All about Books
This is the page where I will be discussing what I'm reading, reviewing those books and be open to suggestions to keep adding to my To Be Read pile. Honestly, I'm never going to get through that thing anyway, so the more the merrier.
This book review is a collection of short stories from one of my favourite authors, Leigh Bardugo. These stories fit in with the other novels set in the Grishaverse, and are what those characters grew up knowing.
Title: The Language of Thorns
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Part of a trilogy: No, it’s a standalone
Original publication date: 26th September 2017
My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars (Read October-November 2017)
Once I'd stopped stroking the cover and admiring its beauty, I read 4 of the 6 stories in one sitting, more or less and I'll definitely come back to this in the future. These are stories where the things we should be most afraid of are right in front of us and not everything is as simple as it first appears.
An extra bonus was how the contents page detailed which stories came from which country, all ones we've come across in Leigh Bardugo's previous books. As always, the diversity is subtly here in good amounts.
And the artwork? Wow. I could look through it for hours and kept finding so many little details which made the stories much richer. Half the time, I was so engrossed in what I was reading, I'd suddenly realise the artwork had changed and had to go back to look at it properly.
Ayama and the Thorn Wood- 5/5
"Those meant to love us most are not always the ones who do."
I loved the everything about this and the ending I never coming. It has strong characters, good pacing and was a great choice for the opening tale.
The Too-Clever Fox- 4.5/5
Though I guessed some of the ending before I got there, I enjoyed the fact that I actually ended up doubting myself through it.
The Witch of Duva- 5/5
"Shut the window tight and make sure the latch is fastened. Dark things have a way of slipping in through narrow spaces."
I was never a huge fan of Hansel and Gretel growing up, but something in it always stuck with me, though I can't really say what it was. However, this is the version of the story I think I prefer and it's told so well. Again, I was wrong about several things, and after reading the author's note about how Leigh Bardugo drew her inspiration, it makes sense. I loved the ending, which felt so right.
Little Knife- 4/5
I've often enjoyed the whole aspect of giving out impossible tasks to win the princess because they're usually so ridiculous. As with all of these tales, nothing is ever simple and a price is always paid in some way. The beginning felt suitably disturbing and creepy, but I found the underlying theme of freedom and being who you want to be.
The Soldier Prince- 3.75/5
I admit a few things coming into review this one. I'm not 100% familiar with The Nutcracker and I was reading this in an environment where I got a bit distracted. But I enjoyed the dark, creepy atmosphere and how love (in its many forms) plays a huge part of it.
When Water Sang Fire- 5/5
"Be still and listen. Think of it as part of the bargain."
This is the longest story in the collection, but another one of my favourites. While I didn't ever watch Disney's A Little Mermaid until I was about 20 (shock, horror, gasp!), I was caught up in it and then was annoyed at myself for waiting for so long. :)
Here, we're presented with Ulla- the Swedish diminutive of Ursula. Though Hans Christian Andersen's tale isn't really followed in this story, it does present the idea of how circumstances help to change and shape us. I really felt for her throughout. And again, those we should be wary of are ones we aren't always.
Let me know your thoughts and what's your favourite story from this collection? Your favourite Leigh Bardugo book?
All the best and happy reading.
Hi, I'm an animal lover and have a degree. You can usually find me either reading or writing. Failing that, I might have actually ventured into the outside world...