Thank you to Tor Books for an arc of this book!
Retellings and I can have a complicated relationship, but there was no complicated relationship here. I enjoyed this book from cover to cover, and it definitely has feelings of something like Katherine Arden, who is one of my favorite authors.
This “retelling” and I feel like retelling is the wrong word because this is more like, take an idea and make it your own, because while bits and pieces are clearly representative of folktales and fairytales, most of this is very original.
I was impressed with the writing — Woods is a clearly talented author, and deserves lots of praise, because the world that was built via the writing was excellent. And I love the time period they picked to place it in, I felt it made so much sense, especially for what was happening at the time. I will say at moments it read very modern, which in this case, wasn’t a bad thing.
Sometimes the old world can feel so far away, but I feel like Woods managed to bring something of the two worlds together in this book. I like how she played into the fears at the time, as well as the stories that existed. It worked well in the larger picture.
You also had complicated characters who were not all bad nor were they all good, and I liked that. I especially thought Greta was a great main character and she very much carried the book. The few other characters were great as well.
I am very curious about a character who doesn’t make much of an appearance in this one, because I feel like she might have a story to tell as well.
Overall, I think this is a great book, and brings folklore and magic together in a way that makes you think.