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(The Red Abbey Chronicles #1)

3.76  ·  Rating details ·  1,947 Ratings  ·  439 Reviews
Maresi came to the Red Abbey when she was thirteen, in the Hunger Winter. Before then, she had only heard rumours of its existence in secret folk tales. In a world where girls aren't allowed to learn or do as they please, an island inhabited solely by women sounded like a fantasy. But now Maresi is here, and she knows it is real. She is safe.

Then one day Jai tangled fair h
Paperback, 256 pages
Published January 5th 2017 by Pushkin Press (first published 2014)
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Community Reviews

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Rating details
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Mar 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017, ya, starred-2017, fantasy, 1
Pretty dark for YA fantasy (Margo Lanagan dark), but refreshingly different.

Excellent import from Finland and a lovely translation.
Jan 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A novice at an island Abbey finds her destiny when a new arrival brings trouble in her wake.

Maresi is a novice at the Red Abbey on the island of Menos where men are forbidden and where the Sisterhood reveres the First Mother. Maresi is one of the older novices and will soon move onto what comes after. Then Jai, a young girl with an horrific past arrives and Maresi takes her under her wing. But Maresi has issues from her own past as well and it looks like there's going to be a collision between M
Jan 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017-read
4.5 stars

This book starts off slow and descriptive, but then becomes utterly harrowing. I loved the clear and innocent voice of Maresi, who narrates the story, giving it a highly personal feel.

It is an emotionally stirring book, which highlights the fears and strengths of the women in the story, reminding me in its feel of parts of The Mists of Avalon. Highly recommended.
Jan 10, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
2.5 stars - I was disappointed in this. It had a ton of potential. I loved the premise of a safe island for women/girls only who were abused or damaged in some way and needed to heal. This should have a short story there just wasn't enough here to make a novel. It is the first in a series but I doubt it's one I will continue to read.
Viv JM
3.5 stars

I don't read much YA but I felt like I needed a bit of a palate cleanser and I loved the premise of this book. For me, it wasn't quite the "thrilling, suspenseful and gloriously feminist" book that the blurb promised, but it was a diverting enough read.

I enjoyed the mythology of the Mother/Maiden/Crone and the descriptions of abbey life, as well as the emphasis on female friendship and co-operation, but I felt that there wasn't really quite enough character development. The language fe
I received an Advance Reader Copy from the publisher. This in no way impacted on my view.

I first heard about this book through some bloggers via Twitter. Because I trust their judgement on books, I decided to try and request a copy, and was lucky enough to receive one. I had next to no knowledge what the book was actually about, other than the fact this was it's first time being published in English, rather than its native Finnish. Most of reviews I've since seen have been extremely complimentar
DNF on page 195

I went into this book completely blind. I had seen some talk on Twitter about it and I was fairly excited about it.

Maresi is a bland character. She is loyal to the Abbey and the sisters who live/work there, but there isn't much more I can say about her. There are a lot a lot a lot of characters and some are mentioned without ever being talked about again.

As for the plot, it was soooooooo slooooooow. There isn't any sort of conflict until it's almost over and even that seemed str
Bee (Heart Full of Books)
What an enchanting read! Everyone was telling me that it had fairytale vibes, and I totally agree! It's perfect if you want to experience the same kind of vibes from the His Fair Assassin trilogy, or something like The Sin Eater's Daughter.
Jun 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow! Tas bija maģiski! Skaisti, drūmi un šausminoši, bet tomēr maģiski. Tā matu ķemmēšana man vēl ilgi paliks atmiņā.
Aug 08, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
"There’s this habit in this book of making all men look powerful and strong but also mean and sexist and all women look pure, innocent and fragile. And yes, the book is written mostly with the intention to show us how women are strong and capable of doing just as much as men but the world is not always this or that, positive and negative, there’s so much to an individual than just evil or just good."

Read more of my review on my blog post -

Follow my
Cora ☕ Tea Party Princess
5 Words: Faith, hope, learning, magic, friendship.

