Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Sisters vs. the Wolves

Little Red Riding Hood has to be one of the most iconic fairy tale characters we know. In Sisters Red, Jackson Pearce explores Red from a different perspective. And if you like fairy tales, you are going to want to check this one out!

Scarlett saw her grandmother devoured by a Fenris (werewolf doesn't even come close to describing the terror they bring). At such a young age, she was able to kill the wolf and save her younger sister, but not before the wolf scarred her forever and took her eye. Now, a scarred shell of the carefree girl she used to be, Scarlett throws herself into hunting with everything she has. And beyond her sister Rosie and their childhood friend Silas, hunting pretty much is the only thing happening in her life. 

Rosie knows she owes Scarlett her life, and she intends to pay that debt. Even though she dreams of things beyond hunting like a life and boys, she knows she owes everything to Scarlett and would never leave her. But when Silas returns, he is more than the boy next door to her, and she is more than little Rosie to him. When the wolves begin to congregate and multiple packs arrive in Ellison, the three realize what they are after: a Potential. A wolf can only be made through a potential, so all packs have an invested interested in finding him before the moon phase is over. Scarlett, Silas, and Rosie head to Atlanta to research and hunt in bulk, but they learn far more than they ever expected, both about the wolves, and about themselves. 

I love retold fairy tales. Cinder was one of my all time favorites. This is a really fun new imagining of Little Red Riding Hood. I didn't think it was the same caliber or complexity of Cinder, but I legitimately thought it was an exciting and fun story! I liked having the two personalities between Rosie and Scarlett, but I really loved Silas. And when Silas fell for Rosie, it was so clear that Scarlett had just a hint of jealousy, as Silas was always the only man who ever really saw her scars... and more importantly, they didn't disgust him. Scarlett's connection to Silas was never romantic, but the idea of him with Rosie hurts more than she would have expected it to. It was interesting watching her struggle with the idea of being the third wheel to the only people who mattered to her.

But that is not how Rosie and Silas see Scarlett. There is no real love triangle here, just a really special and unique relationship between three people who would all die for one another. It was a beautiful touch to this long lived fairy tale, and I wanted more! I think this would be great for any middle reader. There is a smidge of violence, but it is all behind the curtain or "fade to black" kind of violence. I also think I could see a young adult who really loved fairy tales getting into this series. I am looking forward to the next Retelling!

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