Winter Glass (Spindle Fire #2)
By Lexa Hillyer
Publisher: Harper Teen
Genre: YA Fantasy/Retelling
A curse comes undone. A kingdom shatters. But some bonds can’t be broken.
Princess Aurora, torn from the dream world, plots to assassinate the faerie queen Malfleur, only to confront temptations she never expected. Isabelle, meanwhile, opens her heart to Prince William as they attempt to unite their kingdoms and wage war against Malfleur’s army. But when the appearance of an unbreakable glass slipper prompts Isabelle to discover more about her lineage, her true identity begins to take shape and her legacy becomes as clear as ice.
Devoted half-sisters Isabelle and Aurora will grapple with their understanding of love and loyalty as they face a threat even greater than that of the evil queen—the threat of losing each other forever.
Spindle Fire was a success for me in terms of YA Fantasy & Retellings. I savored every moment of the dark and atmospheric dream world Hillyer had so poetically crafted. I was also a fan of incorporating to sisters and more complex relationships into a reimagined story of Sleeping Beauty. Winter Glass seamlessly picks up where its predecessor concluded and expands on it adding significant depth to Isbe’s and Aurora’s journey.
Driven from the dreamworld Sommeil and from Heath, Aurora vows vengeance and seeks to destroy Malfleur once and for all. But in doing so, she will face greater temptations than she has ever known. During Aurora’s efforts to assassinate the faerie queen, Isbe sets out with Prince William in an attempt to unite the kingdom against Malfleur and her armies. However, when Isbe is given a mysteriously indestructible glass slipper, she embarks on a quest that will reveal the truth of her own past and legacy. Now as both girls seek to make sense of it all and save the kingdom, they face their greatest fear, potentially losing one another.
“Sleep is a vast and dreamless dark. But then: tiny lights, like seeds, shower across a corner of the black. Something has snagged its claws in the soft flesh of night.”
What I appreciated..
- The author’s poetry skills lend a lyrical and melodic prose to her work that adds a dreamlike quality to the story and heightens the “fairy tale” experience.
- While it is more action driven, we are given a storyline that continues to successfully develop and grow Aurora and Isbe not only as individuals but as half sisters, exploring the complexities and challenges that arises from their love, loyalties, and differences.
- A female-driven plotline that examines the strengths and weakness of the protagonists through a multifaceted lens.
- Hillyer’s world building surrenders the reader to the Kingdom of Deluce and beyond, transporting them into an atmospheric and fully engaging experience.
- Winter Glass is a melting pot of fantasy offering mystery, action, romance, magic, and the traditional good vs evil with stunning finesse and grace.
- It builds on its elegant predecessor and beautifully enhances it, offering something richer and new for fans while retaining the beloved and familiar elements of Spindle Fire.
“One night reviled, before break of morn… the shadow and the child were born.”
Challenges some may encounter..
- Does leaving Sommeil behind count? Because I did miss it.
- Trying to avoid spoilers but maybe shifting love interests will be a problem for some. I will add though that I am on the fence with this as I favored the change but maybe not how it happened (hard to discuss without divulging important details). Just be warned, if you are a “shipper” you are in for some ups and downs!
- The pacing slows down at times, but that’s okay. Go with it and savor it, my friends.
Winter Glass is remarkable journey woven between dreams and reality. It paints an imaginative and poetic picture of a timeless tale in new light, creating something unique and rewarding for fans of retellings and fairy tales. Grab a warm cup and allow yourself to be immersed.
Serves well with a nice cup of herbal mint tea.
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