Hands down the best fantasy I have read in a long time.

I think this is one of those books where you either love it or feel a bit Meh after reading. I definitely loved it, but I can see why some people wouldn't like it.

This was a very subtle fantasy - if not for the magic and technology it could almost have been set now, in this world. There was no cookie-cutter plot with a Mary Sue main character. Instead there was complex plot with mixed yet nat
Mai Laakso
Upea Maresi. Punaisen luostarin kronikoita on Maria Turtschaninoffin fantasiamaailmaan sijoittuva Finlandia-Juniorpalkinnon vuonna 2014 voittanut nuortenkirja.
Päähenkilö Maresi on asunut seitsemän vuotta luostarissa, joka sijaitsee saarella. Saarelle on miehiltä pääsy kielletty. Eräänä päivänä saarelle saapuu arka ja säikky tyttö, joka kiinnittyy Maresiin. Maresi haluaisi vain lukea ja etsiä tietoa kirjoista, mutta pian hän tottuu Jain seuraan, sillä Jai lukee myös.
Eräänä päivänä merellä näkyi
May 26, 2016 rated it liked it
I feel like cult books are really on trend at the moment! This definitely had the vibes of 'Soundless' by Richelle Mead and 'Only Ever Yours' by Louise O'Neill. It's an odd mixture, but one I can get behind!
Nov 23, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ļoti nopietns YA, drīzāk meditatīvs fantāzijas trilleris jaunām un vecām sievietēm.
Brīnišķīga valoda, bagātīga pasaule. Pietiekami daudz pārdomu par sievietes būtību - ne par daudz, ne par maz.
Elīna Jurberga
detalizēti uzbūvēta pasaule, izteikta ar brīnišķīgi veidotu valodu. fantāzijās radīta pasaule, kura šķietami norāda mazliet arī uz to, kurā dzīvojam.
šis bija jaudīgi. tik ļoti, ka trūkst pat sakāmā.
Katy Noyes
2.5 stars

Translated from the Swedish original. First in a series of three.

This was a very short read, which may be why I persisted, but I did finish thinking “What was the point of it?”

I like dystopia, I like powerful female characters, I like Old World / otherworld stories. This sat uneasily with me.

I did like it more at the start – a young girl is telling us her story of when a new girl comes to her island sanctuary and trouble follows her.

The trouble (in the form of men) comes in a rather vi
Sian Lile-Pastore
Feb 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: young-adult
Ooo, I thought this was really different and interesting. It reminded me (in feel) of The Wickerman and The Handmaid's Tale.

It's set on an island that's only inhabited by women - and these women take in young girls who may have been abused or just find themselves there and get taken in. There's a lot of world building and a lot about their day to day life - cooking, herbalism, reading, dying clothes with dye taken from snails - and I really loved all of that. And then there's also this underlyin
Cheryl DeFranceschi
The first book in a YA trilogy, this book about a society of women kicked ass. The Red Abbey offers refuge to girls who have been abused or need food and shelter. They can learn to read, learn medicine, farming and sisterhood. It is a sacred and powerful place. So what happens when evil, barbaric men show up, looking for the daughter who escaped her father's cruelty? I'm not going to tell you! You'll have to read it for yourself. I can't wait until the next book.
Vilja / Kirjaneito
Nov 20, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2015
Hieno, vangitseva kirja. Finlandia Juniorinsa ansainnut!
Jan 03, 2017 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Izabela Mizia
Aug 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rzadko zdarza mi się czytać fantasy dla młodzieży, ale gdy już to robię trafiam na takie perełki jak "Gdzie niebo mieni się czerwienią" albo właśnie "Maresi". Pełna uroku i magii opowieść o sile kobiet w czasach pełnych przemocy. Zakochałam się w tych barwnych, delikatnych opisach Czerwonego Klasztoru, morza, wierzchołków gór i zapachu drewna.
Virginie (chouettblog)
It is hard to believe first hand that Maresi’s world is one of Fantasy, as it is still reminiscent of our world today at least for some countries.

