Myths of Mish by Katie Hamstead
Release Date: March 28, 2017
*ARC provided by author for an honest review – thanks so much, Katie!!*
If you don’t remember from a little bit ago, I had finally found it – the Sleeping Beauty retelling that I finalllllllllly loved. It was Princess of Tyrone by Katie Hamstead, and I’m in serious heart eyes still because despite my intense love of Sleeping Beauty, there has never been a fairytale retelling of her that has been good – until Princess of Tyrone came around. When I heard that Katie was going to be doing a second book, I jumped at the chance to return to this beautiful sci-fi fairytale world.
Once Upon a Time…
Hansel and Gretel Herrscher survived the witch in the woods, but the experience has made Hansel paranoid for the past ten years. He sees dark magic at every turn. When Gretel has a marriage arranged to a much older man, and Hansel discovers he’s about to be sent halfway across the galaxy, he knows something sinister is afoot.
Wilhelmine Nordon has plenty of experience with Hansel’s quirkier side. So when she catches him and Gretel running away in the middle of the night, she follows to keep them from getting killed. The siblings have never left the capital of Mish on their own, so they need a babysitter. Except when she’s discovered, Hansel gives her his usual cold shoulder, and Gretel secretly begs her to take them back.
The problem is, Hansel’s paranoia turns out to be well founded, and they’re all being hunted.
If you’ve been with me on this blog journey for a while, you know I have a weird relationship with sci-fi stories. For the most part, I don’t like them, but there is the occasional one that will somehow get my devoted attention. What Hamstead does in both of her novels is something so unique that a good deal of the time, I forget I’m actually reading something sci-fi and on another planet. She didn’t disappoint with this setting either. It had just another sci-fi to be different, but she creates a beautiful old fairytale setting that will take you back to another world and time. I love how she combines the two, and she wasted no time in doing that again.
I also loved Wilhelmine. She was such a strong heroine, and while she wasn’t part of the original fairytale, I was so glad that Hamstead added her in. There were a few times that she could be stronger, but for the most part, she kicked major butt. She was definitely my favorite character and I totally thought she rocked being our heroine.
The other characters were great as well. I loved how the Hansel and Gretel’s parents had a little different twist on them. They weren’t clearly evil as they were in the fairytale, and you kind of have to guess is Hansel reading things too far or are they really the bad guys? It was interesting to kind of have that mystery behind them when it was super obvious in the original story. And Gretel was another good character. She was dreamy and just like the little girl from the folk tale.
Hamstead also has such a nice writing style. Her pace is just right, and although this one rushed into things a bit faster than Princess of Tyrone, it was still very good.
There was one main issue that I had with the novel, and it was sadly Hansel. While I like a good hate to love relationship, for me, the hate dragged out a little too long for me and I began to just give 😛 faces at Hansel who needed to get his act together. I totally see the character arc Hamstead was going for and I think she did a good job with it by the end, but Hansel just got a little toooooo alpha for me at the beginning that it kind of colored him for the rest of the book for me.
Overall, this was a nice addition to her unique series. Hansel did make me do a lot of 😛 faces, but Hamstead’s other characters, storyline, writing, and world were as amazing as always. If you’re looking for a cool fairytale retelling that literally out of this world, these books are for you. Princess of Tyrone will forever be my Sleeping Beauty go-to, and while this book was knocked down a crown for me, Hamstead still created a wonderfully unique story. I’ve never been too fond of the Hansel and Gretel story, but Hamstead certainly took it on a unique spin.
4 crowns, and since Merida literally did find a witch in the woods (since there was no candy tho and thankfully no crazy oven), she’s coming for a visit today! And seriously, go check out Princess of Tyrone!!
Check it out:
What do you think? Have you read Princess of Tyrone yet? How do you feel about sci-fi fairytale retellings? Is Hansel and Gretel a favorite folk tale or meh? Let’s discuss in the comments below!