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(Two Monarchies Sequence #1)

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  558 ratings  ·  122 reviews
An alternate cover for this ASIN can be found here.

She’s not a princess . . . but then, he’s no prince.

Polyhymnia is deep in enchanted sleep. High in a tower, behind an impenetrable barrier of magical thorns, she sleeps, dreams, and falls ever deeper into her curse.
Woken by a kiss, Poly finds herself in an alien world where three hundred years have passed and everyone sh
Kindle Edition, 300 pages
Published August 10th 2015 by Amazon Digital Services
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Showing 1-30
4.05  · 
Rating details
 ·  558 ratings  ·  122 reviews

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Sylvia Mercedes
I'm offering a giveaway for a paperback copy of this AMAZING book on my website! Along with a hardbound copy of "Strange the Dreamer," another incredible read. Visit my page to enter the giveaway. Open to everyone, including internationals!

So you know how I said I read HOWL'S MOVING CASTLE as a kid, loved it, and now spend my reading life trying to find books that can somehow recapture THAT feeling?

W.R. Gingell's Spindle is, BY FAR, the closest thing I've found to match!

It's certainly not th
Lauren (Shakespeare & Whisky)
Awesome indie book. First few chapters where a little rough. But as it went along the story was engaging enough to override the poor prose. This is the second time recently I have read and loved an indie book. (The other is The Silence of Medair and you should check it out as well).

The story was sweet and funny, the relationship between Onepiece and Poly was a delight and the dialogue, after an indifferent beginning, gets very snappy and funny once the author is in her stride.

Will fix up later,
Tressa (Wishful Endings)
I think I just found a new favorite author. I loved Spindle that much! I've been thinking about how to put into words this crazy, eccentric, magical, steady roller-coaster (yep, those two descriptors don't make sense when you read them like that, but if you read this story you would understand) story and failing at the exact proper words. I will do my best.

The characters. I loved Poly. She is Luck's rock to his crazy forgetfulness (although it's really more of a focus that he has because his bra
Are you sitting down? Make sure you're sitting down. I'm going to say something a little crazy. You ready? Good. Here goes:

This reminds me of Howl's Moving Castle more than any other book I've read, and it's almost as good.

(Note to Deborah O'Carroll, if she happens to see this: READ THIS BOOK. You're going to love it. TRUST ME.)

I'm trying not to overhype Spindle because there's no better way to kill a book than to go into it expecting that it'll miraculously make your life a hundred times better
Intisar Khanani
This story had an almost dreamy quality to it, and while you figure out the villain early on, just how things will come together, and what exactly the curse is doing to Poly and why, will keep you guessing. I could have wished for a slightly stronger conclusion to the curse itself, but the story as a whole had a lovely (and humorous) climax. Another enjoyable read from Gingell!

Actual Rating: 3.5 stars
Jan 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: readers who enjoy fantasy in the European fairy tale tradition
I got this on the strength of enjoying Twelve Days of Fairy, so I checked the author's website and thought this one sounded really good.

It's a riff off Sleeping Beauty with a magic system all its own, but very much based on the European fairy tale tradition, although Fae don't make an appearance in this book. There's a cool twist on who the Sleeping Beauty actually is and who awakens her, and because it's all interconnected her missing memories are not mcguffins but necessary to the development
Kirsty (Amethyst Bookwyrm)
Thanks to W R Gingell for giving me this book to review.

Poly has been woken by a kiss after she has been asleep for 300 years, but the man who woke her, Luck is not a prince but then Poly isn’t a princess either. Poly cannot figure out who would want to curse her and why, why she has no memories of the day she went to sleep and how come her hair keeps on growing at an extraordinary rate. With someone trying to kill her and Luck, will Poly be able to figure out why she was cursed in time. As poly
MB (What she read)
That was a lot of fun to read, with a lot of creativity. It had a distinctly Diana Wynne-Jones flair to it.

Added later:
I'm still wondering about Onepiece. (view spoiler)
(view spoiler)
Denae Christine
Feb 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing
New and familiar

The end felt jumbled together rather than exactly satisfying, but I loved everything else!

Reader thoughts: This book is a LOT like Howl's Moving Castle. In both, the girl is keeping a secret, the boy is a powerful/self-interested wizard trying to break her spell, she has to save him, he has magical doorways, she has magic she doesn't understand, he pretends to visit ladies in order to break the curse, she finds a dog person, he never explains enough, she's not as old as she looks
Apr 17, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
Reread this again last week, because I wanted to read the rest of the series. Actually, I wanted to read something light and fun, so I read the entire series. This one might be my favourite of the trilogy. I enjoy the mythology in it, and how it's done. Also, Poly is awesome, and I like her dynamic with Luck (even if he is annoying). Also, Isabelle is my favourite, and I'd forgotten her introduction in this one.


