Briar rose by Jana OliverAvailable now
What's it about?For Briar Rose, life is anything but a fairy tale. She's stuck in a small town in deepest Georgia with parents who won't let her out of their sight, a bunch of small-minded, gossiping neighbours and an evil ex who's spreading nasty rumours about what she may or may not have done in the back of his car. She's tired of it all, so when, on her sixteenth birthday, her parents tell her that she is cursed and will go to sleep for a hundred years when the clock strikes midnight, she's actually kind of glad to leave it all behind. She says her goodbyes, lies down, and closes her eyes . . . And then she wakes up. Cold, alone and in the middle of the darkest, most twisted fairy tale she could ever have dreamed of. Now Briar must fight her way out of the story that has been created for her, but she can't do it alone. She never believed in handsome princes, but now she's met one her only chance is to put her life in his hands, or there will be no happy ever after and no waking up.
Picking up Briar rose, I wasn't sure what to expect from this modern day retelling of Sleeping beauty, I questioned how the fairy tale would fit into our world, but I needn't have worried because Oliver did a great job of making it seem believable.
Only a small portion is set in the present in Georgia, while the rest is set in Briar's dream, when, instead of dying she awakens in a literal fairy tale and must find a way to fight her way out if she wants to live.
I really loved this mix of reality and fairy tale, it gave the story a ring of truth and gave it all a magical feeling, while also being a completely new take on a classic story.
This is my first book by Jana Oliver and I found her writing to be on point throughout, the world building was great and imaginative, while still leaving room for me to daydream about how it looked as well.
I liked the characters and the back story and was pleasantly surprised at some twists that I hadn't been expecting and at Oliver's own little add ons to the story.
So, if you like your fairy tales dark and scary then I would recommend picking up Briar rose right away, its a great book set in a richly imagined world with some wonderful characters.
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