- File Size: 183 KB
- Print Length: 21 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publication Date: October 5, 2011
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B005T63ETE
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,521,860 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Rose in Winter Kindle Edition
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Rosabel is a self-conscious young woman attending her first Festival of Renewal. She clings to her father as long as she can, nervous. Her father goes to the table for mead, and Rosabel is alone when Spindlesanks arrives. After some usual clowning-around, Spindleshanks approaches Rosabel. He asks her to be his bride, and there is no jest in his proposal. His love is pure and unconditional; it carries a sense of serenity, and conjures images of a mythical wonderland. Rosabel is shocked by the sudden depth of feeling Spindleshanks inspires, and she backs away from him. Spindleshanks leaves her with a perfect rose, despite the depths of winter surrounding the castle. A year later, and the scene repeats: again, Rosabel is left aching for a love she can't comprehend and that she must reject because it does not fit in with her dreams of court life. On the third year, the fairytale shatters.
Loughin paints the story of love lost in poignant scenes taut with beauty. She allows the reader to understand Rosabel's choices, even though they break your heart a surely as they break Spindleshanks'. A rose in winter is an improbable thing, as improbable as true and unconditional love. Should you encounter either, hold it close; though the thorns may prick, though the reality of your love may not match what you planned, don't let go. Nothing, Loughin's tale asserts, is worse than losing that one thing that is more precious than all the King's land: love.
So it works when the trickster Spindleshanks first appears and the protagonist sees her future in his eyes. Against my own will, I found myself having to learn what happened next, and enjoyed every step of the way. This is a spoiler-free review, but the choice made at the end of the story seems like the sort of things that fans will debate endlessly - the author even addresses it at the end. So be ready to be ambivalent!
Overall, worthy of five stars, and I do not give those out willy-nilly. The prose is top-notch, the characters live and breathe (for the most part - the king is a slight caricature but forgivable given the setting), and the plot arc is logical and satisfying, even if the ending troubles you.
Is it love? Has he enchanted her? Will she give up her prince, a title, comfort of home and hearth to follow Spindleshanks? Read "Rose in Winter" to find out.
Just beautiful and I would highly recommend this story to anyone wanting to see what a FANTASTIC Indie author can do.
Well done Ms. Loughin. Very, very well done.
Beautifully spun scenery and animated lifelike characters make this story easy to read but the real message behind it makes it hard to forget