I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Blurb: Darkness waits for you in the Hinterland, a pitch-dark fairy tale world where a young woman spends a night with Death, brides are wed to a mysterious house in the trees and an enchantress is killed twice – and still lives. Once you enter, you may never leave…
Title: Tales from the Hinterland
Author: Melissa Albert
Publisher: Penguin Books, part of Penguin Random House
Genre: Fiction, YA, Gothic, Fantasy, Fairytales
The Hinterland is a world of whispers and secrets, where Death walks unnoticed and girls become stars. Delve into this selection of twelve fairytales and lose yourself in stories to appeal to your gothic nature.
A book full of gothic style fairytales is everything I’ve ever wanted – and this fits the bill exactly. There’s twelve stories in this book that covers everything from dalliances with Death, enchanted houses and clockwork creations to skinned maidens and arranged marriages with unknown men, there really is a bit of everything. This is my first time reading anything by this author and she has me hooked! The writing style is so rich and fluid that I was so swept up in the stories, I didn’t want them to end. For people, like me, who have read lots of fairytales and retellings, this book perfectly brings you into that world immediately with the classic wording associated with the genre and lots of unexplained magic to keep you trapped within these worlds. I’d also note that because there’s twelve stories in this book, it’s perfect for dipping in and out of if you’re after a read that you can pick up and put down whenever you need to.
There’s not much else I can praise without giving lots of spoilers (and I’d hate to ruin these tales for anyone) so this is me taking a second to reaffirm just how much I think you should read this book! Also, as far as I know, the Hinterland is also the setting for this author’s other books (The Hazel Wood and The Night Country) which also promise the same sort of fairytale style so they’d be great to check out if you enjoy this one.
As for what I disliked about this book, my only gripe would be that I wanted the stories to be longer! That’s not really a complaint, more of a testament to how much I enjoyed it, but some of the stories left me wanting to know more. I’d also note that there were some points where I feel like the book is targeted at an older audience, despite being YA so perhaps not for young readers who are just venturing into this section (unless they’re unfazed by darker things!).
Overall, I’d really recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of fairytales, especially if you like them with a healthy dose of darkness and decay!
Have you read this book? Or maybe you’ve read something similar? What did you think? I’d love to know!
You can always find me over on Twitter if you’d like to discuss this book (or any others that I’ve featured) in more detail 😌