Genres: Fantasy, Historical, Romantic, Young Adult
Published by Month9Books on September 9, 2014
Reviewed by: Julia
Sexual Content: Kissing.
Thyra Winther's seventeen, the Snow Queen, and immortal, but if she can't reassemble a shattered enchanted mirror by her eighteenth birthday she's doomed to spend eternity as a wraith. Armed with magic granted by a ruthless wizard, Thyra schemes to survive with her mind and body intact. Unencumbered by kindness, she kidnaps local boy Kai Thorsen, whose mathematical skills rival her own. Two logical minds, Thyra calculates, are better than one. With time rapidly melting away she needs all the help she can steal. A cruel lie ensnares Kai in her plan, but three missing mirror shards and Kai's childhood friend, Gerda, present more formidable obstacles. Thyra's willing to do anything – venture into uncharted lands, outwit sorcerers, or battle enchanted beasts -- to reconstruct the mirror, yet her most dangerous adversary lies within her breast. Touched by the warmth of a wolf pup's devotion and the fire of a young man's desire, the thawing of Thyra's frozen heart could be her ultimate undoing.
CROWN OF ICE is a YA Fantasy that reinvents Hans Christian Andersen's "The Snow Queen" from the perspective of a young woman who discovers that the greatest threat to her survival may be her own humanity.
CROWN OF ICE offers so much more than just the tale of The Snow Queen with a change of perspective. A solid YA adventure with teenagers who learn so much about themselves, and each other. Even the expected happily ever after offers believable surprises that underscore the maturity and independence they each have gained.
The heroine of of CROWN OF ICE is an sympathetic villain, and the author does a fantastic job balancing both sides of that dichotomy. Thyra Winther is legitimately dark, she knowingly risks those around her when logic dictates. Still, woven amongst these villainous acts are situational ethics that make her decisions relatable. This context supports a personality that doesn't have to fundamentally change to leap from those dark beginnings to a heroine readers can root for. Everyone in this book, from the dastardly magician to the plucky "heroine" Gerda, have nuances that elevate their actions from fairy tale caricature to genuine characters.
A very well structured fairy tale retelling, while I felt I could "see behind the curtain" in some parts of the story, those moments in no way detracted from my overall enjoyment of the book. Thyra is smart, independent, and uncompromising, and I wish CROWN OF ICE was just the start of her adventures.More Reviews:
- For a haunting "fairy tale feel" without the retelling, and another heroine that holds her own, try Sarah Beth Durst's Conjured.
- For an entire, interstellar world of fairy tales where the heroines have enough on their plates that heroes often take the backseat, try Marissa Meyer's Lunar Chronicles.