek mythology, but my brain somehow refused to wrap itself around the mythology in this book. It seemed fairly contradictory.

In parts, I found the author seemed to try a little too hard to be "flowery" with her prose. I am a reasonably intelligent adult, or so I flatter myself, but there were some paragraphs I had to re-read to get a sense of what was going on.

The very first chapter is Prologue, and it begins, "In the Land Beyond...Crown Prince Jean-Marc, son of His Royal Majesty Henri III, Heir to the Throne of the Land Beyond, Beloved of Zeus...Now, maybe it's because I've just re-read the Percy Jackson series, but I had to sit and wonder if this was supposed to be a "real" world event of if the Land Beyond should be considered to exist as a part of mythology, itself. Like this world's Lane of Faerie. Every time the kingdom was named, my brain wanted to interpret it as some Other land, apart from the world in which the book was set. I don't know why, except that I think that the clash of cultures was something that my mind flatly refused to accept.

It's not a bad book. It is filled with Very Bad Things that happen to the heroine. There are many, many Very Bad Things. I confess I skimmed through many pages, as I found the book dragged a bit. Partly, no doubt, because the strange clash of cultures and my brain's insistence upon interpreting the Land Beyond as a realm of fairy people or something...well, it made it hard to get into the book.

I'm also not a huge an of some of the prose, as I said, which certainly didn't help.

It is not a bad book, honestly, it just wasn't my cup of tea. So far, it was my least favorite of the Once Upon a Time books, and I'm quite glad to be through it.
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Monica My thoughts exactly. Except I think Beauty Sleep was worse.


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