Stealing Snow by Danielle Paige
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Like Danielle Paige's other best-known series Dorothy Must Die, this fractured fairytale launched with considerable hype, especially with Paige running a number of snow-themed social-media campaigns. Unfortunately, unlike DMD, Stealing Snow didn't live up to the hype for me.
That's not to say it's a bad book. It is, as Kami Garcia said in her blurb, "lush and addictive." And it presents a pretty unique retelling of The Snow Queen - unique, if very strongly influenced by Once Upon A Time, and in particular Once Upon A Time In Wonderland since this book begins with Snow incarcerated in a mental hospital. At the same time, however, there are so many references to other tales - like Snow referring to her meds with Seven Dwarf names, which could easily mislead readers who go into this thinking (as I recall doing when I first heard of this book) that it's based on Snow White instead, or the "lions and tigers and bears" jokes - that as much as this book feels distinctly Danielle Paige, it also feels a little more like a hodgepodge, and not exactly in a good way. The book's primary flaw, however, is its pacing, which has a way of merrily skipping and leaping and leaving plot threads in the dust even as you want to read the book slowly to savor it.
That said, though, the book does unmistakably have Paige's voice and style, boasting, as you would expect, a looked-down-on heroine discovering her magical powers in a fantasy land, surrounded by a cast of eclectic - and often good-looking - oddballs and misfits of various shades.
So while I can't recommend this book as highly as I would the Dorothy Must Die series, I can still await the sequel with interest - and hope that the prequel novellas come out in a paperback collection soon like they did for DMD, because something tells me those novellas are essential to properly understanding this novel.
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