My Rating: 4/5 Stars
Author: Danielle Paige
I loved Danielle Paige's Dorothy Must Die so when she offered to send me an ARC of her newest book Stealing Snow I was so excited. I love retellings and the snow queen is such a great fairy tale. This book is a whirlwind (snowstorm?) and I'm going to try and give it a good review.
Seventeen-year-old Snow has spent the majority of her life within the walls of the Whittaker Institute, a high security mental hospital in upstate New York. Deep down, she knows she's not crazy and doesn't belong there. When she meets a mysterious, handsome new orderly and dreams about a strange twisted tree she realizes she must escape and figure out who she really is.
Using her trusting friend Bale as a distraction, Snow breaks free and races into the nearby woods. Suddenly, everything isn't what it seems, the line between reality and fantasy begins to blur, and she finds herself in icy Algid--her true home--with witches, thieves, and a strangely alluring boy named Kai, none of whom she's sure she can trust. As secret after secret is revealed, Snow discovers that she is on the run from a royal lineage she's destined to inherit, a father more powerful and ruthless than she could have imagined, and choices of the heart that could change the fate of everything...including Snow's return to the world she once knew.
This breathtaking first volume begins the story of how Snow becomes a villain, a queen, and ultimately a hero.
We start the story in the mental hospital. Whenever there's a scene in a book with that setting (A Madness So Discreet) I'm instantly intrigued. Our character is considered crazy. In this book Snow might actually believe that. Is she crazy or something else entirely? I loved Snow. She was such an amazing lead. She's independent, curious, and fiercely loyal to her friends. Her character development throughout the story was so fun to watch. Her power? If you're thinking Elsa stop now. Danielle got so creative with Snow's powers and I loved every minute of it.
In this story we do get three guys. I didn't think of it as a love 'shape' though. They weren't love sick puppies we just had three guys. Actually there's a lot of side characters in this book. Instead of Snow being some crazy main character who doesn't need anyone we have lots of characters that give the story depth. Kai and his sister Gerde, Jagger and the band of robbers, Vern, Bale, Magpie, the River Witch, and so many others. One of my pet peeves with books is having shallow side characters but that's not the case in this story. Snow had such a big heart and that's something I loved about her.
Danielle Paige is an amazing writer. She takes fairy tales and creates a whole new world. We see The Snow Queen throughout the story but there's new twists and that's the best type of retelling. When you have a classic fairy tale in your head and this new story is full of brand new magic. I loved this story. The characters, the magic, the writing. Everything about it was perfect and I have no idea how I'm going to wait for the second book.
If you love disguises, quirky guys, and fights with snow creatures I recommend this book. If you're not convinced you should read this story then here are some of my favorite quotes from it:
"It sounded like Vern was calling me brave.... Or crazy. Maybe they were the same thing. "
"Mirrors reflect what we want to see, or sometimes they reveal what you really are or what you really want. You have to be careful with a mirror."
"We breathe out the lies; we stutter the truth."
"Sometimes words could be a sacrifice, too, I guessed."