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Death Be Not Proud: A Fairy Tale Retold Paperback – March 24, 2017
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More things I liked? Stunning New Zealand scenery and vivid Jazz Age setting. This book does have alcohol and cigarettes in it to carry on the time period. While the story does not have an explicit Christian thread that's easy to find, its interplay of love and justice, accepting or abdicating responsibility, and hinted character arcs of maturity, offer plenty of food for thought.
But the best effect of this book is simply the sheer joy of it. It's a book that invites you to laugh, to hold your breath, to fear, to imagine, to strive for the solution. In short, it invites you into a myriad of intense emotions that any reader--every reader--wants to experience. It's a living jewel of a story, and perhaps the sheer aliveness of its characters is what I love about it so much.
I was gifted with a copy for an honest review.
(I've since read some Mary Stewart, and if you like her mysteries, you'll enjoy this one.)
In fact, I found the setting affected me more powerfully than the time period, for despite the twenties references the story felt timeless, which worked for me given that it's also a retold fairy tale. And of course one of the most important themes - what is justice, and what price should any person be willing to pay to see justice done - are timeless questions.