Welcome to the Red Abbey, a sanctuary built by 8 women, sisters fleeing from persecution far away from a world where education is awarded only to men, and where their fate is not theirs to master.
Any new novice coming to the Red Abbey, will not only be granted protection, but will also share into the teachings of an ancient and sacred magic now long lo
Matti Karjalainen
Maria Turtschaninoffin "Maresi: Punaisen luostarin kronikoita" (Tammi, 2014) on Finlandia Junior -palkittu romaani syrjäisellä saarella sijaitsevasta luostarista, jonne miehillä ei ole asiaa. Teoksen päähenkilö on tietoa janoava Maresi-tyttö, joka toimii myös kirjan minä-muotoisena kertojana.

Luostariin saapuu eräänä päivänä tyttö nimeltä Jai, jonka sisaren on oma isä tappanut kammottavalla tavalla, ja nyt häntäkin uhkaa sama kohtalo. Lukija voi halutessaan vetää yhtymäkohtia nykypäivän kunniamur
Sep 06, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 4-star, own

I really enjoyed Maresi and I loved the concept of a safe haven island for battered, unwelcome, and needy girls where they are taught valuable skills to survive in a world that is cruel to them. I loved it so much that I wish Turtschaninoff took the pains to expand it into a longer narrative. While enjoyable, Maresi is short and simplistic, so a lot of it - especially the world building, character development, and exposition felt summarized and at times told more than it showed while only hal
Feb 23, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Gosh, this is a hard one to review. I liked the start, and the whole concept, but then the story took forever to take off, and the eventual action was predictable and well, kind of boring. Awks. Anywho, I generally don't have much to say about this one except for how slow and boring it was. It was simple, I was bored, but it's done and I can move on. Two stars.
Jan 23, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: x01-january-2017
There were aspects of the setting/world I really liked, but overall the story was just OK.
Irena Freitas
Apr 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Este livro foi perfeito. Mal posso esperar pelo segundo!
Kiran Hargrave
Brutal and beautiful, MARESI walks the knife edge so thrillingly I read it in one sitting. Embued with myth, wonder, and told with a dazzling, compelling ferocity. I can hardly wait for the next instalment.
A very quick read, but one that definitely took me by surprise with its depth and power. I have so many beautiful contradictions swirling in my mind after just finishing this, and it feels really inspiring. I am very much looking forward to reading Turtschaninoff's other works as well.
Apr 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Dieses Buch war phantastisch!

Der unschuldige Schreibstil und die liebevollen Charaktere haben mir sehr gefallen. Ebenso die Idylle der Insel, nach der man sich manchmal nur sehnen kann.
Faszinierend und besonders spannend empfand ich die Göttin, welche mehrere Gesichter inne hat und durch ihre Dienerinnen praktisch wirkt. Die Macht, die von ihr ausgeht, war beeindruckend.

Ich bin gespannt wie Maresis Geschichte weiter geht!
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The A&E Shelf: Maresi 1 6 Mar 12, 2017 08:18PM  
  • Kudottujen kujien kaupunki
  • Piraijakuiskaaja (Faunoidit, #2)
  • Kesytön (Susiraja, #1)
  • Toisaalla
  • Nokkosvallankumous
  • The Dark Light
  • Deep Water
  • Kädettömät kuninkaat ja muita häiritseviä tarinoita
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  • Sophie Someone
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Other books in the series

The Red Abbey Chronicles (3 books)
  • Naondel (Punaisen luostarin kronikoita #2)
  • Breven från Maresi (Röda klostret, #3)

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“She does not know how to feel safe.” As I said it I knew it was true. “We will have to teach her how.” 3 likes
“Att komma till Klostret och lära mig läsa var som att få ett stort fönster öppnat mot ljus och värme.” 0 likes
More quotes…