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Red House Books is going through a bit of a update!

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Monday, July 20, 2009

Book Review: Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow by Jessica Day George

In a land far to the north, there is little to do when the snows fall thick and deep. Perhaps that is why the tales the Lass's older brother tells have always held her spellbound. And when a great white bear makes a proposition - riches for the Lass's family in exchange for a year of her company - she hesitates only for a moment. Yet even as her affection for the bear grows, the horror behind his enchantment becomes known - and the Lass finds herself grappling with her destiny in a place east of the sun and west of the moon, where trolls are known to live and from which humans never return. Based on an old Nordic tale, this wonderfully reimagined story is perfect for fans of Shannon Hale and Robin McKinley. (back cover)

I have to say, it took me a few chapters to really get into this story. It very much has the feel of an old fairy tale. Our protagonist, un-named by her mother at birth, is called Lass by her affectionate older brother Hans Peter. They live together, with the rest of their large family, in the frozen north. On the day the great bear, an isbjorn, comes to take Lass away, the family's fate is sealed. Lass must spend a year and a day in the Ice Palace - full of fantastical creatures and a mystery night time visitor.
There are many layers to this tale and Lass is a wonderfully strong young girl. I really liked this book. A few points did bother me though. The ending was rushed - I loved the time Lass spent in the Palace of Ice and would have liked the telling of her time in the palace east of the sun and west of the moon to have been more detailed. Also, I felt that the troll queen and princess weren't quite as horrible as we were led to believe.
All in all, a great YA fantasy - 3.5 out of 5 stars


  1. What a gorgeous cover! And thanks for the great review! I'm going to put this on my list for myself and my daughter. I'm thinking a mother/daughter bookclub might be fun!!

  2. i read a book very similar to this called East. I can't remember the author but I did enjoy it.

  3. Off topic...but regarding the Dexter books..there are three other ones,
    Darkly Dreaming Dexter
    Dearly Devoted Dexter
    Dexter in the Dark and now the new one
    Dexter by Design.

    I'd probably read them in order, but I'm weird that way.

  4. Ok love the cover and the book sounds pretty good too. Definitely different from anything I've ever read before and I look forward to reading it. Thanks for the honest review.



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