*I received a copy of this book from Random House as part of the Ambuzzadors program.*
The Bluebeard fairy tale retold. . . . When seventeen-year-old Sophia Petheram’s beloved father dies, she receives an unexpected letter. An invitation—on fine ivory paper, in bold black handwriting—from the mysterious Monsieur Bernard de Cressac, her godfather. With no money and fewer options, Sophie accepts, leaving her humble childhood home for the astonishingly lavish Wyndriven Abbey, in the heart of Mississippi. Sophie has always longed for a comfortable life, and she finds herself both attracted to and shocked by the charm and easy manners of her overgenerous guardian. But as she begins to piece together the mystery of his past, it’s as if, thread by thread, a silken net is tightening around her. And as she gathers stories and catches whispers of his former wives—all with hair as red as her own—in the forgotten corners of the abbey, Sophie knows she’s trapped in the passion and danger of de Cressac’s intoxicating world.
My Review: I have a hard time finding fairytale retellings that I enjoy, but I'm excited to say that I did really enjoy this one. Snow White, Cinderella... there are tons of those, but this is the first Bluebeard retelling that I've come across, and so far it's my favorite! This book had a Gothic sort of feel to it, as well as the fairytale aspect and a historical aspect. That sounds very complex the way I'm explaining it, but it was done really well! The gothic feel definitely comes from the Abbey (which I loved!). It was the perfect setting for a novel like this. It was beautiful and curious and just a bit odd for being in the middle of Mississippi.
Sophie was a pretty awesome main character. She wasn't perfect through out the novel, but she was smart and quick on her feet. Monsieur Bernard... *shudder*
I love the way all the aspects of the Bluebeard fairytale were incorporated. They were pretty obviously there, but not so overdone that it wasn't a good story anymore. And it wasn't the only focus of the story, which was really awesome. There are other things going on in the story completely unrelated to the fairytale but very relevant to what's going on in the time period.
This book is an awesome pick for all you fairytale junkies, and it's a good one for fans of Gothic novels and historical fiction. And you don't have to like all of those things! I only like 2/3 generally, but I really enjoyed reading this book, and I'm super excited that I got to be on the Ambuzzadors' team for it.
Thanks for reading!