{Review} FIRST FROST by Liz DeJesus

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FIRST FROST is available on nook and Kindle for $4.99.  
What a great deal!

O P E N I N G   H O O K:

BIANCA SIGHED IN DISMAY.  The vacuum cleaner was broken again.  It was a black and blue monstrosity.  When it did work properly, it pulled Bianca every which way whenever she turned it on.  Sometimes she wondered what her mother would say if she bought a saddle for the vacuum cleaner and just rode it around the museum.  But lately it was giving her problems.  This was the second time this month that it refused to work.  Bianca double-checked to make sure it was plugged into the socket properly, placed a new piece of duct tape on the cord, and then tried to turn it on once more...still nothing. 

"Stupid piece of crap," she muttered under her breath. "Oh God," she groaned as she picked up the heavy vacuum cleaner and put it back in the utility room.  She would have to tell her mother, Rose, about the broken machine after story time in the Princess Room.
(Page 5, US e-book edition)

If you love fairy tales as much as I do, when you finish reading FIRST FROST, you're going to be a little bit devastated.  This is the same sense of ugly-weeping that comes from realizing you will never have a library as beautiful as the one Beast gives Beauty.  It's tangible sadness.  Why?  The book's main character, Bianca, works in her mother's Museum of Magical and Rare Artifacts...which is a fancy way of saying fairy tale museum.  How amazing would it be to have a fairy tale museum in town?  And themed rooms such as the Princess Room, where weekly storytimes for children take place?  Going to the Narnia exhibit a few years ago was incredible, even though it wasn't "real," and I know I'd have the same feeling in a fairy tale museum.  It would be even cooler if, like in FIRST FROST, the artifacts in the museum were real.  From a red cape to a brick from a Little Pig's house to a sample of Rapunzel's hair, there are many dangerous items hiding in plain sight.

No one believes the items are real, of course, especially not Bianca.  It would be neat if they were, but she lives in the real world and knows better.  Only...Bianca doesn't know as much as she thinks she does.  Her mother has been hiding a deep, dangerous secret from her.  They're direct descendants of the first Frost, Snow White herself, and knee-deep in an ancient curse that has already stolen away Bianca's father.  When her mother is captured by an evil villain bent on destroying the family once and for all, Bianca must throw aside everything she's ever known, discover magic, and journey through a land she never believed could actually exist.

While FIRST FROST starts off a little slowly, I didn't mind because as I stated in my opening paragraph, I was in complete awe of the fabulous museum.  Once Bianca discovers the truth behind the museum and has her eyes opened, the story really gets rolling.  Bianca isn't in the journey alone, either.  She travels between worlds with her best friend Ming, and the girls come across a travelling Prince Ferdinand and his companion Terrance.  Proper males brought up never to leave a damsel in distress, they quickly accompany the girls on their journey.  Each character is uniquely developed, too.  They may not be deep characters, but they're a lot of fun to be around.  There's the pompous prince who isn't necessarily the dashing hero girls dream of.  Terrance has a mysterious, intriguing background that comes into play later on.  Ming is a true friend despite her fears.  And Bianca is a great example of a true hero: One who is brave in the face of danger despite the fact that she's terrified.  She loves her mother fiercely and will do anything to save her.  She grows so fast and becomes very powerful by the novel's end.  It was a pleasure to watch her blossom.  I enjoyed all of the nods to various fairy tales along the way and really appreciated the way Liz DeJesus turned ordinary fairy tale items into important objects that played a role in Bianca's journey.  I ultimately had a lot of fun reading this and would pick up another book by DeJesus in the future.
C O V E R   D E S I G N:

I wish the background image wasn't drowned out by everything lying on top of it.  I want to see more of the girl in the pretty dress, please.  I want it to pop out!  I do like the way the white used for the title and author were pulled from the white created from this effect of diluting the background, but I do wish the image stood out more, because it could be so striking.
O F F I C I A L   I N F O:

Author: Liz DeJesus
Release Date: June 22, 2012
Publisher: Musa Publishing
Received: For Review

Fairy tales aren’t real…yeah…that’s exactly what Bianca thought. She was wrong. 

For generations, the Frost family has run the Museum of Magical and Rare Artifacts, handing down guardianship from mother to daughter, always keeping their secrets to “family only.” 

Gathered within museum’s walls is a collection dedicated to the Grimm fairy tales and to the rare items the family has acquired: Cinderella’s glass slipper, Snow White’s poisoned apple, the evil queen’s magic mirror, Sleeping Beauty’s enchanted spinning wheel… 

Seventeen-year-old Bianca Frost wants none of it, dreaming instead of a career in art or photography or…well, anything except working in the family’s museum. She knows the items in the glass display cases are fakes because, of course, magic doesn’t really exist. 

She’s about to find out how wrong she is.


  1. This sounds like a fun read. I am definitely intrigued by the museum, as you were! Thanks for sharing your review, Bonnie; I hadn't heard of First Frost before!

  2. Never heard of it, but I'll have to look into it. You make a point of saying the main character grows and I'm totally a character girl. And the friendship is important. And it sounds like the girls do the saving instead of the guys so there's another plus! And I love nods to several fairy tales. I love to see how authors do that. No one does it the same. I'll put this one on my TBR list. Thanks for the review!



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