I’m always somewhat impressed by Laini Taylor’s choice in character names. They’re highly unusual and, yet, she makes them work. I thought these three short stories were well written, but nothing to get too excited about. I will admit, it’s fun to see someone create their own fairy tales :). Ever since I stumbled across Christina Rossetti’s poetry a few years back I’ve been entranced by her writing style. Despite my admiration for Rossetti, I wasn’t a big fan of Taylor’s interpretation of the Goblin Market
. Although I suppose she left readers with a good lesson: don’t covet because it can easily consume you. I definitely think this is a prevalent problem in modern society.
The second story was interesting, but I didn’t like the nickname for the old lady (you know what I mean if you’ve read it). I thought it was a bit crass and didn’t add any value to the story. Other than this issue, I thought the story was well-written. I enjoyed reading about the love between Annamique and James. The ending was quite pleasing as well.
The third story was quite different from the other two and contained some beautiful imagery. I thought parts of it were reminiscent of “Daughter of Smoke and Bone,” but these similarities were subtle. At times, I thought the Druj Queen had some similarities with the Snow Queen from Hans Christian Anderson’s classic fairytale. The casual cruelty of the Druj was brilliantly depicted. There were times when I was left shivering at their callous nature. Humans were nothing more than playthings to them. In a way I suppose they’re quite similar to vampires, but much more creatively imagined. I personally didn't like the fact that the Druj were able to possess babies when they were still in their mothers' womb and steal a bit of their soul. Creepy.
Overall, I thought these short stories were beautifully crafted with stunning imagery.