Bitter Snow Series Review + Giveaway

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“We are the rulers of Midwinter. In the most powerful cold of the winter, in the deepest dark of the year, we hold sway, and all of your hearth fires cannot stand against us. We are the winds that howl down the chimneys and extinguish your candles. We are the northern lights and the hungry wolves; the bitter crack of ice and the killing frost. The raging blizzard and the deep, soft, final sleep of those lost forever in the snow.”

 

Bitter Snow is a modern retelling of the fairy tale “The Snow Queen,” in nine novellas. It’s my all-time favorite fairy tale, about a girl’s quest to save her childhood friend from the evil Snow Queen, through her courage, determination, and the strength of her love for him. Each volume is about 80-90 pages (32,000 words). The next three installments are scheduled for release in spring/summer 2014, with the final three to follow later in the year. 

 

Follow The Tour HERE

 

Bitter Snow

Bitter Snow Vol. #1

Lauren Sweet

Genre: YA Paranormal Romance

Release Date: December 5, 2013

ASIN: B00H2XXHVM

Pages: 85

Word Count: 32,000

Goodreads Rating:  4.00

My Rating: 4.5

 

Book Description:

Whatever you do, don’t open the door.

All Gilly Breslin wants for her sixteenth birthday is for her best friend Kai to see her as more than just the girl next door he’s known forever. So when she receives a mysterious, romantic invitation to meet him at midnight, she knows she has to go. 

But it’s St. Nicholas’s Eve, the ancient festival of Bellsnichol, when demons roam the dark winter landscape. Tradition demands that everyone in the tiny town of Bremerton stay inside, doors shut tight against evil.

Gilly thinks it’s just a quaint old superstition. She has no idea that a malevolent power has been unleashed in Bremerton—with Kai as its target. But when she answers her door at midnight, her romantic date turns deadly…and she’s drawn into an ancient web of fear and darkness that threatens everything she loves.

Amazon    BN

My Take On The Book:

 

I am a sucker for a good cover, that’s for sure. I was drawn in by the cover of a girl with these exotic yellow eyes, I scrolled down and read the synopsis. Holy cow, I was hooked, I needed to read this series. I love fairytales (I own a book with the real Grimm fairytales and I was morbidly fascinated with it) and modern retellings but the tale of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Snow Queen has always captivated me in a creepy sort of way. So anywho, the cover is breathtaking and I definitely saw Gilly and her wolf eyes when looking at the cover.

So since this is a series of  books made up of 9 novellas with very close release dates (Thank God!) I decided to do a basic review on each book until I’ve read all three and can revisit this post with a more in depth review.

As I said earlier, I’m kinda a sucker for a good cover and anything fairytale so I squealed when I got invited to review it. So simply put it was almost perfect. Truthfully, I think the ‘almost’ comes from the unfinished feel. It might not make much sense right now when I explain it but, you can definitely tell it was cut and that there is another part yet to come. It feels more like a t.v. show. Also, there was a bit of description overload… not something I would normal complain about but I got a bit lost when reading the more thrilling scenes and I had to go back a reread it slowly so my mind could sketch out the scenes.

As for what I love, sigh, there is just too much. The intro was amazing and served to give me goosebumps to end all goosebumps and set the mood quite perfectly.  Next we have the characters, in this one we meet them all but the 4 that stand out most are Gilly, Kai (sweet, easily entrances, adorable Kai), Nelson and Annabel… I loved them, I even like Perchta ::shivers:: and Bran. This was a great introduction book, perfect for beginning the series.

 

4.5 Quills

This is a definite must read, compelling and mysterious, creepy and sweet and just a dash of sad. Grab a copy and see for yourself… but be warned, there is a cliffhanger ending. I kind of wish this story was in print because I would love to own a copy 

 

 

Dark Solstice

Bitter Snow Vol. # 2

Lauren Sweet

Genre: YA Paranormal Romance

Release Date: December 21, 2013

Cover Artist: Jeanne Gransee Barker

ASIN: B00HFKJDN8

Pages: 85

Word Count: 32,000

Goodreads Rating:  N/A

My Rating: 4.5

 

Book Description:

 

On St. Nicholas’s Eve, the festival of Bellsnichol, Gilly Breslin opened her door to an ancient evil. A demon queen who’s slowly destroying Gilly’s best friend Kai—the only guy she’s ever loved.

