“Worlds collide and hearts melt in this first novel in an icily glamorous and epic new series.”
I don’t even know where to start with this one. Honestly, it was a bit of a mess. The beautiful cover is what drew me to this book, minimalistic and shiny, but as soon as I read the blurb on the back I was hesitant. I knew this book had the potential to be either amazing or absolutely awful.
What I was expecting (or rather hoping for) was a modern adaption of Hans Christian Anderson’s The Snow Queen mixed with the haunting tone and unreliable narrator of the Mara Dyer series. What I got was the most butchered fairytale retelling I’ve ever read, with hints of Snow White, The Snow Queen and even Alice Through The Looking Glass. Honestly, I don’t even think Paige knew what she was going for here.
I found the world unbelievable, the plot both ridiculous and fast paced, the female protagonist extremely irritating, and the plot twist at the end ludicrous. The writing was fine, though there wasn’t a uniqueness of writing style, which did make it a tad boring. The dialogue was stilted and awkward, it didn’t feel natural or authentic to speech, and the voices of the characters were all very similar.
The novel was also riffled with problematic aspects, such as the trivialisation of mental health and misrepresentation of a psychiatric hospital; a potentially abusive relationship, with the female protagonist internalising the blame for mistreatment; and male characters who feel entitled to a girls affection and persist even after being rejected, and then of course the girl falling for it, mistaking manipulation for romance.
But despite the fact that I spent most of the time with my eyes rolled back into my head, laughing with disbelief; by the end of the novel I was looking for a sequel, burning with the curiosity of where this train wreck was headed. I must be a masochist.
(Continue reading for a more in depth review, but beware spoilers.) Trigger Warning: Mental Illness.