All her life, nineteen-year-old Liesl has heard tales of the beautiful, mysterious Goblin King. He is the Lord of Mischief, the Ruler Underground, and the muse around which her music is composed. Yet, as Liesl helps shoulder the burden of running her family’s inn, her dreams of composition and childish fancies about the Goblin King must be set aside in favor of more practical concerns.
But when her sister Käthe is taken by the goblins, Liesl journeys to their realm to rescue her sister and return her to the world above. The Goblin King agrees to let Käthe go—for a price. The life of a maiden must be given to the land, in accordance with the old laws. A life for a life, he says. Without sacrifice, nothing good can grow. Without death, there can be no rebirth. In exchange for her sister’s freedom, Liesl offers her hand in marriage to the Goblin King. He accepts.
Down in the Underground, Liesl discovers that the Goblin King still inspires her—musically, physically, emotionally. Yet even as her talent blossoms, Liesl’s life is slowly fading away, the price she paid for becoming the Goblin King’s bride. As the two of them grow closer, they must learn just what it is they are each willing to sacrifice: her life, her music, or the end of the world. – Goodreads Description
Wintersong is the best book I’ve read in a long time and it’s instantly become one of my favourite books ever. It’s such a perfect mix of fantasy, romance and intrigue that it was impossible to put it down. This book is loosely based on/ inspired by the film Labyrinth (which I watched only recently) and to be honest I enjoyed it so much more. Jae-Jones writing instantly draws you in with gorgeous prose and an almost ethereal style that it makes you feel as if you’re reading something completely unique and new.
Our protagonist Leisl (Elisabeth) is a young girl in historical Germany who lives with her family in a small village inn. Leisl is basically the caretaker of her two siblings, virtuoso Josef and romantic Kathe as her mother looks after their inn and her father drinks away the family’s finances. Another member of the household is her grandmother, Constantine who is a big believer in the old tales surrounding their lands of Goblins and fairies that she passes on to both Leisl and Josef. Leisl’s belier only goes so far however and this lands her in trouble when she forgets to be careful of her choices and makes a mistake concerning her sister. One day in a cat and mouse game with a creature known only as the Goblin King, her sister Kathe is kidnapped to be his bride and Leisl is forced to go the the Underground – the world of the goblins, to get her back. However Leisl realises she recognises the Goblin King from her childhood and is forced to relive her past and expose her deepest secrets in order to find a way to recover her sister and return her to the world above.
Honestly this book is so incredibly beautiful and dark that you can’t help but be drawn into it’s seductive story. Leisl such an interesting and multi faceted character that I think a lot of people will be able to see themselves in as she struggles with the choices she is forced to make. I also read on the author’s twitter that the sequel will explore her bipolar disorder that is hinted in the first book which I’m really intrigued and hopeful for as that would be amazing. She’s an incredibly strong woman and her relationship with the Goblin King whilst extremely dark is utterly addictive. I just loved this book so much and I can’t wait for more people to read it. I’m also counting down the days to the sequel in 2018 which I will definitely be pre-ordering ASAP. I highly recommend picking this book up and a huge thanks to Titan Books for the review copy.
Thanks for reading! P.S This is basically my February Wrap Up as it’s the only book I read that month. 🙂