But it’s not just Kai. Every guy who falls in love with the Snow Queen turns evil—and every guy who sees her falls in love with her.

Gilly’s only hope is to enlist the secret guardians of Bremerton, who may hold the key to banishing the Snow Queen and her minions. But with the town erupting in violence and the demons’ power increasing as the winter nights grow longer, she’s in a race against time to stop them before it’s too late.

Amazon    BN

 

My Take On The Book:

 

I am completely and utterly heartbroken. January 5th is too far off and I need to read the last book now! Now while I am every bit aware that Kai is under a spell, his words are just devastating and my heart shatters for Gilly every time he speaks to her.

Gilly is an amazing main character, loyal and strong with a good sense of right and wrong and while she does notice the beauty of the other men in her life, she is loyal to her heart and so not wishy-washy like other young main female characters. I love that she isn’t caving because things are getting tough and a pretty boy is showing her some attention. She knows who she wants and who she cares about most and while she appreciates the other men she stay true to her heart.

Niko is another great character. I liked him in Volume One, but know he’s grown on me like a parasite and I want, no need for him to have a happy ending. Preferably with a beautiful blonde that I also love, Annabel. They are both such fierce and loyal friends to Gilly. While Annabel has no idea about the demons running amuck, she is still a great friend to Gilly when it comes to the evil Perchta and Kai.

Honestly, the only reason this one didn’t score a 5 was because the story is unfinished. This is an amazing retelling. Short, fast paced, easily to read, descriptive and most people can finish it within the hour.

 

4.5 Quills

January 5th, hurry up and get here please! I need to see how this story unfolds. Make sure you check back for my review on the final book once it becomes available and I read it.

 

 

Twelfth Night

Bitter Snow Vol. #3

Lauren Sweet

Genre: YA Paranormal Romance

Release Date:  January 5, 2014

Cover Artist: Jeanne Gransee Barker

Number of pages: 85

Word Count:  32,000

 

Book Description:

Winter demons have invaded the tiny town of Bremerton, and sixteen-year-old Gilly Breslin is the only one who can banish them. The only problem is, she doesn’t know how.

Digging through the town’s historical archives, she and her friend Niko piece together clues to an ancient ritual to send the demons back to the dark realm they sprang from.

But the Snow Queen has plans of her own. Her power is greatest at the darkest time of the year, and her evil influence is spreading insidiously through the town, leaving Gilly wondering if there’s anyone left who can be trusted.

The demons must be banished by Twelfth Night, or the town will be lost. But to do it, Gilly may have to sacrifice everything that matters to her—including her soul.

 

 

About The Author 

I was born and raised in New Jersey, and books were a big part of my childhood. When I was about three and a half, I became obsessed with a Little Golden Book about a goat that gets a bucket stuck on its head. Since no one would read me the goat book as often as I wanted, I learned to read it myself—and haven’t stopped reading since. It was only inevitable that I turned to writing, so I could create more of the kind of stories that I like to read!

My favorite genres are mystery, sci-fi and paranormal/fantasy. I’ve always been fascinated by myths and fairy tales, and I love incorporating elements of ancient lore into modern stories. I have a Master of Fine Arts degree in Creative Writing from the University of Alaska Anchorage, and I currently live near Portland, OR, where I am a freelance writer and editor. My other esoteric skills include astrology, figure skating, and the ability to do a perfect split.

Twitter: @writerlaurens

Enter The Giveaway Here

 

Win Gilly’s necklace from Bitter Snow Volume Two: Dark Solstice!

In folklore, iron protects against the influence of evil spirits. Handmade from real horseshoe nails and sterling silver by Connie Pardini of Wirestorm Creations (www.wirestormcreations.com), this necklace is a replica of the one Gilly wears to protect herself from harmful spells and illusions.

 

Open to US Shipping, retail value of necklace $80

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Thanks for stopping by,

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“I received a free copy of the book from the author for my honest opinion. I was in no way compensated for this review and all opinions are expressly my own”

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