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The Way Past Winter

The Way Past Winter

RRP: £99
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Regalo di un Natale passato, questo piccolo libricino si è rivelato il compagno giusto per passare un freddo pomeriggio d’inverno. Essendo pensato per un target giovane, il testo è molto facile da comprendere per pace del mio cervello fuori allenamento, motivo per cui ve lo consiglio anche se non siete molto esperti in inglese. Non posso certo dare un giudizio sulla narrazione data la mia ignoranza linguistica, ma nel complesso lo stile dell’autrice mi è parso fluido e intrigante. But the plot, characters and places are too vaguely sketched for that to come off. Millwood Hargrave's styling of those is more suitable for a mainstream fantasy adventure, and might have served a different story well. But the simple folkloric tale she has given them is a bad fit. The fairy-tale logic and world-building sit uncomfortably with the modern-fiction-shaped characters and relationships. We really enjoyed the characters, the storyline and the descriptions. There were some lovely dog characters in this one and some very inventive elements such as the journey to Thule and the breathe-skeins that helped them cross through an underwater current. However, I just feel that the world building and plot isn't really explored to its full extent here. Folktales and culture are talked about briefly, more as a plot device than anything else, but never really examined or discussed in depth. I wanted to more about the Bear, how he came to be and what his true intentions might have once been before he steps down this dark path of revenge and rage.

This middle grade exudes the very essence of winter. From snowy landscapes, to ice covered forests and dog pulled sleighs, the descriptions are wonderful. You can almost feel the cold, and wrapping up warm in furs along with Mila and her sisters. This relationship is also quite heartwarming in itself. All the siblings, although not perfect, share a special bond. It's well written, as I would expect from Millwood-Hargrave, who seems to have this ability to create intricate and carefully balanced relationships that are complicated yet deeply moving and more importantly, believable. Kiran Millwood Hargrave was born in Surrey in 1990, and her earliest ambition was to be a cat, closely followed by a cat-owner or the first woman on Mars. She has achieved only one of these things, but discovered that being a writer lets you imagine whatever you want.As the book description says, three sisters live with their brother until a stranger turns up. Following the events that happen that night, a journey is undertaken to save a sibling. Es gab eine Sache, die mich gestört hat. Der Klappentext sagt aus, dass die Hauptfigur Mila mit ihren beiden Schwestern unterwegs ist, was aber nur insoweit stimmt, als dass sie zu Beginn (eigentlich noch vor der eigentlichen Reise) zusammen unterwegs sind und dann auf der letzten Etappe nochmals. Dazwischen werden Mila und ihre kleine Schwester von einem (männlichen) jungen Zauberer begleitet. Das ist vollkommen in Ordnung, auch mochte ich den Zauberer und seine (Kräuterhexen-ähnliche) Fähigkeiten sehr, dennoch war es ein wenig enttäuschend, da es eben so klingt, als ob hier drei Mädchen bzw. zwei Mädchen und eine junge Frau unterwegs wären, die ohne männliche Hilfe auskommen. Vielleicht dient es auch einfach nur dazu, dass das Buch dadurch eher von männlichen Lesern angenommen wird. Nothing is vivid or richly imagined past a very well-drawn opening. The characters, settings, atmospheres and events are vague, leaving no real satisfaction to be found either as a bold folk tale or a nuanced fantasy novel.

Sadly this atmosphere is not sustained throughout the novel, nor evolved into any other particular feeling. The main character's emotional life, so carefully observed in the at-home section disappears amid the broad strokes of a simplistic plot as soon as the action gets moving.Everything Kiran writes is woven in the richest language and each sentence is a delight. But you also sense that with each book she puts a great piece of herself into the story too. This time I felt it in spades. Emotion resonates and pulses here whether it is from the threat of the stranger or the anger that the sisters feel as to what has happened to them. The plot and pace is pitch perfect too with just the right mix of reality and magic. Perhaps the book would be satisfying for younger children (in the 7-9 range) for whom simple fantasy plotting is more apt, but then the characters are too old and jaded, the opening too sophisticatedly drawn, and the occurence of death and violence too adult, for me to imagine anyone under the age of about twelve would be up for this. As every book featuring snowfall must be by law, this book has been compared to Nothern Lights by Philip Pullman but in truth it doesn't aim to be that kind of book - rather than the modern fantasy genre of Northern Lights, it aims for a more folkloric story; a grand, perhaps allergorical, grown-up fairy-tale. Mila lives with her siblings in their small cabin deep in the wintry forest. One night, mysterious strangers arrive near their village looking for shelter. The next morning, the men have gone but they have taken Mila's brother Oskar with them.

I really enjoy the writing of Kiran Millwood Hargrave and The Way Past Winter is no exception, it has all the ingredients of a beautiful, timeless fairytale, and is sure to enchant both adults and children alike. There were some parts that those reading aloud to young children might want to be aware of the boys who are captured are turned into a sort of living zombie, most of them feed the heart tree, but one is frozen in the ice so that the rescue sleigh cannot pass, the description of this boy being killed is quite graphic and though fine for a read aloud to a 16 year old I would have felt uncomfortable reading this to smaller children. The description of the boys being sacrificed for the tree is also quite horrific and might provide vivid nightmares to a younger child. Also when the reason for all this trouble is revealed we were left wondering why this person would cause all this trouble when they were someone who warned about such actions. Perpetual winter has haunted Mila's forest for years, leaving her siblings to fight for food and survival. So when a mysterious band of men turn up at their door, talking of treasure, Mila is suspicious. With the disappearance of her brother the next morning, Mila is convinced he has been taken. But can the help of Rune, the Mage outcast be enough to find him? Kiran Millwood Hargrave is a masterful storyteller and this spectacular new tale about siblings, bravery and not losing hope is likely to capture imaginations and whisk readers on a mesmerising pursuit through magical realms. A captivating read to warm hearts on cold, winter days.An exciting, beautiful and atmospheric tale which looks at family, love, loyalty and at putting others before oneself and one which, I have to admit, kept me captivated from beginning to end. Although I am much older than the targeted age range I soon found myself completely absorbed to the extent I felt I too was travelling on Mila's sleigh, shouting "Farash" and "Stuta" to Dusha and Danya are they flew across the snowy landscape pursued by hungry, slavering wolves and huge-taloned eagles intent on preventing Mila reaching her goal. We both agreed this would make an amazing film, the scenes described are a great opportunity for stunning visuals. It has been winter for five years, and Sanna, Mila and Pípa are left alone in their little house in the forest – with nothing but cabbages to eat – when their brother Oskar is lured away by the same evil force that took their father years ago and has been keeping spring from coming. Mila, the brave middle daughter, sets out on a quest to rescue Oskar and the village’s other lost boys and to find the way past winter. Clearly inspired by the Chronicles of Narnia and especially Katherine Arden’s Winternight trilogy, this middle grade novel is set in an evocative, if slightly vague, Russo-Finnish past and has more than a touch of the fairy tale about it. I enjoyed it well enough, but wouldn’t seek out anything else by the author.



  • Fruugo ID: 258392218-563234582
  • EAN: 764486781913
  • Sold by: Fruugo

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