Book Review: Girls Made of Snow and Glass by Melissa Bashardoust

*Received a copy of Girls Made of Snow and Glass by Melissa Bashardoust from the publisher in exchange for a honest review.

4/5 stars

Snow White has gotten revamped in this retelling/configuration of the original story from the submissive girl looking for a man to save her from her life to a girl looking to save the world. Everything seems to in order in the cold royal village of Whitespring until a new surgeon who happens to be a girl named Nadia comes in and takes all Lynet's interest. Also, Lynet is soon to be queen of Whitespring, which does not make Mina happy. Mina breaks into a jealous rage and her protective side for Lynet takes over, trying to protect her position and Lynet's hopes of never becoming queen. Mina sends Lynet away due to her violent outburst of magic, and tries to find Lynet who is set on a journey to save herself and Mina. Throughout Lynet's exploration of her kingdom, she gains knowledge about her own magic and her kingdom while also learning who she is through an unknown relative. In this incredible story of a journey through youth and bravery, Lynet learns the differences between the expectations put on her and who she really is with her friends and family alongside her.

Discussion:

As to get into tune with the princess and fairy tale vibes of this story, I will write down my childhood memories of Disney for you. I used to love watching Disney movies, which have stolen many generations of viewers's hearts, as a child. I saw "The Little Mermaid" and "Snow White" too many times to count, and found them enjoyable. As I have grown, I have seen the issues in both of these movies and many other stories from Disney. Also, the classic movies from Disney have also grown up as "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" is almost one-hundred years old in 2037, which will be in twenty years but only feel like ten. Time just goes by so fast, doesn't it? As Girls Made of Snow and Glass is a retelling of "Snow White," I thought it was only right to mention the movie that started it all; however, the similarities are few between these two sources, which I will discuss later in this post.

First, before I go into the great qualities that made this book into what it is, I want to quickly rip off the band-aid and go into the thing I disliked. The story was so slow in the beginning. As I do every night, I will read until I cannot keep my eyes open the slightest, and even though Bashardoust's storytelling is amazing at each flip of a page, I closed my eyes more and more as I had begun to read the book. A lot of great books I have read before have slow beginnings; however, the world-building could've been told with a faster pace. Since this is the only bad thing I have to say about this novel, let's jump right into the good stuff(or a room full of fluffy cats and cake🎂🍰!).

Next, in a lot of stories told through the pages of a book, spoken words on a radio, or the visuals on a television screen, families are always in the spotlight. Whether it is good or bad, family is still important, which is why I feel obligated to write about it. I have always been told by my family that I can pick my nose, I can pick my friends, but I cannot pick my friend's nose; or as explained simply, pick your friends wisely since they are YOUR chosen family. Or, that may just be how I interpreted my parents' words. I have been immensely lucky to find myself in a good home and some great friends at school; however, that does not seem to be the case with Lynet. As Lynet is becoming sixteen and is almost ready to takeover her father's throne, she always thought she would be able to confide to her stepmother Mina in dire times. That part of life does not always stay true though since Mina and Lynet both feel betrayed by each other. Mina wants to rule, and Lynet just wants to live her life with no expectations weighing her down; however, that can never truly happen as both ladies's insecurities and territories are threatened. Even though they feel threatened by each other, they find out how to work together and kill who they need to kill in order to get what they both want: each other. Their ties to each other are stronger than anyone thought they were as they tackle their problems individually and together. Also, Mina and Lynet are not the only characters who are included in their family. Along with seeing Lynet's father be a part in Lynet's childhood, Mina's dad is shown throughout the book in Mina's flashbacks and Lynet's adventures. I enjoyed seeing a family that actually fixed its problems unlike every other reality show ever shown on the television screen these days. Somehow, I am rooting for fictional families all the time, but I hardly ever root for real-life families. Weird, right?! Eh, I want to talk about more things in this book!

Along with the importance of family, this book looks like a sore thumb from the rest of books I have since I have only read one other "Snow White" retelling, which is Winter by Marissa Meyer. "Snow White" seems to be the least used idea along with a good family relationship or friendship that works out in the end. I really need to start finding more fairy tale retellings as I find them to be good, safe, and nostalgic stories that can have a different villain or a strong character that I can root for. Even though this can be every book in general, a retelling makes an author play around with the original characters and story line to make his or her story unique. Also, it can be nice to read a favorite or hated tale of mine and love it more since it can be shown in a light that I favor.

