(The Woodcutter, by Kate Danley)
Fear ye not, “The Woodcutter” is not a thinly plotted “romance”/ erotica as one might think, were they in the mood to misinterpret titles.
But oh, I assure you, ‘The Woodcutter’ is everything honorable, chivalrous, and good.
Rating: 8/10 – and a solid 8. I’ve had time to reflect on this one and it definitely holds.
Basic Summary: The Woodcutter, a semi-solitary figure who lives deep in the Wood, is the central thread in a swirl of fairy tales. Many are familiar to you. They’re familiar to the Woodcutter, as well, and that’s why he’s scared: The stories are changing. So the Woodcutter sets off on a quest, consulting with the faerie, traveling through a house that never stays in the same place, conversing with river gods, growing worried and more fearful by the day as he encounters princesses and princesses, lost and off the course of their stories.
My thoughts: This story is gorgeously done. Written with definite style. The story reads as a fairy tale, in the most warm, rich, and golden way. It feels the way your Disney-fied fairly tale heart wants a fairy tale to feel and sound. Don’t get me wrong, there is darkness, and grimness, but nothing too Bros. Grimm (no people willingly cutting off their toes, etc. that I recall). I took a couple days to read this one, it just felt nice. There were moments when you wanted to stop and savor the tale. I’ve given other stories 8.0s+, but many of those had the sort of charm and addictive quality that doesn’t allow for leisurely enjoyment. This story is quality storytelling and quality plot. Familiar enough, but different enough to fascinate and enthrall.
The Wrap-Up: This story was a delight, and one of the first non YA (and really, non-dystopian if we’re being honest) books I’ve read in a while. It’s definitely worth checking out, and if you aren’t averse to reading on your computer/phone/tablet, you can snag the Kindle edition for $3.99 from Amazon.
And, work/energy allowing, I’ll have a review of J.K. Rowling’s new release The Cuckoo’s Calling in the next week or few. Shh!