Thanks to NetGalley and Tordotcom for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.
Release Date: October 5th, 2021
Synopsis: USA Today bestselling author Alix E. Harrow’s A Spindle Splintered brings her patented charm to a new version of a classic story.
“A vivid, subversive and feminist reimagining of Sleeping Beauty, where implacable destiny is no match for courage, sisterhood, stubbornness and a good working knowledge of fairy tales.” ―Katherine Arden
It’s Zinnia Gray’s twenty-first birthday, which is extra-special because it’s the last birthday she’ll ever have. When she was young, an industrial accident left Zinnia with a rare condition. Not much is known about her illness, just that no one has lived past twenty-one.
Her best friend Charm is intent on making Zinnia’s last birthday special with a full sleeping beauty experience, complete with a tower and a spinning wheel. But when Zinnia pricks her finger, something strange and unexpected happens, and she finds herself falling through worlds, with another sleeping beauty, just as desperate to escape her fate. (Goodreads)
A Spindle Splintered may only be 128 pages, but it packs a heck of a lot of content in that brief span. When I read this was Sleeping Beauty meets Into the Spider-Verse I was initially skeptical, but I knew if anyone could pull this off it would be Alix Harrow. I don’t want to gush, but this just ticked all my boxes.
✨Strong, smart, and relatable female characters
✨A unique and imaginative plot
✨A fairytale retelling that improves upon the original
✨Loads of diversity
✨A picture perfect ending.
Best of all it gives Sleeping Beauty a long overdue feminist slant that highlights the struggles that women everywhere have to contend with. It’s all about courage, sisterhood, and sassiness, so please take my advice and preorder this immediately or put in a request to purchase at your library. I do want to warn you it mentions rape. It’s something that happened in the past to one of the characters, and it’s not graphic, but I wanted to let you know.
In a year where I’ve been blessed with some truly stupendous reads, this novella will definitely be one of my top ten favorites. I highly recommend A Spindle Splintered to readers who love fairytale retellings and even those who don’t. I guarantee you’ll fall in love with both the plot and its characters, and you’ll easily finish it in one sitting and then be disappointed that it’s over.