In literature, diversity has gotten some recognition and has become widespread over the past couple of years. Also, one can go on Twitter and rant about it for hours on end due to the rabbit hole Twitter presents to its users, such as when one goes and stays on Twitter all night.(Do not lie that you have not done that too!) Going back to what to the topic that I was discussing, this book can be high on someone's radar when looking for some diversity as there is a lesbian relationship. Also, in some books, a lot of relationships seem to be forced or spontaneous; however, Bashardoust seems to make this storybook romance work. She finds the perfect blend of romance, fantasy, and realistic views to make the relationship work. I am very glad that the romance between Nadia and Lynet worked out as they both seemed perfect for each other, whether it was through a friendship or a romantic relationship. Their romance was not rushed nor was it insta-lovey-dovey as they went through a lot with each other to get to know each other, which I think made them stronger as individuals and together as a couple. Since this story is based on a fairy tale with a storybook romance, I am glad that this was a well-executed part of the large plan told in this book.

The characters seem to have a taken a step back in this review since Bashardoust fills her book with the intricate world she built, the important themes she discusses, and the diversity that is flawlessly included. For the characters, they are phenomenal and extremely well-thought out. They each have their own goals and their own fates decided by themselves as this story is driven via the characters' actions and decisions. Even though the characters have a lot in common with each other, they have a lot of differences as well. Since there are two main characters that show us the story through their eyes, I will discuss my feelings for Lynet and Mina.

1. Lynet
The first character I will write about is Lynet, which I found to be very enjoyable to read about. As a girl who is an outline of everyone's thoughts of her, she feels oppressed and does not feel as if she owns herself. Throughout the book, she goes through a humongous character arc as she learns to believe in herself and to do what she wants to do with her life. Also, as she learns more about her magic and becomes one with it, she becomes more confident as she seems to take more risks rather than just climbing and sneaking out at late hours to talk to Mina. I found myself relating to Lynet so often as I hate being told what to do and I love to explore. Even if I may only spend my days cleaning my room and searching for that one pen I lost two years ago, I like to search for things. A difference between the original story of "Snow White" and Girls Made of Snow and Glass is that Snow White is a girl who leaves her mother who wants to kill her while Lynet leaves the only place she has ever known to help her stepmother with her magic. Even though she may have the kindness, purity, and unselfishness that Snow White has, she is strong, adventurous, intelligent, and can definitely stand up for herself in a fight. Even though finding a fantasy standalone is like finding treasure in an ancient treasure chest, I do wish I had more time with Lynet and all the other wonderful characters in this book. There are some parts that can help form a sequel or a companion book, but I guess that I will have to wait and see.

2. Mina
Mina was also very enjoyable to read as I was not just reading about the current events, but also her past and how she grew up. When she was at a young age, Mina tackled her magic, which is something that Lynet never got to do due to her father's watchful gaze on her at all times. Even though Mina may have all the magic I wish I had, she lives a lonely life of no friends, no close connection with her dad, and rumors always traveling behind her whenever she went to her village's market when she was young. Even though Mina learned self-confidence, pride, and manipulation at a young age, she never learned what love was as she was always told she could not love as she had a glass heart. This belief she holds throughout her entire life keeps her from finding someone whom she really loved until the end of the book. She tries to break her "curse" with her future husband but she finds no end to it. I enjoyed reading how she found out that she could love others even if it was very sad to read about as love is a key part of our every day human lives. Unless if you are a robot, you can probably relate to what I writing. Writing of robots, Mina can create glass people due to her glass heart. This is really cool as she can create anything she wants as long as she has glass or sand. Also, I really enjoy how she triess to make up how she acted with Lynet at their first meeting when she "exploded" with power. I am so glad that Mina redeems herself in the end to become a great mother and friend to Lynet.

In conclusion, Melissa Bashardoust's Girls Made of Glass and Snow is definitely a book one should pick up or keep on his or her radar. I learned so much in between the pages of this book that I can use in my life, even if I have no magical abilities or danger lurking at every corner. Even though I could write many more sentences to describe my love for this book, I find myself repeating the things I wrote above and my eyes closing more and more every second. So, until next time, have fun reading the books you are reading now, which if you want to tell me, you can in the comment section below.

Thank you for reading, and I hope you enjoy!

Keep warm,
newbookcats

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Comments

  1. i liked watching Snow White too. i am interested in this book now. i can't wait to read it!

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    1. Thank you for taking the time to write a comment! Snow White used to be much better to me than it is today, but what are we going to do? I am glad that you take my reviews as recommendations! Hope you enjoy my later posts!

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