Books · Reviews

Book Thoughts: The Winter of the Witch (Katherine Arden)

Arden, Katherine - Winternight Trilogy 3 The Winter of the Witch


Title: The Winter of the Witch (Winternight Trilogy #3)
Author: Katherine Arden
Genre: Fiction / Fantasy Pages: 354
First published: 2019
Edition: Hardback, published in 2019 by Del Rey

With an uncertain destiny ahead of her, Vasya learns surprising truths of her past as she desperately tries to save Russia, Morozko, and the magical world she treasures. But she may not be able to save them all..

What a delight this series has been and this third and final book did it justice.

In the course of the three books Katherine Arden’s story telling has been stellar and very consistent, but I feel the writing in this final book was the best. I loved the direction in which she took this story. It was dark in places and there were deaths that broke my heart, but there was enought light to not be too heavy.

The atmosphere throughout this book was incredible, even if maybe I wished Midnight had been described a little more.

All I can say is that I love this world that Arden has created. The characters were wonderfully human and we are made to see that good and evil are not always black and white. I loved Vasya’s story, her struggles and her dilemmas. Her choices were not always the right ones, but they were understandable. Her strength of character make her a wonderful heroine.

I really enjoyed the ending of this book, but also that not everything was resolved. It did not need to be.

This is definitely a trilogy I will read again in the future.

6 out of 7 stars



Books · Sunday Summary

Sunday Summary: 13 January 2019

ahdieh, renee - the wrath and the dawnbaker, jo - longbournI have had a pretty stellar reading week. I finished two novels: Longbourn (Jo Baker) and The Wrath and the Dawn (Renée Ahdieh), but I also finished an anthology, Winter, and a poetry collection, Wild Flowers (Michelle S Smith).


That is pretty good going for me.

smith, michelle s - wild flowersReading Wild Flowers did make me want to read more poetry, because when I do I actually really enjoy the experience. Last year I hardly read any poetry and I really need to change that!

Arden, Katherine - Winternight Trilogy 3 The Winter of the WitchI read the first chapter of the concluding book of the Winternight trilogy by Katherine Arden yesterday, as my eyes were drooping, wanting to go to sleep. I really hope The Winter of the Witch will be all I want it to be to complete a series I have loved the first two books of in style. I have only heard good things, but that does not always mean much.

ivey, eowyn - the snow childIn the week ahead I hope to read The Winter of the Witch and The Snow Child (Eowyn Ivey).

sue, eugene - the godolphin arabianI might read something else inbetween, so they don’t blur into one. I have a little book called The Godolphin Arabian, which is based on the story of one of the founding sires of the modern thoroughbred racehorse. It has been asking for me to read it and it’s only small. It was written in 1846 by Eugene Sue (in French), but this is a recent translation. It is only short and should be a quick fun read.

I hope to read at least 100 pages of The Winter of the Witch today, but I am not pushing myself today – I read plenty this week!

Happy Sunday!

Books · Reviews

Book Thoughts: Winternight Trilogy #2 – The Girl in the Tower (Katherine Arden)

The Girl in The Tower (The Bear and the Nightingale #2)


Title: The Girl in the Tower (The Bear and the Nightingale #2)
Author: Katherine Arden
Genre: Fiction / Fantasy / Fairytale
First published: to be published on 5 December 2017 by Del Rey
Edition: ARC e-book courtesy of the publisher via NetGalley

The Girl in the Tower follows on from The Bear and the Nightingale, but it has quite a different feel, but the writing is just as stellar. Vasya is now grown up and takes us on quite a ride, literally, as she spends quite a bit of time on her horse, Solovey. She manages to get herself into all sorts of trouble, from fighting bandits to masquerading as a boy to avoid being married off or worse, put in a convent.

I really enjoyed following this headstrong young woman on her adventures. Maybe this book missed some of that magic that the first book was filled with, but I still really enjoyed it. Katherine Arden’s storytelling is compelling and she transported me to Vasya’s world. I love how some characters don’t get much ‘page-time’, but still manage to feel fully formed and essential.

I will definitely be buying the print copy to re-read in the future.

6 out of 7 stars 

Books · Reviews

Book Thoughts: The Bear and the Nightingale (Katherine Arden)

Arden, Katherine - The Bear and the Nightingale


Title: The Bear and the Nightingale
Author: Katherine Arden
Genre: Fiction / Fantasy / Fairytale
First published: 2017
Edition: Hardback, published by Del Rey in 2017

This is a very atmospheric novel that quickly pulled me in. Based on Russian folklore it certainly evokes the feeling of the wild cold winter when mysterious things hunt the night.

I loved the fairy tale aspect of it and I felt completely immersed in Vasya’s cold harsh world. It is a tale so well woven, so full magic and wonder, and yet so full of innocence, that I have fallen in love with it. Arden’s use of words add to the sense of time and place wonderfully and though her writing is simple, it is deceptively lyrical and brings a smile to my face. I found myself rooting for Vasya throughout the book. A wonderfully strong female character.

Maybe the end felt a little rushed, but overall, I really loved this book and I am sure I will be reading it again in the future.

I would recommend this book to anyone who loves fairy tales or who likes to be whisked away to a different world.

6 out of 7 stars