Seventeen-year-old Snow has spent the majority of her life within the walls of the Whittaker Institute, a high security mental hospital in upstate New York. Deep down, she knows she's not crazy and doesn't belong there. When she meets a mysterious, handsome new orderly and dreams about a strange twisted tree she realizes she must escape and figure out who she really is.
Using her trusting friend Bale as a distraction, Snow breaks free and races into the nearby woods. Suddenly, everything isn't what it seems, the line between reality and fantasy begins to blur, and she finds herself in icy Algid--her true home--with witches, thieves, and a strangely alluring boy named Kai, none of whom she's sure she can trust. As secret after secret is revealed, Snow discovers that she is on the run from a royal lineage she's destined to inherit, a father more powerful and ruthless than she could have imagined, and choices of the heart that could change the fate of everything...including Snow's return to the world she once knew.
This breathtaking first volume begins the story of how Snow becomes a villain, a queen, and ultimately a hero.
I received this ARC while attending BEA earlier this year, I was in no way compensated for this review.
Danielle Paige, author of the incredible Dorothy Must Die series brings us a new fairy tale completely retold! And I’m of course talking about The Snow Queen! Outside of Frozen, not many people probably remember this tale from Hans Christian Andersen. The Snow Queen was actually the villain of the story, if you didn’t already know. As it is, I can only remember reading a short version, so I’m going to have to read the full version soon! Thankfully, I have that in my ever growing TBR pile! But anyway, Stealing Snow is what you might call a modern day origin story to The Snow Queen! Yeah, it’s that twisted! For we kind of already know this is our origin story for the Snow Queen herself, but I wasn’t at all expecting the modern twist! But I do want to say, that the “modernity” isn’t really all the present for the story. But I’ll get to that in a moment!
Snow has spent most of her life growing up in Whittaker Psychiatry. When she was a little girl, she tried to go through a mirror, like in Alice in Wonderland and ended up getting herself and her friend all cut up. Now she’s in a hospital where everything is decided for her. But somehow, she’s managed to find love with Bale, another disturbed teen. Though they were both young when they were admitted and we friends ever since. When they share their first kiss, Bale kind of snaps and hurts Snow, but she doesn’t take offense really. If any, she thinks she did something wrong. Then one night she sees Bale vanish as a pair of arms drags him through the mirror and from that moment on, the adventure truly begins!
It’s not long before Snow ventures through a magical tree to come into the magical world known as Algid. She’s determined to find Bale and go back home. For this world is ruled by a powerful and evil king who has ice wielding abilities. The fact that Snow has these powers too, is not all that surprising, since it’s said that she’s his daughter.
Soon begins an exciting tale with an assortment of characters that were all very enticing! Snow goes from meeting a River Witch who can help her harness her powers to a group of Robbers who want Snow’s help in stealing pieces of a broken mirror that just might be the key to defeating the king. The pacing was pretty fast which is normally a good thing, but the times when I had to put the book down for other things involving life and when I would return once again to the pages, I found it hard to get caught back up because there was always so much happening! So many of the characters had their own agenda, which is to be expected. But other than a few bouts of disorientation, I found the story to be incredible!
Though I had only read a condensed version of the original tale, I felt like I could see the threads of it shining through some of the finer moments of the story! I’m really anxious to get around to reading the full version now! But from the little bits that I can recall from the shortened version, I feel like I was seeing it through this retelling! Not to mention the fact that Snow was venturing into a different world to rescue her friend! I love when retellings hold so much of the original within the story! And the way those details are woven into the new story is always so amazing! It’s like finding Easter eggs!
Romance plays a small role into the story as well! Note the small! While Snow loves her friend Bale, there seems like there could be two more contenders for her heart! This definitely makes for a love complication, but it’s hard to see where things might go since she still loves Bale! The coming installments of this series will definitely be making things interesting in that area!
The ending was pretty epic! Just when Danielle finishes throwing us one curve ball, she winds up for a few more! Danielle really keeps readers on their toes with this one! I can’t wait to see where this series will go until its epic end! Because you know it’s going to be an epic ending!
Stealing Snow will positively steal your breath away with all its many twists and turns! It’s one fantastical kind of read that must be had by all fans of fairy tales and retellings!
Overall Rating 4.5/5 stars