Friday, March 9, 2018

Mini-Reviews: Snow White Retellings

The Shadow Queen (Ravenspire #1) by C.J. Redwine (2016)

Princess Lorelai has been in hiding since her stepmother Irina used her magic to gain control of the kingdom of Ravenspire, but after years of watching Irina destroy the land and people, Lorelai knows it's time to make her move and take back her crown.  Irina, though, has enlisted Kol, newly-crowned king of Eldr, to hunt down Lorelai in exchange for her help in defeating the ogres destroying his own kingdom.

I was expecting this story to be a dark retelling of the Snow White tale, but unfortunately it was bland and unoriginal.  Lorelai is such a flat character, I found myself not really caring if she succeeded or not.  The huntsman aspect of the story is wasted, because Kol allies with Lorelai almost as soon as Irina unleashes him.  Many of the plot points felt like they were pulled from other sources, tv shows, and movies.  The writing isn't bad, but it is repetitive - how many times can an author use the word "slammed" in one book?

One thing that redeems this book a bit is Irina - I much preferred the chapters from her POV than from Lorelai's.  She's wicked in the best ways and just plain more interesting than the other characters.  I could have used more of her character!  2.5 stars

Girls Made of Snow and Glass by Melissa Bashardoust (2017)

A character-driven retelling of the classic Snow White story.  Princess Lynet has always admired her stepmother Mira, but when her father names Lynet as the new queen of the southern territories, the relationship between the two women is fractured.

The story moves back and forth between the points of view of Lynet and Mina, including flashbacks to earlier in Mina's life, allowing the reader to truly get to know each character.  Magic is infused in the story through Mina's father, who not only replaced his daughter's dying heart with a glass one, but created Lynet out of snow at her own father's command.

I thoroughly enjoyed Mina's character; she believes she is incapable of loving anything or being loved, yet there are moments in her life that would prove otherwise.  I liked that she wasn't the typical villainous stepmother; in fact, I don't think she was really a villain at all.  Her relationship with Lynet is complicated, but at the heart of it is love.  And as much as this story is about these two women, much can be said for the theme of father-daughter relationships, because both Mina and Lynet are treated so poorly by their controlling fathers.

The story moves extremely slowly and there isn't a lot of action, but those readers looking for a more elevated version of the Snow White tale won't be disappointed.  4 stars

40 comments:

  1. I have heard mixed things about "Girls Made of Snow and Glass", so I`m very happy I came across your review. Personally, I adore slow-burning, character driven books, and from the looks of it, I`ll really enjoy this retelling.


    Carmen`s Reading Corner

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, if that's the kind of book you're into, you will definitely like Girls Made of Snow and Glass!

      Delete
  2. I really wanted to read Girls Made of Snow and Glass when it came out but I still haven't even bought it at this point. I'm such a slacker!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Haha, well, it took me awhile to read these two, as well! So many books, not enough time!

      Delete
  3. I’m gonna be honest. When comes to retellings I am easy to please. I enjoyed the shadow queen. It want anything special but I enjoyed it. Haven’t read the other one. It’s on my list.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I have not read either of those yet, but I do enjoy retellings and hope to eventually get around to them <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, I've been getting into retellings lately - hope you enjoy them!

      Delete
  5. Glad you enjoyed one of these! I am hit or miss with retellings myself.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, there are a lot of things that can make or break a retelling!

      Delete
  6. Ooh, perfect timing for this post! I was just talking to someone about how I wish there were more Snow White-inspired stories/retellings, so these are great. I've heard a lot of similar sentiments about The Shadow Queen, so I'm super skeptical of whether or not I'll actually pick it up--I love dark retellings (probably too much), so that's a bit of a disappointment. I am very intrigued by Girls Made of Snow and Glass, so I do think I'll pick it up. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awesome!! Glad I could bring these to you. Hope you enjoy Girls Made of Snow and Glass!

      Delete
  7. I adore retellings, and I've heard mixed things about both these books. I love the premise, but I think Girls made of Snow and Glass will be too slow for me :( I love action, haha.
    A pity about The Shadow Queen! I love that cover :)

    Great reviews!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Amy! I do normally like plot-driven over character-driven, but sometimes it works for me!

      Delete
  8. I haven't read either of these yet. The Shadow Queen is one that sounds amazing, but if it isn't very dark, maybe I will pass on it and just skip over to Girls Made of Snow and Glass instead. I am glad that you enjoyed the second book so much! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! Yeah, I would definitely recommend Girls over The Shadow Queen.

      Delete
  9. Confession: I have both these books. Second Confession: I have read neither. I am the worst. Reviews seem to be all over the place for these two. I am sorry to hear The Shadow Queen was a disappointment, but at least you enjoyed Girls Made of Snow and Glass.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Haha, that happens to all of us! They both do seem to have mixed reviews, but I hope you enjoy them when you get to them!

      Delete
  10. Sorry that The Shadow Queen didn't work for you! I haven't read a book by CJ Redwine for a while, and I enjoy her books, but this one doesn't peak my interest. I do love the sound of Girls Made of Snow and Glass though! Adding it to goodreads as I write. :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. Honestly, I'm so relieved to see your review of The Shadow Queen. I'd just started it and was already bored out of my mind. DNF it is!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, thank you!! I'm always happy to find someone else who agrees with me when I don't like a book!

      Delete
  12. Aw bummer about The Shadow Queen. Glad to hear that Girls was better though, even if a bit slow. there are so many fairy tale retellings now, seems like, but that's good I guess especially the ones that are really original.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, there does seem to be an influx of retellings lately, just a popular trend lately, I guess! But it does mean there's lots to choose from and lots of great ones out there!

      Delete
  13. I still need to check out Girls Made of Snow and Glass!!

    ReplyDelete
  14. I’ve seen mixed reviews for both of these. Girls Made of Snow and Glass definitely sounds worth a shot for me through. Great reviews!

    ReplyDelete
  15. What different Snow White retellings these are! I'm glad one out of two were good reads!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, they were very different from each other, which was good!

      Delete
  16. That's disappointing to hear that The Shadow Queen wasn't a better read for you. Bland and unoriginal would definitely bother me on a retelling so I think I'll pass on this one. I'm glad Girls Made of Snow and Glass worked better for you. I enjoyed that one as well, although I do agree that the pacing was somewhat slow at times.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, I had heard good things about The Shadow Queen, but it just didn't work for me. I'm sure lots of people will love it, though!

      Delete
  17. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed Girls made of Snow and glass! It was a bit of a slow book, at first, but I loved the characters in this so, so much :) <3
    Lovely reviews! :) x

    ReplyDelete
  18. Sorry the first one fell so flat. I've always LOVED that cover, but the story itself has never much interested me. But that second one sounds interesting for how character-driven it is and how you said the "villainous stepmother" isn't really a villain after all!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Definitely enjoyed Girls Made of Snow and Glass. The Shadow Queen is on my shelf but I have no clue when I will read it. I hate that it fell flat for you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, it was a disappointment for me, but hopefully you'll enjoy it more!

      Delete
  20. What a fun theme! I love retellings and I do like more serious or darker retellings especially, so Girls Made of Snow and Glass sounds really good.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! I've been reading a lot of retellings lately, and Girls was a good one!

      Delete

I'm so glad you stopped by, and I would love to hear your thoughts! Comments are always greatly appreciated!