Wow! This book exceeded my expectations! (And, after following Turgeon’s ‘Mermaid’ blog, I had reasonably high expectations.)
Ignore the teenage-oriented cover art. This story would fit in perfectly with Terri Windling’s ‘Fairy Tale Series,’ legendary for its dark and complex renditions of classic tales by the likes of Kara Dalkey, Charles de Lint, Patricia Wrede, and Tanith Lee, among others.
The tale meshes ‘Rapunzel’ with ‘Snow White,’ adding in other classic elements such as the enchanted stag, &c. But the familiar elements here twist into a more complex tale of bitterness, manipulation, jealousy and revenge – while maintaining the readers’ sympathy and understanding, even though the characters may be driven to horrible things.
Turgeon perfectly grasps the kernels of the stories she’s working with, and remains true to them, even while building up a lovely filigree of literary embellishments around that original gem. Her other novels are going straight to my must-read list.
I received a copy of this book from NetGalley. Thanks to both NetGalley and Touchstone.