Review: The Lady and the Fox by Kelly Link (My True Love Gave to Me)

Yesterday I told you that I’ll be reviewing one story a day from My True Love Gave to Me until Christmas, sort of like my own “twelve days of Christmas.” I thought it’d also be fun to review one story a day as well. I reviewed Rainbow Rowell’s “Midnights” yesterday.

Today I’m reviewing Kelly Link’s story, “The Lady and the Fox.”

My True Love Gave to Me     IMG_20141214_172749

This one was weird, you guys. Probably two pages in I wrote this note: “Writing style might kill me.” I’ve never read anything by Kelly Link – I don’t think I’d actually heard of her until I saw her name in the book, so I didn’t know what to expect. Let me give you an example of the writing style:

The room is full of adult Honeywells talking about the things that Honeywells always talk about, which is to say everything, horses and houses and God and grouting, tanning salons and – of course – theater. Always theater. Honeywells like to talk. When Honeywells have no lines to speak, they improvise. All the world’s a stage. – page 24

The reason it bothered me is it’s a mix of super long sentences and really, really short ones. It was strange to read and took a while to get used to, but by the end, I didn’t even notice it anymore.

On the other hand, there were some descriptions I really liked, such as “Unnaturally natural” (page 25), which is just really fun to say, and “Snow is predicted, snow falls” (page 27), which is simple and straightforward.

The story is also strange, but in a good way. Miranda is the goddaughter of Elspeth Honeywell, and as her mother is in jail, she spends every Christmas with Elspeth and her son Daniel. The Christmas they are both 11, they see a man standing outside the window, watching. Through the years, Miranda continues to meet with the man – Fenny – but only when it snows and only on Christmas. He never ages, and she finds out that he’s stuck with “the Lady.” I’m sure you can predict what happens – which wasn’t nearly as annoying as you’d think. I enjoyed the story and was as charmed by Fenny as Miranda was.

I wasn’t expecting the fantasy aspect to the story, but I just really loved the magical bits. The scene near the end when everything comes to a head was really cool. So: somewhat annoying writing style but really cool story.

Review: Midnights by Rainbow Rowell (My True Love Gave to Me)

When I bought My True Love Gave to Me (edited by Stephanie Perkins and including short stories by wonderful authors like Rainbow Rowell, Holly Black, and Stephanie herself), I knew I wanted to read one of the twelve stories each day until Christmas. You know, have my own “twelve days of Christmas.” 🙂 Then I thought you guys might enjoy mini reviews of each of the stories, instead of one review of the whole book, which might exclude some of the stories. At least, I hope you’ll enjoy that. Because that’s what I’m going to do. That’s what I’m doing. Yeah… I hope you’ll stick around and read all twelve – one a day until Christmas.

My True Love Gave to Me     IMG_20141214_163141

The first story in My True Love Gave to Me is by Rainbow Rowell. It’s called “Midnights” and it documents several New Year’s Eves at “almost midnight” between Mags and Noel – from the beginning in 2014 when Mags is apparently hiding from Noel, back to when the met in 2011, and then through the New Year’s Eve parties for the next two years until we find ourselves back in 2014.

This story is very evidently by Rainbow Rowell. Okay, I’ve only read one book by her (Attachments, which I loved), but the writing was Rowell – hope that makes sense. She’s got wonderful descriptions that I just love, like this one:

He looked like his teeth were too wide for his mouth, and his mouth was too wide for his face. – page 4

Maybe it isn’t super beautiful or anything, but I can just picture Noel perfectly. In my opinion, that’s the mark of a great writer. The story is also funny in Rowell’s somewhat dry and not overly obvious way. An example:

Mags felt it when Noel walked in. (He came in through the back door, and a bunch of cold air came in with him.) – page 13

My only complaint with this story is that it was too short. Because of that, it felt rushed in parts and it was harder to see the growth that occurred in the characters. Mostly, I just really wanted this to be a much longer story – you know, a book. I could’ve read a lot more about these characters.

Check back tomorrow when I’ll be reviewing the second story in the book, Kelly Link’s “The Lady and the Fox.”

December TBR

Yesterday was the start of December. There are 30 days left in 2014. How is this possible? So crazy. Anyway, I decided to try this challenge on Instagram (one of those you post a themed picture every day of the month). I’m really, really bad at them, but I figured I’d try. I always have fun for the 5-10 days I actually post, so why not? 🙂

The post for the 1st of December was your TBR for the month. I thought it’d be fun to see what everyone else was planning to read this month. So here’s mine. Tell me what you plan to read in December in the comments! ALSO, I completely forgot to include My True Love Gave to Me in the picture, and I plan on reading one essay from that a day for the days leading up to Christmas. 🙂 I will probably read more than what’s in this picture, but I don’t want to feel obligated.

Legend by Marie Lu / Linger by Maggie Stiefvater (this is a reread) / Every Day by David Levithan / A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray / The Book of Strange New Things by Michel Faber (which I’ve already started and really like so far)

WWW Wednesday [5]

WWW Wednesdays are hosted by Should Be Reading. To play along, just answer the following three questions: (As always, all titles are linked to their corresponding Goodreads pages)

  • What are you currently reading?Afterworlds

I’m currently reading Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld. It’s pretty great so far. I haven’t gotten that far into it yet as I’ve been a little busy (or relaxing with arts and crafts like yesterday), but I hope to read more of it today. I really like the alternating chapters between real life and Darcy’s fantasy world in her novel. So cool.

  • What did you recently finish reading?

The Young ElitesI finished reading Marie Lu’s The Young Elites a few days ago and reviewed it on Monday. I thought it was absolutely incredible. I was super impressed by my first Lu book. Her world building was amazing and I cannot wait for the next book. The Young Elites is one of my favorite books I’ve read this year. I gave it a 9.5, which should tell you how much I loved it.

  • What do you think you’ll read next?IMG_20141101_104327

I’m not sure. I had this awesome haul last week, and I’m not sure what I want to read next from it. What do you guys think? Want to recommend something to me? Let me know in the comments! 🙂 Here are the titles I want to choose from: My True Love Gave to Me, Black Ice, Belzharor Messenger of Fear.

 

Stacking the Shelves: New YA Library Books!

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga’s Reviews.

I only do this meme sporadically when I have something I’m really excited about, and this week I do. Pretty much all of the YA books I ordered for my library for the month of October came in this past week, and of course, I checked most of them out.

I already read Marie Lu’s The Young Elites (review soon), but these are three more I checked out. I also bought My True Love Gave to Me, which is a collection of holiday themed short stories by some awesome authors (Stephanie Perkins, Jenny Han, David Levithan, etc.). I was going to wait until closer to the holidays, but after seeing some glowing reviews of the stories, I decided that I couldn’t wait, so I headed to Target and bought it. I’m looking forward to starting it soon.

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My True Love Gave to Me by various authors / Black Ice by Becca Fitzpatrick / Belzhar by Meg Wolitzer / Messenger of Fear by Michael Grant

What about you guys? Did you buy any new books this week?