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Check out today's interview with Kate Danley!
The WOODCUTTER is available on Kindle for $3.99,
as well as in paperback form at Amazon, B&N, etc.
What a great deal!
I'm about to make the book sound bad with the summary, and it truly isn't. It's just really hard to reveal anything because there are so many spoilers if I do. Essentially...
The Woodcutter is an enigmatic figure we don't know much about, though as the story develops and evolves, we learn so much more about him and his destiny. As the book begins, the Woodcutter has discovered another mysterious death (our beloved Cinderella, no less!), leading him to begin the hunt for the corrupted soul taking innocent lives in his domain. He goes to the River God and receives three magical blades to aid him on his quest, finds himself caught up in a fairy tale drug ring of citizens smuggling pixie dust, and discovers the truth behind the disturbing murders. He also crosses paths with several endangered fairy tale characters along the way.
I liked seeing the world through the eyes of the Woodcutter. He has such a unique destiny, and I enjoyed piecing things together as I read. Danley has a way of twisting things up and surprising readers. There's something very satisfactory about this book, but also something that resonates emotionally at its core. It does take a while to get into the rhythm of the text. Danley writes brief chapters in a way that reminds me of James Patterson. I personally hate short chapters. I understand why people love them and think they're great for reluctant readers or people with short attention spans, but personally, I detest them. At the same time, it lends an immediacy as things change and move on as the story progresses. The best part, to me, is the way Danley phrases her sentences. Her word choice can be quite lovely and unique, and I wanted to savor so many things I came across as I read.
The story was a mix of so many things, original fantasy with a huge heaping of lore. And not just fairy tale lore, either. Baba Yaga and Odin make an appearance, for example, and even elements that are new have a very "lore-esque" vibe to them. There are characters we see in so many tales, yet they serve a new role, such as grandmothers living in the woods. They operate the way they do in the tales, and yet differently at the same time. The world-building is layered and I already want to re-read this and discover sneaky additions I missed the first time around. The tale is definitely darker than many of today's fairy tale novels, as can be determined just by looking at the summary, but so are the original tales. The mystery and intrigue kept me guessing, and I'm already anxious to read more from Danley in the future if she continues to write books of this caliber. If you're looking for something in the genre that's different, THE WOODCUTTER is well worth a second-glance.