Wintersong – S. Jae Jones

ISBN;  9781250079213. February 7th 2017 by Thomas Dunne Books.

All her life, nineteen-year-old Liesl has heard tales of the beautiful, mysterious Goblin King. He is the Lord of Mischief, the Ruler Underground, and the muse around which her music is composed. Yet, as Liesl helps shoulder the burden of running her family’s inn, her dreams of composition and childish fancies about the Goblin King must be set aside in favor of more practical concerns.

But when her sister Käthe is taken by the goblins, Liesl journeys to their realm to rescue her sister and return her to the world above. The Goblin King agrees to let Käthe go—for a price. The life of a maiden must be given to the land, in accordance with the old laws. A life for a life, he says. Without sacrifice, nothing good can grow. Without death, there can be no rebirth. In exchange for her sister’s freedom, Liesl offers her hand in marriage to the Goblin King. He accepts.

Down in the Underground, Liesl discovers that the Goblin King still inspires her—musically, physically, emotionally. Yet even as her talent blossoms, Liesl’s life is slowly fading away, the price she paid for becoming the Goblin King’s bride. As the two of them grow closer, they must learn just what it is they are each willing to sacrifice: her life, her music, or the end of the world.

I bought this book because I thought I would really enjoy it. The plot sounded fab! I then put it off until a few friends and I were ready to buddy read it. (Buddy Reading is like book group reading, but you discuss it as you go along.) I buddy read this book with Abbey and Sara. We split it into the four parts the book has and discussed what we thought when we had all each reached the end of each.

I had heard so many great things about this book. I was super excited to get started. Having finished it, I feel this book was badly over hyped. Going in, I knew a little about it. I knew it was loosely based on Labyrinth and I knew some of the legends on the Goblin King from around Europe. My biggest issue with knowing this was just how exactly similar The Goblin King (GK from here on our) was to it’s inspiration. From the way GK looked to the way GK acted, I’d seen it before. I started to get bored of him very quickly.

Liesl was just as bad. I felt she didn’t have a backbone and didn’t know what on earth she actually wanted. She flipped flopped so badly when it came to her decisions. She never saw the consequences of any of her actions, and as a main character I was severely disappointed. Liesl made me want to take her by the shoulders and shake her. Hard. Some would say it’s because she was under GK’s spell, but honestly it didn’t seem like she was under a spell at all to me. She just couldn’t make her mind up.

The character interactions and positions in Liesl’s life was very stereotypical. Take her and Kathe for example. Kathe was the beautiful sister, the one everyone adored or wanted the attention of, whilst Liesl was the shadowing sister, nothing remarkable about her. Personally, I can see why people would flock to Kathe over Liesl. Liesl didn’t seem to have much of a personality in comparison to many other characters. Her parents had more personality than her, and the were hardly in the book. I did like Thistle and Twig. They made me laugh on a few occasions.

I loved how important music was in this book. It’s one of the things that kept my attention throughout.

The plot generally felt like it was full of fluff, but when it got to the point, I really enjoyed it.

Honestly, I’m so torn by this book. I will be reading the sequel to find out what happens next.

3 out of 5 stars.

Buy Here.


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