I seriously enjoy how W.R. Gingell writes. Are there flaws? Yes. Is the magic syst
Sage Knightly
Jul 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
*I received a free physical arc of this book from the author, in exchange for an honest review. (Sorry it took so long!)
**Also posted on my blog Fishing For Books.

Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

This book is incredible, as is the author. It took me far too long to finally read Spindle as I got much busier than expected, but now I have read it and I can say it's definitely worth a re-read. I rarely re-read books.

The characters in this novel are so lovely you can't help but fall in love with them! They're w
Margaret Standafer
3.5 Stars

After reading for a few minutes, it was clear to me I would never have the type of imagination required to write a story such as Spindle, by W.R. Gingell. After reading for a little longer, I started to worry I didn’t have the type of imagination required to even read such a story. Spindle is a wild fairytale that chronicles the adventures of Poly, a princess (maybe!) woken after being under a spell for three hundred years, and Luck, the sorcerer who wakes her. Poly doesn’t remember muc
Heather Hayden
Mar 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I couldn't sleep last night, so I decided to keep reading Spindle, which I'd started yesterday afternoon during some cold-enforced downtime. It has a very Diana Wynne Jones's kind of feel to it (it reminded me a bit of Howl's Moving Castle), and as Jones is one of my favorite authors, I was delighted to find another author with a similar voice. Luck reminds me in some ways of Howl, but he has his own scatterbrained way of going about things, and Poly reminds me of Sophie, in that they're both ra ...more
Whoah. I definitely read this last year sometime, but didn't log it. Strange.

SPINDLE is another hilarious read from WR Gingell! You've got a girl who keeps falling asleep, a magician with a lot in common with Howl, a dog that is also occasionally an adorable small boy, and even a cameo from Isabella, my favourite Gingell character ever. It's a lot of fun!
J.M. Stengl
I absolutely loved this one!
A sleeping beauty retelling like none other, filled with magic and mystery.
The opening can be confusing, since we experience it through the eyes of the heroine while she awakens from an enchanted sleep, and into a time and reality she didn't expect.
I love Poly--our talented, plucky, strong-willed heroine who has to figure things out with almost no help. I adore Luck, who would no doubt drive me crazy in real life but is a marvelous fantasy hero! And One-piece. Who cou
Cherry (_forevermint)
Jul 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
"How long have I been asleep? I only meant to have a little rest because of the Midsummer Night Festival."
Luck slid her a narrow-eyed look. "My time scales are relative, but even I don't call three hundred years a little rest."

In Spindle, W.R. Gingell takes the fairytale Sleeping Beauty and creates a story that's overflowing with magic, taking the reader on a journey across a fantasy land, falling in and out of reality right alongside the heroine all the while a curse looms over her head and fa
Oct 29, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, fairytales

Spindle is a retelling of the story of Sleeping Beauty.
One that spans form the minute our "princess" Poly is awakened, rudely, by a kiss. She was put under a spell long ago and you'd think being awoken solves everything, but things only get more strange and complicated from there forward. Why are people trying to kill Poly and Luck, the wizard who broke the spell? Why are they running, from whom, why can't Poly remember so many things about her past? What leads to her lying
Elisabeth Wheatley
Like everything by Gingell, this was a splendid book that had me simultaneously laughing and hanging on the edge of my seat. The banter was biting, the suspense thrilling, and the plot as twisty and turny as tangled thread.

The plot:

Twisty, as I mentioned. I absolutely love how these books sweep you through the world and the story. Hundreds of pages seem to pass in the blink of an eye and suddenly the book is over and you’ve reached the Happily Ever After and…sigh. The world has that familiar Di
Seriously, the best fantasy book I've read in a while. Clever, refreshing, surprising, and totally delightful!

Be prepared to be confused right along with the heroine during the opening chapters--but the confusion is well worth the delight of discovery when those loose threads begin to tie together. I loved Poly and Luck and Onepiece and look forward to seeing Melchior in the next book. It was also fun to see Isabella (from Masque) as a young girl.

