Those are the visions of greatest value, but also greatest danger, for they are the inescapable horrors of your own making. You cannot run away from yourself.
The Reflections of Queen Snow White
By David Meredith
The queen has been in a moribund state of hopeless depression for over a year with no end in sight. It is only when, in a fit of bitter despair, she seeks solitude in the vastness of her own sprawling castle and climbs a long disused and forgotten tower stair that she comes face to face with herself in the very same magic mirror used by her stepmother of old.
I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review.
Fairy tale retellings are all the rage these days. Heck, these years. Some have accomplished their goal better than others, and I’m happy to report that The Reflections of Queen Snow White is in that company.
The present time of the story is in the days leading up to the wedding of Snow White’s daughter and only child, Raven. The titular queen has recently experienced the death of her husband, not to mention the death of so many of her friends. She is depressed, despondent, and struggling to connect with the daughter that needs her.
The story that follows is one of self-discovery. Snow White, seeking solitude, finds herself in the abandoned chambers of the step mother who abused her all of those years ago. And in those rooms she finds the magic mirror, and in the mirror she sees the past- the girl she once was and the queen she has become.
The flashbacks add to the familiar Snow White narrative by either retelling components of the original story, or by expanding on what happens in the days after her triumph. She is a young bride, a new leader, a wife hoping to be a mother. Through these visions she begins to understand herself more, and gains the confidence and clarity to continue on with her life. It is an emotional work that demonstrates how being royalty is not always a recipe for happiness. Additionally, the world that Meredith constructs around Snow White makes her situation seem more grounded in real life than fairy tale- courtiers scheme, mundane petitions must be reviewed, and questions of succession and legitimacy are addressed. With a few careful edits the story would read more as historical fiction rather than fantasy. I appreciated the difference.
Should You Read This?
If you consider yourself to be a fan of the fairy tale genre, I would highly recommend this book. It takes a very interesting spin on a well-known tale and moves through Snow White’s emotional journey with pain, power and love.
Summary from Goodreads