Thanks to NetGalley and Bloomsbury USA for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.
Release Date: September 20th, 2016
Synopsis: 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 ever could have imagined, and choices of the heart that could change everything…including Snow’s return to the world she once knew.
I’m a big fan of Danielle Paige’s Dorothy Must Die series, so when I heard she was coming out with a new series based on the Snow Queen I was so excited, especially after seeing the beautiful cover. Sadly, after spending the last week forcing myself through Stealing Snow, the question on my mind is what the holy heck happened?! There are just so many things that are wrong with this book, starting with it being an extremely messy mash-up of Frozen, and the Snow Queen, with some elements of Snow White thrown in. The tv series Once Upon a Time did something similar a couple of years ago, to far greater effect.
Here though, it just seems as though things are thrown together in a frenetic fashion and there’s no real cohesion. Another issue I had was with Snow herself.
Locked up for years for years over a childhood incident, which I actually thought was an over-reaction by her mother, I expected to feel more sympathy towards her. It’s obvious she’s not insane, although she does have anger management issues, and when in a rage she tends to bite people. Even going from human mental patient, to magical snow princess, there’s very little personal growth. She just a very bland character who I found impossible to connect with. There was also my first ever “love square”. Yep. You read that correctly. Snow has not one, not two, but THREE love interests! Oh dear God no! Given the way I feel about love triangles, this left me completely, er, cold.
Sorry about that pun. I couldn’t resist! To add insult to injury, there was absolutely no chemistry between the four, and as a result the romance came off as unbelievable and contrived. And lastly, my final disappointment/annoyance concerns the secondary characters and the world-building, both of which came across as boring, one-dimensional, and uninspiring.
There was one character, Gerde, who actually did have an interesting backstory, but there just wasn’t enough of it. The only reason why I’m giving this 1 1/2 stars is because there were some really neat elements like Snow’s badass powers:
And the intriguing variety of snow creatures and monsters.
Unfortunately, this wasn’t nearly enough to save the story for me.
As always, I remind you this is simply my opinion. However, Stealing Snow seems to be garnering a majority of poor reviews, so if you’re a fan of fairytale retellings, please look this up on Goodreads or another book review site before shelling out any money for it. Otherwise, in this case I’d advise you to: