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Stitching Snow by R. C. Lewis eARC {3 Stars}

Stitching Snow by R. C. Lewis is a futuristic sci-fi retelling of Snow White and a fairly fun tale of adventure and love. I had originally worried it would be too similar to Cress based on Stitching Snow’s description, however I’m happy to report that those fears were completely unfounded! While the combination of fairytale elements with sci-fi technology was often cute, Stitching Snow ended up having some pretty big pacing and character dynamics problems that left me finding it only mildly enjoyable. It was a fun adventure while it lasted though!

Note: I received an advanced copy of Stitching Snow from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.

Stitching Snow by R. C. Lewis eARC {3 Stars}

Stitching Snow by R. C. Lewis
Published by Disney Hyperion on Oct. 14th, 2014
Genres: Fairytale Retelling, Sci-fi, YA
Page Length: 338 pages
How I got my copy: NetGalley
Amazon - IndieBound - Book Depository - Goodreads
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Princess Snow is missing.

Her home planet is filled with violence and corruption at the hands of King Matthias and his wife as they attempt to punish her captors. The king will stop at nothing to get his beloved daughter back—but that’s assuming she wants to return at all.

Essie has grown used to being cold. Temperatures on the planet Thanda are always sub-zero, and she fills her days with coding and repairs for the seven loyal drones that run the local mines.

When a mysterious young man named Dane crash-lands near her home, Essie agrees to help the pilot repair his ship. But soon she realizes that Dane’s arrival was far from accidental, and she’s pulled into the heart of a war she’s risked everything to avoid. With the galaxy’s future—and her own—in jeopardy, Essie must choose who to trust in a fiery fight for survival.

3 Stars

Strengths:

  • There are some really adorable elements of Stitching Snow that bring in the Snow White fairytale. It took me a moment to realize that her seven droids were the seven dwarves, but once I did I was highly entertained ;-). They have names reminiscent but different from the Disney version of the fairytale, my favorite of which is Cusser because he apparently picked up swearing from his creator, ha.
  • Essie is everything I love in a heroine in that she is a scrapper and very much knows how to hold her own in a fight (and doesn’t shy away from them!) but is also a complete geek and codes the droids’ programs herself. Basically I kind of wish I could be her apart from the whole barely making by on a mining planet thing >.>.
  • The galaxy of Stitching Snow is pretty interesting and again weaves in the elements of the fairytale into some unique ideas. Essie has been living on a mining planet, the planets of the galaxy are controlled from a central capital planet, and the rebels/exiles live on a third planet. We get to see a fair bit of the galaxy too which is always fun in a sci-fi with space travel!
  • The writing of Stitching Snow very much had moments of beauty. I can’t say it was always, but there were several times that I found myself smiling at a turn of phrase that was particularly lovely to read.
  • By the end of Stitching Snow I was pleased with the sweet romance that had developed. It’s not like it was any big surprise, but I was happy for those crazy kids ;-).

Weaknesses:

  • For an otherwise pretty fun and light young adult, Stitching Snow has an inappropriately dark element of abuse. When it is first hinted that Essie’s father sexually abused her, I was sure I was misinterpreting the hints because it just doesn’t fit the tone at all. However, it becomes clear that that is what was being hinted at and I found myself just really uncomfortable and confused as to why that was thrown in.
  • Despite being happy with where the romance eventually goes, the interactions leading up to that ending were ridiculously lacking in sizzle. Essie just feels exceedingly flat for most of Stitching Snow and her dialogue with Dane that is clearly supposed to make us ship them falls equally flat most of the time.
  • Stitching Snow started off pretty strong and I was happy I had picked it up. However, by the middle I was really feeling the pacing problems I had feared. There is a lot of flying and talking and trying to be clever.
  • While the Snow White elements were cute when they appeared, the sci-fi setting and the fairytale elements felt rather forced together. There is a convenient mention of how Snow White’s father loves archaic things so that the capital planet mostly resembles a fairytale setting with swords and court life, etc. It felt like these were two separate ideas that were cool on their own but didn’t really belong together.

Summary:

Stitching Snow started off with promise but ended up not quite living up to my hopes unfortunately. It was still a fun enough read, but the stiff character interactions and lack of pacing made me feel rather accomplished by the time I was done. If you really love the idea of Snow White + sci-fi, then go for it and you’ll probably enjoy yourself. If, however, you’re like me and can really take it or leave it, Stitching Snow is probably not for you.

Anya from On Starships and Dragonwings

Have you read this one? What did you think? Are you excited for it if you haven’t gotten to it yet?
– Anya

 

 Stitching Snow by R. C. Lewis

© 2015, Anya. All rights reserved.

