TJ Burns — July 2017
I was intrigued and thoroughly captivated at the start.
Liesl is an interesting character. Such untapped and unappreciated talent, such passion with no outlet to express it… she just had to explode (sooner rather than later).
Beautiful Käthe annoyed me to no end. But I think that’s the point. She’s self-involved and weak, but her character is just a pawn in a larger game. I liked Constanze — I thought she was a fascinating, plucky old woman :D. I didn’t know what to make of the Goblin King, although I found his personality intriguing.
I really like the concept. I’d heard of der Erlkönig before — I’ve read the poem by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. After finishing this book I looked a bit into the history of der Erlkönig, and I like what Jae-Jones has done with this story.
I got a bit frustrated in the middle, with Liesl’s choices. [ After all Liesl has done to save her sister and break free, after all she knows about the lies and the mischief of the Erlkönig, she was just going to give up and become his bride? Okay, I get that she lusts after him, and that she wants to be “desired” by someone…, and of course she wants to save the world, but how can she trust him?
How does she know it’s not a scam — the whole story about how he needs a bride to prevent the world from falling into an eternal winter? And even if that were the case, why does she need to decide that now, when she’s about to win her freedom and win the King of Mischief’s little game?
It would have made more sense for her to get out of the Underworld, win the game, win her freedom, and then consider his offer to marry her — with a clear head, a night’s sleep, and no games involved. It seems he’s laid his cards on the table. Why not take a day/week/month to see if what he said is really true? And to consider her own feelings in the matter? And make sure her sister is really in safety?
It just seems to me that a character, who has been rather clear-headed, smart, and brave up until now is just acting like a foolish wimp. (hide spoiler)]
Two-thirds through, the story was moving much too slow for my tastes and I was afraid I might not finish. Luckily, it picked up quite significantly at the end. It ended as I predicted, but there were still some surprises.
The writing is beautiful — descriptive and metaphoric — I especially appreciated all the music metaphors.
I received a copy of this book from St. Martin’s Press via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Published February 7th 2017 by Thomas Dunne Books
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