Friday, September 19, 2014

Early Review: Stitching Snow by R.C. Lewis

Release Date: October 14, 2014
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Source: NetGalley
Author Links: Goodreads | Website | Twitter

Princess Snow is missing.
Her home planet is filled with violence and corruption at the hands of King Matthias and his wife as they attempt to punish her captors. The king will stop at nothing to get his beloved daughter back—but that’s assuming she wants to return at all.
Essie has grown used to being cold. Temperatures on the planet Thanda are always sub-zero, and she fills her days with coding and repairs for the seven loyal drones that run the local mines.
When a mysterious young man named Dane crash-lands near her home, Essie agrees to help the pilot repair his ship. But soon she realizes that Dane’s arrival was far from accidental, and she’s pulled into the heart of a war she’s risked everything to avoid. With the galaxy’s future—and her own—in jeopardy, Essie must choose who to trust in a fiery fight for survival.

Space, the final frontier...

The big question on everyone's mind seems to be whether or not Stitching Snow is a rip-off of The Lunar Chronicles.
Well, retellings are, by the very nature of the genre, all rip-offs.
But that's not really what people are talking about, is it?
My personal opinion?
I'm leaning towards, no. No, I do not think this is a rip-off.
I mean, is no one ever going to be allowed to write another retelling in space, just because Marissa Meyer did such a good job of it? I certainly hope not.
That would be like saying every story about a young wizard is a rip-off of Harry Potter, and every story about a snugly vampire is a rip-off of Twilight.
Yes, there are some similarities. Yes, they will bother some people.
But for folks like me, who gobble up multiple retellings every year? Well, I'm used to the fact that some of these stories occasionally have components that feel familiar. Granted, the reviewers who are comparing this book to Meyer's books, have valid reasons to feel the way they do. All I'm saying, was that it didn't bother me very much. However, in the interest of total disclosure, I probably would have rated this a full 4 stars if there hadn't been things that reminded me of The Lunar Chronicles' world.

So, with my opinion on that out of the way, here's the review:

This one took a few chapters to get interesting. The setting on Thanda wasn't something that drew me in, or made me want to read more. Cold = Boring.
Possibly this is because I hate cold climates. I know that tons of people love the Winter Wonderland stuff, but not me.
Anybody remember Chilly Willy the Penguin?
Yeah, that's me anytime the temperature drops below 75 degrees.
True story:
When my husband and I first met, he had just moved to Florida (having spent the better part of a decade in Colorado), and I nearly killed him on several occasions.
Every time the temperature dipped down past 70, I cranked the heat up to 90.
I'd find him passed out on the couch, sweating and gasping for breath.
Meanwhile, I'm wearing a sweatshirt and wool socks.
All I can say is that he really must have loved me.
So, for whatever reason, I found the icy setting bleak and uninteresting. It wasn't until they left the planet entirely, that I perked up and started paying attention.
Once they were hurtling toward another planet, the plot started clicking a bit better for me, and by the midway point, I was fully engaged in this story.

Essie (Snow) is the missing princess. Duh.
Dane is Prince (not always so) Charming. Their romance wasn't insta-love, so bonus points for the two of them getting to know each other first. On the downside, it's not really a sizzler.
And instead of the Seven Dwarfs, you have seven mining bots that each have their own personality traits. Cusser (Grumpy) and Dimwit (Dopey) are the two main bots that follow Essie throughout the entire story. The rest kind of take a backseat, so, quite frankly, I can't remember their names, or who they line up with in the Disney movie.
The evil Queen is very...well, evil. But, for me, she wasn't the creepiest villain in the show. No, that spot is reserved for Essie's father. You don't find out why he's so awful until over halfway through the book, so I really can't say anything without it being a spoiler.
He was so glad to see her alive, and had no idea his new wife was actively trying to kill his child. Yay!
And yet...*shudder*

I think Lewis did a really good job of putting a lot of the recognizable parts of the Snow White story into this book.
Poison apple. Check.
Huntsman. Check.
Kiss to Wake Up (with a twist). Check.
And believe it or not, even the Burning Iron Shoes make an appearance!
The only thing missing was the glass casket. Yeah, it's not there.

If you're looking for a YA romance, you'll probably think this is a bit dry and crunchy.
But if you're looking for your next fairytale retelling, I think you could do a whole lot worse than Stitching Snow.
However, I also think this one is going to be hit or miss with fans of this genre.
Basically, don't come crying to me if you don't like it.
I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!


Olivia-Savannah said...

I feel like it is a shame that the setting wasn't too interesting and although the romance wasn't rubbish, it wasn't anything amazing either. I have to say though, I don't think retellings are rip offs. I love retellings of fairytales and all that!

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