At sixteen, Mina’s mother is dead, her magician father is vicious, and her silent heart has never beat with love for anyone—has never beat at all, in fact, but she’d always thought that fact normal. She never guessed that her father cut out her heart and replaced it with one of glass. When she moves to Whitespring Castle and sees its king for the first time, Mina forms a plan: win the king’s heart with her beauty, become queen, and finally know love. The only catch is that she’ll have to become a stepmother.
Fifteen-year-old Lynet looks just like her late mother, and one day she discovers why: a magician created her out of snow in the dead queen’s image, at her father’s order. But despite being the dead queen made flesh, Lynet would rather be like her fierce and regal stepmother, Mina. She gets her wish when her father makes Lynet queen of the southern territories, displacing Mina. Now Mina is starting to look at Lynet with something like hatred, and Lynet must decide what to do—and who to be—to win back the only mother she’s ever known…or else defeat her once and for all.
Entwining the stories of both Lynet and Mina in the past and present, Girls Made of Snow and Glass traces the relationship of two young women doomed to be rivals from the start. Only one can win all, while the other must lose everything—unless both can find a way to reshape themselves and their story.
While I haven’t read that many YA fairy tale retellings, Girls Made of Snow and Glass is definitely the best one I’ve read in a long time, if not ever. WOW. I’d heard good things about this book before diving into it, but I didn’t know just how much I would love it. I thought Girls Made of Snow and Glass was going to be kind of an epic fantasy novel, it read more like magical realism. It was a Snow White retelling full of magic, and twists, and it was just spectacular. I can’t stop thinking about it.
One of my favourite things about this novel was the slow pace, the delicately-built relationships, and the simmering romance. Because I’m basically a garden gnome, I find it quite difficult to understand new worlds in books when everything is thrown at me in the first thirty pages – so the slow pacing really benefited me. I was able to understand this world with minimal world-building because the writing was so atmospheric and captivating, and the characters were introduced in a way that made them instantly memorable. It was just the perfect read for me.
The characters and the relationships they had and formed was spectacularly well-written and I loved getting to know all of them. There’s a girl made of snow and a girl with a heart of glass, and I just loved it so much. The family relationships could be a little concerning at times and I hated the king, but the relationship between Lynet and Nadia was adorable. It was so pleasing to read a queer retelling, and I definitely need more books like this one in my life. It was just such a beautiful read. If you enjoy magical books and don’t mind the pacing being a little slow at times, then this book needs to be on your TBR!
Fairy Tale Retellings I Need to Read
Have you read Girls Made of Snow and Glass yet? Did you love it as much as I did? Do you have any other recommendations for fairy tale retellings? What fairy tale would you like to see retold that hasn’t been written yet? I’d love to know!
Thanks to Pan Macmillan Australia for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!