E.A.'s Reviews > Deathless

Deathless by Catherynne M. Valente
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bookshelves: fantasy, historical, novel, re-telling-fairytale-myth

I started this book in the middle of winter, read 40 pages, then left it on my nightstand for months. Once I returned to it, I very much enjoyed the read. I can always count on Valente for beautiful, stylized language and sharply-rendered characters. She also has a way of leading me on with little surprises waiting around the corners, layering in gorgeously horrible details about Leningrad during the war. I appreciated the structural motifs (the triplicate repetitions, the Russian folktale textual cues, etc), however, I couldn’t connect the thematic motifs in a way that felt satisfying. I have no doubt the threads are there, but they never coalesced as I was reading, and I ended the book feeling like I didn’t understand the point she was trying to make. Not sure if I read it at the wrong time or if I’d always feel that way about it. Rather than read this one again, or even read any eventual sequels, I’d rather read Valente’s other novels I haven’t gotten to yet.

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Reading Progress

September 23, 2013 – Shelved
September 23, 2013 – Shelved as: to-read
February 1, 2019 – Started Reading
February 2, 2019 –
page 42
June 2, 2019 –
page 98
June 4, 2019 –
page 210
June 6, 2019 –
page 287
June 7, 2019 – Shelved as: fantasy
June 7, 2019 – Shelved as: historical
June 7, 2019 – Shelved as: novel
June 7, 2019 – Shelved as: re-telling-fairytale-myth
June 7, 2019 – Finished Reading

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