Thursday, 13 May 2010

Ash by Melinda Lo



Pages - 291

Challenges - GBLT challenge and Once Upon A Time Challenge.

Published in 2010 by Hodder's Childrens Books.

Aisling's mother died at midsummer. She had fallen sick so suddenly that some of the villagers wondered if the fairies had come and taken her, for she was still young and beautiful. She was buried three days later beneath the hawthorn tree behind the house, just as twilight was darkening the sky.

Ash follows a similar storyline to Cinderella, only there is a rather unusual twist in the end. After Ash's mother passes away, her father remarries, only to fall ill and die shortly after, leaving his new wife with lots of debts. Ash is put to work for the family in order to pay for the debts. The king announces that his son will soon be looking for a bride and a battle amongst the females of the town commences. Ash forms an agreement with Sidhean, who grants her a couple of wishes in return for her living with him for ever. Will Ash follow the agreement, or will her heart lead her in another direction.

I know a lot of people haven't really enjoyed this book, but I have to say I absolutely loved it. I found Ash to be a charming lead character, who had to overcome such hardship to find her true love. You feel her pain, after the death of her mother and you only want to nurture her as she grows up. I thought she was portrayed as a very strong female character.

The twist was totally unexpected to me and really an interesting surprise. I know that some people have felt the twist should have been more obvious from the beginning, but I have to disagree. I found the more I read this book, the more I couldn't put it down. I was utterly compelled to finish it quickly.

I found the writing very descriptive and thoughtful. I also found the fairy domain to be intriguing and the cross over between fairy and reality to be believable. For a debut novel, I thought it was brilliant, and I can't work out why others didn't enjoy it.

If you enjoy fairytale retellings, then you will enjoy this one, especially as it doesn't follow the storyline completely. I look forward to reading more by Malinda Lo.

18 comments:

  1. I didn't enjoy it for many reasons really (namely because I found the writing clunky and unpolished ), but I won't spam your comments box with them all :P I'm glad you did, though. I wish I had too.

    ReplyDelete
  2. great review, I would love to read this one cos it sounds so interesting, even if people disliked it

    ReplyDelete
  3. Heard so many mixed things about this book, I'm not too sure if I want to read it or not. What really put me off was the comparison with The Girl With Glass Feet (yet to be reviewed) that I disliked.

    ReplyDelete
  4. You've got me curious about the twist at the end!

    ReplyDelete
  5. I really enjoyed it too, though I have to admit my happiness about the book was a bit marred by a horrible encounter with the author herself...

    ReplyDelete
  6. Oh I do, I do love fairy tale retellings. This is going straight on my list! Love the sound of it :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. Ooh, I wish Amanda would tell us about her horrible encounter!

    I haven't read this one mainly because I have a really bizarre attachment to the story of Cinderella and don't like people messing it up ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  8. Nymeth, I don't mind you telling me what you hated. In fact I am really curious. I didn't notice the writing as I was so wrapped up in the story.

    Blodeuedd - you will love it.

    Petty Witter - it is nothing like The Girl with Glass Feet. I can't see how people are even comparing them. It is very much a quick read too.

    Bermudaonion - all I can say is, remain openminded.

    Amanda - pray tell more! You can't leave us wondering what happened with the author.

    Carmen - you will love it!

    Aarti - I shall stalk Amanda until she gives more information now. She can't leave us in suspense like that.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Vivienne, I am so interested in this book now. Your enthusiasm is contagious. I will add Ash to my TBR stacks.

    ReplyDelete
  10. This sounds like a really good fairytale re-telling, and I love the cover!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I was one of those who didn't like this much. It was okay but the writing didn't quite hold me and there were so many fairytales that I couldn't keep track. I am glad that you liked it. I love fairytale retellings and I was hoping to enjoy this more.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I don't think I'd read this book, but the cover is awesome.

    ReplyDelete
  13. What a pretty cover!
    It does sound good, glad you enjoyed it.
    http://thebookworm07.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  14. I have read quite a few mixed reviews of this one too but I think it's one I'd still like to try out. The story sounds like it has a lot of potential and I think I'd probably enjoy it. Is there a sequel to this book?

    ReplyDelete
  15. I love the cover of this book and the story sounds intriguing. Thanks for your review!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Thanks for the review, Viv! I've read some reviews about the book and they have mixed thoughts about it. I'm going to read for myself one day. The cover is pretty!

    ReplyDelete
  17. I'm really glad you liked it!

    (Also, really curious to hear about Amanda's bad experience with the author!)

    ReplyDelete
  18. I've also heard of a lot of people who didn't enjoy this one, but I still plan to pick it up. My library's got a copy, so I have easy access to it.

    And I'm with Aarti: I'm curious about Amanda's horrible encounter.

    ReplyDelete

Hiya, thanks for stopping by, it is always nice to hear what you have to say, so do leave a comment if you have time.