Title: Girls Made of Snow and Glass
Author: Melissa Bashardoust
Genres: YA Fantasy, Retellings
Frozen meets The Bloody Chamber in this feminist fantasy reimagining of the Snow White fairytale
At sixteen, Mina’s mother is dead, her magician father is vicious, and her silent heart has never beat with love for anyone—has never beat at all, in fact, but she’d always thought that fact normal. She never guessed that her father cut out her heart and replaced it with one of glass. When she moves to Whitespring Castle and sees its king for the first time, Mina forms a plan: win the king’s heart with her beauty, become queen, and finally know love. The only catch is that she’ll have to become a stepmother.
Fifteen-year-old Lynet looks just like her late mother, and one day she discovers why: a magician created her out of snow in the dead queen’s image, at her father’s order. But despite being the dead queen made flesh, Lynet would rather be like her fierce and regal stepmother, Mina. She gets her wish when her father makes Lynet queen of the southern territories, displacing Mina. Now Mina is starting to look at Lynet with something like hatred, and Lynet must decide what to do—and who to be—to win back the only mother she’s ever known…or else defeat her once and for all.
Entwining the stories of both Lynet and Mina in the past and present, Girls Made of Snow and Glass traces the relationship of two young women doomed to be rivals from the start. Only one can win all, while the other must lose everything—unless both can find a way to reshape themselves and their story.
When I finished Girls Made of Snow and Glass last night, I was sitting in my reading chair covered in blankets, hugging the book while there were tears streaming down my face. And honestly, I think that’s all you have to read to know my feelings about this book. But I’ll gladly continue writing (or rather, raving) about this book.
Girls Made of Snow and Glass arrived unexpectedly on my doorstep one day, and that’s where the magic began (I know this sounds super cheesy, but it really feels that way). I almost didn’t pick it up because my ARC schedule was so incredibly busy this month, and I thought there was no way I could read it in time, but after my friend Lili from Utopia State of Mind told me she loved it, I decided to give it a try. And I’m so happy I did.
I fell in love with this book early on. The writing basically swept me off of my feet, and I was really struggling to decide whether I should try to take my time with it and savor it as much as possible, or to just read it in one sitting. I decided to do the former, and I really think that that made me enjoy the book more. I loved looking forward to sitting down each day and spending a little more time with the characters, who were absolutely wonderful, by the way.
The two main characters of the book are Mina and Lynet, and both of them are such complex and well-rounded characters, and I love them both so much. And their relationship is just the best?? I could sit here and write an entire essay on how much I love them, but I’m afraid I’d spoil the book so just trust me on this: you will adore them.
I’m always a bit weary about retellings. They can be amazing, but they can also feel a bit, well, cliché. This retelling, however, was incredibly well done. The nods to the original works were amazing, sometimes very subtle, but always absolutely brilliant. Some of the things Melissa Bashardoust came up with completely blew my mind, and just, I’m still not over this. I just want to reread the book and see what little details I missed.
The only thing I didn’t 100% love about this book was the world-building. I’m unable to put my finger on what it was exactly, but I felt like I wasn’t able to fully immerse myself in the world, and really picture everything clearly. There were descriptions, and I did feel like the author described everything quite clearly and beautifully, but something just felt a bit off.
Overall, you can see that I clearly loved this book very much. I loved the characters, the plot, the relationships, the writing, the dialogue, and basically everything. I want to read everything Melissa Bashardoust writes, and I cannot wait to see what brilliant story she’ll come up with next.
Also, in case I haven’t convinced you to pick this book up yet: there’s an f/f relationship in the book. It’s wonderful. Okay, I’ll shut up about the book now. Just, please go pick it up.