For many, fairy tales form the basis of our literary knowledge. The question is, can the fairy tale speak to us or is just magical rubbish?
The new book, The Sisters of the Winter Wood, by Rena Rossner is the story of two teenage sisters, Liba and Laya. The sisters live with their parents in an isolated village in Eastern Europe around the turn of the 20th century.
Like many a teenage girl, Laya gets involved with a mysterious group of men whom her mother has warned her against. In addition to these mysterious men, the woods beyond their home adds another level of danger. As the evil around them draws closer, Liba and Laya uncover a generations old family secret that could save not just their family, but their village.
I appreciate a fairy tale that goes beyond the basics of the narrative. I also appreciate when the writer is able to incorporate real life historical events and the everyday lives of the real people who lived in the period that the story is based in. In addition, I appreciated the relationship between the sisters, which was the love story in the book. However, I did not like this book.
I struggled with it from the beginning and even when I got into it, I still had trouble with both the narrative and the characters. I was not able to get as hooked into the story as I hoped I would be.
Do I recommend it? Not really.