Thursday, May 05, 2011

Entwined by Heather Dixon

Azalea is trapped. Just when she should feel that everything is before her . . . beautiful gowns, dashing suitors, balls filled with dancing . . . it's taken away. All of it. The Keeper understands. He's trapped, too, held for centuries within the walls of the palace. And so he extends an invitation.
Every night, Azalea and her eleven sisters may step through the enchanted passage in their room to dance in his silver forest.
But there is a cost.
The Keeper likes to keep things.
Azalea may not realize how tangled she is in his web until it is too late.

What a thoroughly enjoyable book! I had no idea what to expect when I picked this up, but I certainly didn’t think I’d love it this much.

I’m most definitely a fan of fairy tale retellings, and Entwined is based on The Twelve Dancing Princesses. Azalea is the oldest of twelve sisters, and she takes them to a magical place where they can all deal with the death of their mother. They dance the night away, each night, until their slippers are completely worn out.

This story is about love and loss, and how different people deal with it in different ways. Some want to be closer to their lost loved one, and others need to distance themselves. But they both feel acute pain. This is much of the conflict between Azalea and her father, which leads to misunderstandings common between teenage daughters and fathers. I thought this was really well done.

The basic story is very compelling, though a little out-there at times. But I just took that as part of the fairy tale thing, so it didn’t bother me. I liked the way the new king would be chosen—a nice modern twist to traditional fairy tales—and I liked the way the author went about the process. The characters were likeable, even when Azalea was being a difficult teen. :)

Overall, this is a light and fun story for teens of all ages. Definitely recommended.

11 comments:

Jessie Harrell said...

you're the second person I've heard who's been pleasantly surprised by the novel. Adding to my TBR pile now.

fictionforge said...

This one has caught my eye on more than one occasion. I think I'll be adding it to my TBR list as well now!

thanks for this review.

khashway said...

Nice review. I've haven't heard much about this book yet. I'll have to check it out.

Samita (Book Purring) said...

Wow. I'll try to check it out, I did sign up for a YA historical fiction challenge so I have an excuse! :)

brenda said...

This isn't a book I'd have picked up w/o a recommend. Thank you.. I need a really good book to get lost in.

Natalie Aguirre said...

I've heard good things about this too. It's on my list to read, especially because you liked it and I enjoy fairy tale re-tellings too.

Tabitha said...

Jessie - I had no idea what to expect, but I certainly didn't expect to like it so much. The dancing parts were a delight to read.

Fictionforge - I hope you enjoy it!

Kelly - thanks! It's a good fairy tale retelling, and I've never read a retelling of the twelve dancing princesses. I thought Entwined did a good job of keeping to that fairy tale while adding elements of its own.

Samita - I don't know if this qualifies as historical fiction since it's a fairy tale retelling and takes place in a fictional world. The customs aren't traditional, either (something I liked about it). I think the customs strike a good balance between modern and tradition.

Brenda - I hope you enjoy it!

Natalie - I really enjoyed it, partly, I think, because the fairy tale itself is so unique. And I liked the balance of modern with tradition. But the dancing is what really sold me on it. Each dance scene was truly delightful. I hope you enjoy it!

Deborah Lawrenson said...

I too have read good things about this one - and what an exquisite cover!

Piloting The Ship Of Fools said...

I'll recommend this to my 19-year-old. She has a penchant for retold fairy tales and is still waiting to find one she likes better than Ella Enchanted.

Mflick1 said...

I love the retelling of a story... i think its super creative and makes me super jealous! This is the second time I have seen this book. Thanks for the post!

Hyacinth Marius said...

The author clearly understands the relationship of sisters which sets the tone for this magical and romantic story. Plus you get three romances from this one story, but the real meaning isn't about romance or breaking curses but breaking barriers between you and the ones you love.
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