Author: Danielle Paige
Date of Publication: 6th October 2016
An ARC copy of this book was provided in exchange for an honest review. My thanks go to Danielle Paige, Bloomsbury and Netgalley for the opportunity
This book really drew me in with the concept. I’m a total and utter sucker for fairy tale re-tellings and a Snow Queen type retelling sounded just up my street. Unfortunately, it turns out that this book was several time zones away from my street.
Firstly, what I liked; I really liked the idea. It sounded a little different from the usual, run of the mill re-tellings I’m used to picking up. I also liked the world itself – mirrors are a cool portal to another world in a lot of stories, but I like the trope and so was happy to run with it. Likewise, I have seen the whole “mental institution patient turns out to by world saving princess” thing done a thousand times – but I love it when it’s done well. A world frozen over by an evil overlord sounds very Narnia, but again, I like Narnia, so why not give a re-telling of its central concept a chance?
However the things I didn’t like could probably fill a significantly longer book than Stealing Snow. It felt rushed beyond belief – way too many plot threads, half fulfilled characters, insipid bad guys…we skipped from happening to happening with barely a pause for breath. There were moments of good writing hidden in amongst the full on sprint to the finish line, but they were almost buried under the intense and yet also strangely unfulfilling plotting and pacing.
I also full on detested the love quadrangle. Yes you heard that right. As in square. The main character had not just two love interests, but three. This is excessive in the confines of any story. In one which seemed to struggle with pacing so much as Stealing Snow, it was a major negative. For me, the least featured love interest was my favourite; Kai. I think he has a lot of secrets which have yet to be revealed; and his sister being a part of the story too gave him some grounding for me. Jagger and Bale were equally uninteresting but if I had to cut one then try hard Robber Jagger would have to go.
Then, finally, the greatest weakness; Snow herself. Princess Snow is as dull as they get. There wasn’t anything I can recall from reading Stealing Snow which made her stand out for me. She grasped the use of her powers with startling ease. She was locked up in an institution for a number of years but seems completely sane – which no one, not staff or visitors or other patients seemed to notice. She has men falling all over themselves to kiss her. Her every action seems orchestrated to make convenient plot points add up.
Overall, I’m not hooked enough to seek out the sequels, which is a massive shame. This seems like such a fantastic concept, I know that Danielle Paige can write well. However Stealing Snow did nothing for me and I can’t really recommend.