03 October, 2017

[Review] Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones

Series: Wintersong #1
Release Date: 7 February, 2017
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Genre: Young Adult/Epic Fantasy/Coming of Age
ISBN:  9781250079213
Edition: ebook
Review Written: 25 August, 2017 
Summary: The last night of the year. Now the days of winter begin and the Goblin King rides abroad, searching for his bride…

All her life, Liesl has heard tales of the beautiful, dangerous Goblin King. They’ve enraptured her mind, her spirit, and inspired her musical compositions. Now eighteen and helping to run her family’s inn, Liesl can’t help but feel that her musical dreams and childhood fantasies are slipping away.

But when her own sister is taken by the Goblin King, Liesl has no choice but to journey to the Underground to save her. Drawn to the strange, captivating world she finds—and the mysterious man who rules it—she soon faces an impossible decision. And with time and the old laws working against her, Liesl must discover who she truly is before her fate is sealed.

Rich with music and magic, S. Jae-Jones's Wintersong will sweep you away into a world you won’t soon forget.

For Full Description and more information, please check out the Macmillian website.
From the moment I read the description of this book in a Penguin Teen book roundup, I knew I had to read it. Wintersong is a combination of old faerie tales and inspired by Labyrinth, perhaps one of my favorite movies of all time. The idea of the goblin king, for good or for ill, excites me and I was pleased to not be disappointed by this book.

We're introduced to Liesl, the eldest daughter of a pair of musicians who fell out of favor and became innkeepers, who once played with the Goblin King though in her mind, she supposes she only dreamed it. Things quickly become less of a dream and more of a nightmare when her sister Katharina (affectionately called Käthe by her family) is taken by the Goblin King. Though she tries to get her back in the beginning, the King warns her that she might prefer the pretty lie to the ugly truth. Liesl doesn't quite believe him, but belief is mostly irrelevant since she awakes to find herself in a world where Käthe never existed. With family convinced that she's gone mad, Liesl has a hard time pulling herself away from the false world where her old friend Hans has been courting her and she's allowed to compose freely. 

Still, she knows in her heart that things aren't right and eventually she makes her way to her Grandmother, the only one who truly believes her about Käthe. With her Grandmother's help, Liesl finds her way to the Underworld where the Goblins live by sacrificing her compositions. Still, she doesn't truly understand the meaning of sacrifice, believing that she can truly win and not upset the balance of the world. Soon enough she's managed to save her sister but lost herself in the land of the goblins. 

As she lives among the goblins, she begins to lose herself with the idea that she will be the one who breaks the mold and escape. She discovers, in a slightly morbid way, that there have been many before her, leading Liesl to struggle with how she'll free herself. She also learns that her true brother died when he was very little and the "thing" in his place has begun to fade since she is no longer in the world of humans to keep him there with her love.

Eventually Liesl finds a way to escape, rather her Goblin King releases her from her wedding vows, though she has to find her own way out. Released, Liesl is determined to rescue the young man she knows exists under the Goblin King's persona, if only she can figure out how. I'm excited for the next installment in this series, hoping to see where Liesl's path takes her next.

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