I agree with other reviewers who liken this book
katayoun Masoodi
Apr 05, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook, fantasy
3 1/2 but i really enjoyed this story and so it's showing as 4. looking forward to reading the second book and would recommend this to everyone.
mind it's not amazing, as in dwj or hardinge, it's standard but with a nice flow, likeable characters and feel good feeling at the end.
Apr 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Having read a previous book by this author (Masque) in which I found her prose sparkling and her characters delightfully quirky, I wanted to try this one, which seemed to be a retelling of Sleeping Beauty. There is a curse, and the main character Polyhymnia (Poly) is awakened after sleeping for 300 years by the kiss of a handsome....enchanter named Luck. There the resemblance to Sleeping Beauty ends. The story is as weird as Alice in Wonderland in places, and so I almost put the book down (I've ...more
Aug 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, reviewed
Generally, I'm easy to please when it comes to books. If it's interesting enough and the writing style and I get along, then I'll be happy. But the books I enjoy the most, are the ones so incredibly unique, plot-wise, character-wise, and world-wise. Characters are eccentric, the plot is like nothing I've seen before and the world is so far from ours that it's almost breathtaking.
This was one of those books.
Poly has just been woken up from a three hundred year nap by Luck, an enchanter. But she
Sophia Hansen
Apr 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Spindle is an engaging tale full of magic and manipulation. A bit of a challenge to keep the threads sorted in the beginning, but a beautiful payoff in the end when the whole tapestry is revealed. My journey from start to finish is much like Poly's - tantalizing and sometimes frustrating as bits and pieces are revealed, but not enough to allow me to get a firm hold on what's really going on until it's done. I smell the chocolate, I want the chocolate, but I don't have my hands on it yet.
As impor
Not very long ago, I was introduced to W.R. Gingell’s writing through her book Masque, and I was immediately enchanted by her writing and her characters. Masque was fun, creative, and hilarious and to date has one of my absolute favorite heroines. I wasn’t disappointed when I picked up Spindle expecting the same awesomeness I experienced in Masque.
Quick overview: Poly has been asleep in a castle tower for 300 years. She’s no princess despite what everyone thinks, but that’s okay, because her sa
Jan 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Why does this book not have more reviews!? It's wonderfully reminiscent of Diana Wynne Jones- magical, funny, mysterious and exciting. Very glad I randomly found it at my public library. Why am I not seeing Book 2?
Ann Brookens
Mar 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Fairytale awry

Take a classic fairytale curse and begin the story at the moment the curse is broken, rather than starting in the victim's childhood. Then follow the hapless victim as she tries to figure out "what happened" and " why". Gingell makes it work beautifully. I loved this take on the Sleeping Beauty story and intend to check out the rest of her books!
Candice Allen
Mar 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic fantasy

A fresh take on sleeping beauty with twists and turns to delight the mind and engage your imagination. Loved it. Onepiece is my favorite...
Mar 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I honestly love this book so much
For as rocky as this book started, I was absolutely astounded at how quickly I became enthralled with it. I'd heard the beginning was a little rough so I made the decision early on to stick with it for a bit and I'm so glad I did.

What began as a whirlwind of nonsense and poorly explained concepts soon became a quirky book with lovable characters and a smart plot. Having the magic represented so differently really threw me for a while but after you get used to it, it really does seem genius.

Suprada Urval
Love it.
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Dec 23, 2015 11:09AM  
  • The Legendary Inge
  • The Spinner and the Slipper
  • The Firethorn Crown (Firethorn Chronicles, #1)
  • Golden Daughter (Tales of Goldstone Wood, #7)
  • Five Magic Spindles
  • The Thorn and the Sinking Stone
  • The Beast of Talesend (Beaumont and Beasley, #1)
  • The Songbird Girls (Detective Tom Fabian #2)
  • A Midwinter's Wedding: A Retelling of The Frog Prince (The Four Kingdoms, #3.5)
  • The Wulver's Rose
  • The Reaper's Daughter
  • Something Hidden (Andrew Hunter, #2)
  • Unwritten
  • Threads of Gold (Tales of the Latter Kingdoms, #6)
  • Martyr
  • Cat's Tale: A Fairy Tale Retold
W.R. Gingell is a Tasmanian author who lives in a house with a green door. She spends her time reading, drinking an inordinate amount of tea, and slouching in front of the fire to write. Like Peter Pan, she never really grew up, and is still occasionally to be found climbing trees.

Other books in the series

Two Monarchies Sequence (4 books)
  • Blackfoot (Two Monarchies Sequence, #2)
  • Staff & Crown (Two Monarchies Sequence, #3)
  • Masque (Two Monarchies Sequence)