Book Review: Among the Beasts & Briars by Ashley Poston #BookReview #Fantasy #Fiction

Among the Beasts & Briars by Ashley Poston

Blurb:

Cerys is safe in the kingdom of Aloriya.

Here there are no droughts, disease, or famine, and peace is everlasting. It has been this way for hundreds of years, since the first king made a bargain with the Lady who ruled the forest that borders the kingdom. But as Aloriya prospered, the woods grew dark, cursed, and forbidden. Cerys knows this all too well: when she was young, she barely escaped as the woods killed her friends and her mother. Now Cerys carries a small bit of the curse—the magic—in her blood, a reminder of the day she lost everything. The most danger she faces now, as a gardener’s daughter, is the annoying fox who stalks the royal gardens and won’t leave her alone.

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2021 Retellings Reading Challenge: #2021ReadingChallenge #FairyTales #RetellingsReadingChallenge #Retellings #Books

In 2019 I participated in the Retellings Reading Challenge over @cornerfolds.com. Unfortunately, Tracy isn’t hosting the retelling challenge this year, so I decided to create my own personal retelling challenge for 2021!

I love retellings, and there are so many on my shelf waiting to be read. For the original challenge, here was my list:

  • Shadowsong by S Jae-Jones
  • A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
  • Ragnarök (Erik Storm) by Kai Mjaanes
  • Cinder by Marissa Meyer
  • The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle
  • The Winter of the Witch by Katherine Arden
  • Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman
  • Beauty by Robin McKinley
  • Geekerella by Ashley Poston
  • Finding Baba Yaga: A Short Novel in Verse by Jane Yolen
  • Heartless by Marissa Meyer
  • The Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman
  • Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson
  • The Wrath and the Dawn (The Wrath and the Dawn #1) by Renée Ahdieh
  • Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow by Jessica Day George
  • Daughter of the Forest (Sevenwaters #1) by Juliet Marillier
  • Mother Knows Best by Serena Valentini
  • Echo North by Joanna Ruth Meyer
  • Stepsister by Jennifer Donnelly
  • Depravity by M.J. Haag
  • Snow, Glass, Apples by Neil Gaiman

The seven that are crossed out were read for the 2019 challenge. I’m challenging myself to read these 10 titles below, on top of the other retellings I’ve already read this year, which will post next week. Not all are from my old list, and there may be more added on throughout the year.


Shadowsong by S Jae-Jones

I absolutely loved Wintersong, the first installment in this series. It reminded me so much of Labyrinth, one of my all-time favorites from childhood. When this second installment came out, I was in such a hurry to grab a copy, and here we are in 2021 still not having this one under my belt! I’m excited to see how the author continues this story.

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Book Review: A Wolf for a Spell by Karah Sutton #BookReview #Netgalley #MiddleGrade #ChildrensBooks #AWolfforaSpell

A Wolf for a Spell

by Karah Sutton

Pauliina Hannuniemi (Illustrations)

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From Goodreads:

The Girl Who Drank the Moon meets Pax in this fantastical tale of a wolf who forms an unlikely alliance with Baba Yaga to save the forest from a wicked tsar.

Since she was a pup, Zima has been taught to fear humans—especially witches—but when her family is threatened, she has no choice but to seek help from the witch Baba Yaga.

Baba Yaga never does magic for free, but it just so happens that she needs a wolf’s keen nose for a secret plan she’s brewing… Before Zima knows what’s happening, the witch has cast a switching spell and run off into the woods, while Zima is left behind in Baba Yaga’s hut—and Baba Yaga’s body!

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Book Review: The Journey of Joseph Winter by John Anthony #BookReview #20booksforChristmas #Christmas #ReadingChallenge

The Journey of Joseph Winter

by John Anthony

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My thoughts:

This story begins with Geraldine, an older woman who brings all of her family–children and grandchildren–together to share a story none of them have ever heard: the story of her brother, Joseph Winter.

“The mind of a child is one of the places all adults wish to exist again. Only there, surrounded by youthful innocence, do dreams never disappear.”

Joseph has been living his life with regret, missing out on all the possible joy in his life. As a child he said something to his mother that he’s never been able take back, and it’s haunted him for what feels like forever. When a mysterious package arrives at his door, he has no idea what’s in store for him. Then a stranger appears and takes Joseph on a journey by train toward the North Pole where he revisits old memories, meets some very special people (including a sweet, young boy named Max), and in turn learns what it means to forgive.

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