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Comments

  1. I probably won’t read this because I have far too many other books to read at the moment (and it didn’t seem like you liked it much anyway) but I gotta say that Cusser the droid sounds delightful! Sorry to hear about the abuse thing though. I hate it when authors throw in violence without reason.
    Miriam @ Inky Realms recently posted…Fantasy Review: Foxglove Summer by Ben AaronovitchMy Profile

  2. I LOVED this one. I think I am the black sheep. I give this one 5 stars, and then DNFed Snow Like Ashes. THis one just worked for me, and I really liked the little drilling droids. They made the story for me.
    Lyn Kaye recently posted…Book Review: The Fiery HeartMy Profile

  3. Hmm…I still like the idea of fairy tales + sci-fi, and I might grab this at the library sometime, but it sounds like the pacing and character development could be a problem. Great review! :)
    Kel @ Booked til Tuesday recently posted…The Mark of the Dragonfly by Jaleigh Johnson (3 stars)My Profile

    • If that combination floats your boat then definitely give it a try! Just don’t blame me if you want to strangle the romance ;-)

  4. Did somebody say re-tellings? I AM SO THERE! :D I know what you mean by the blurb reminding you of The Lunar Chronicles, but I’m so glad that it was different. :) Going to pick this one up if I see it! Great review!
    Ana @ Read Me Away recently posted…Review 138: The Geography of You and Me (Jennifer E. Smith)My Profile

  5. Lunar Chronicles has set the bar high for sci fi retellings I think! It’ll be interesting how Winter does the Snow White retelling.

    I’ve wanted to try Stitching Snow since I first heard about it but I’m a bit unsure. The abuse element does sound like a strange thing to throw into the plot. It sucks that the romance isn’t developed well because those interactions leading up to the big romantic finale at the end are what determine how much I’ll ship something :/ I am still really interested in the drones though! And Essie sounds like a heroine I’ll like so maybe I will still give this a try one day.
    Bec @ Readers in Wonderland recently posted…Review: Heart of the Dragon’s Realm by Karalynn LeeMy Profile

    • Right?? Gah WINTER!!! *tries to breathe calmly* ahem….

      Yeah, I can’t see you shipping this much, there just isn’t that spark ya know? Might borrow it from the library and give it a shot. The beginning is fun for sure.

  6. I didn’t even realize this was on the sci fi side! I’m still hoping to read it but don’t know when I’ll get to it though.
    Tabitha (Not Yet Read) recently posted…Review: Darkwalker by E.L. TettensorMy Profile

  7. Too bad! I thought the premise of this book had a lot of potential, but I think the problems with it are enough to keep me from picking up something that’s already outside of my typical genres.
    Katie @ Doing Dewey recently posted…5 Reasons Magical Realism is AwesomeMy Profile

    • Yeah, I wouldn’t say this one is worth stretching outside your comfort zone for. Cinder definitely is a better example!

  8. Ah I didn’t read Stitching Snow at all. But I’m glad you liked it! I don’t see myself picking this up anytime soon, but I really like how the dwarves are droids haha!
    Valerie recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday #40My Profile

    • Hehe, yeah, it was a nice couple of days read at least ;-). The droids were so cute! I wish there had been more of them!

  9. I’ve read some books that have weird violence come out of nowhere too, and it’s very jarring. I don’t have a problem with the dark stuff as long as it makes sense with the rest of the story.
    Tammy @ Books, Bones & Buffy recently posted…Tammy’s Top Twelve Genre Books by Women Authors for 2015My Profile

    • Completely agreed. If it is a dark book and the character is broken because of bad things and she grows and overcomes, great. But this was just there and never addressed D:

  10. THANK YOU. I thought I was the only one who was so put off by that part with her dad. And it was never even addressed – it was like a thing that happened to increase sympathy and that’s it. There just wasn’t enough resolution to make it a GOOD or even necessary plot point.

    I actually agree with all your pros and cons, but the cons were worse for me and I think I ended up giving it two stars… I prefer Melissa Meyer’s sci-fi retellings for sure ;)
    Kayla @ The Thousand Lives recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday: Books I’d read if I had a week off lifeMy Profile

  11. I’ve heard mixed things about this book, so I was on the fence. I wanted to read it, because fun is one thing I look for in a book and those droids sound too cute, but I don’t like the whole abuse thing. Thanks for the warning about that.

    • The droids are pretty darn cute! You could almost skip over the paragraphs eluding do the abuse and pretend it isn’t there? >.>

  12. I didn’t read Stiching Snow, but it’s on my list of books I must read in 2015 (because I love sf fairy tale retellings). I hope pacing and character dynamics problems won’t bother me as much as they did you.
    Dragana recently posted…Top Ten Signs That You Love Some BookMy Profile

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