Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones: Book Review

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Title: Wintersong

Author: S. Jae-Jones

Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books (Macmillan)

My Rating: 4.25/5 stars

Format/Source: US hardcover from my local library

Coming from a family as musically-inclined as hers, it’s only natural that eighteen-year-old Elisabeth, more affectionately called Liesl, dreams of becoming a composer. A female musician, however, is definitely not natural. Society would most certainly look down on her.

In addition to that hindrance, Liesl already suffers from a severe lack of confidence in her music. She was never encouraged and educated with the same care as her brother, Josef, so instead she hides her dreams away in a locked box that lives under her bed.

“The wishes we make in the dark have consequences, and the Lord of Mischief will call their reckoning.”

All her life, Liesl has always put herself last. As the oldest child in her family, it’s always been her job to look out for her younger siblings–her beautiful, golden-haired sister and foil, Käthe; and Josef, her brother with whom she shares an intense, almost unearthly, bond.

This bond is actually where Liesl’s troubles begin. By favoring one sibling, she has neglected the other and put her in danger. 

“Once there was a little girl who played her music for a little boy in the wood. She was small and dark, he was tall and fair, and the two of them made a fancy pair as they danced together, dancing to the music the little girl heard in her head.”

When Käthe goes missing, Liesl immediately knows just who is responsible for her sister’s disappearance. The boy that she used to play with in the Goblin Grove near her house. The boy who was not actually a boy at all, but Der Erlkönig. The Goblin King of legend. The cruel Lord of Mischief.

“I could not tell what color his eyes were from where I stood, but they were likewise pale, and icy. The Goblin King tilted his head in a duelist’s nod and gave me a small smile, the tips of his teeth sharp and pointed. I clenched my fists. I knew that smile. I recognized it, and understood it as a challenge.

Come rescue her, my dear, the smile said. Come and rescue her…if you can.”

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Who Wrote It Better: Rosamund Hodge vs. Sarah J. Maas

Similar to the popular magazine “Who Wore It Better?” columns, “Who Wrote It Better?” is where I compare two books or series that share a similar plot, setting, background, or subject matter.

First up in the “Who Wrote It Better” saga (*click the titles for their Goodreads links*):

Rosamund Hodge‘s Cruel Beauty vs. Sarah J. MaasA Court of Thorns and Roses

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My Rating: 4/5 stars
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My Rating: 2.5/5 stars

 

 

 

 

 

VS

 

 

 

 

By my ratings, I think you can tell which I enjoyed more, but here in this post I will explain why. You can also consider this a recommendation; if you enjoyed one, you may enjoy the other. 😉

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Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman: Book Review

Norse Mythology

Title: Norse Mythology

Author: Neil Gaiman 

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

My Rating: 5/5 stars

As much as I love mythology, I actually know nothing about Norse mythology. I haven’t even seen Marvel’s recent Thor movies–not that they count; I’m just trying to explain how truly little I know–so when I heard one of my favorite authors was putting together a collection of Norse mythology, I knew just where I was going to start. Thank you, Almighty Neil Gaiman.

“The Norse myths are the myths of a chilly place, with long, long winter nights and endless summer days, myths of a people who did not entirely trust or even like their gods, although they respected and feared them.”

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Drown by Esther Dalseno: Book Review

Drown

Title: Drown: A Twisted Take on a Classic Fairy Tale

Author: Esther Dalseno

Publisher: Three Little Birds Books

My Rating: 5/5 stars

“Seven emotionless princesses.
Three ghostly sirens.
A beautiful, malicious witch haunted by memories.
A handsome, self-mutilating prince.”

And with that quote right there, I knew I had stumbled upon something special. I found Drown in my Goodreads recommendations and although it normally takes a trusted reviewer for me to pick up a book, I decided to take a chance on this one. And, oh boy, am I glad I did. Somehow it only has a hundred or so reviews on Goodreads, and that really needs to change. So here I am.

Drown is a dark re-telling of The Little Mermaid, but not the Disney version. No, you won’t find any talking flounder or composing crabs here.

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Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier: Book Review

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Title: Daughter of the Forest

Author: Juliet Marillier

Series: Sevenwaters

Publisher: Tor Books

My Rating: 5/5 stars

**Sidenote: This is actually the first review I ever wrote, but I somehow forgot to post it on my other shared blog, so it seems only fitting that it be my first on here. It’s rare that I give out five-star ratings anymore, as it is only my absolute favorites that get full stars, but this rating still stands. 🙂


Daughter of the Forest is the first of six in Juliet Marillier’s historical fantasy series Sevenwaters. With a Celtic medieval setting, this first installment is based on both the German fairy tale “The Six Swans” and the Irish “Children of Lir” legend.

If you are familiar with those tales, you have an idea of where the story is going. It involves, of course, an evil stepmother, a wicked curse, a charming love interest, and an impossible task that must be completed. Okay, maybe you just need basic knowledge of how fairy tales work.

“You will find the way, daughter of the forest. Through grief and pain, through many trials, through betrayal and loss, your feet will walk a straight path.”

Continue reading “Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier: Book Review”