GIRLS MADE OF SNOW AND GLASS
REPRESENTATION: f/f Relationship
GENRES/ SUBJECTS: YA, Fairy Tale Retelling – Snow White
At sixteen, Mina’s mother is dead, her magician father is vicious, and her silent heart has never beat with love for anyone—has never beat at all, in fact, but she’d always thought that fact normal. She never guessed that her father cut out her heart and replaced it with one of glass. When she moves to Whitespring Castle and sees its king for the first time, Mina forms a plan: win the king’s heart with her beauty, become queen, and finally know love. The only catch is that she’ll have to become a stepmother.
Fifteen-year-old Lynet looks just like her late mother, and one day she discovers why: a magician created her out of snow in the dead queen’s image, at her father’s order. But despite being the dead queen made flesh, Lynet would rather be like her fierce and regal stepmother, Mina. She gets her wish when her father makes Lynet queen of the southern territories, displacing Mina. Now Mina is starting to look at Lynet with something like hatred, and Lynet must decide what to do—and who to be—to win back the only mother she’s ever known…or else defeat her once and for all.
Entwining the stories of both Lynet and Mina in the past and present, Girls Made of Snow and Glass traces the relationship of two young women doomed to be rivals from the start. Only one can win all, while the other must lose everything—unless both can find a way to reshape themselves and their story.
Girls Made of Snow and Glass is a beautiful, dark Snow White retelling.
There is an f/f relationship (which is what actually drew me to the book) but it’s not really the focus of the story. And (strangely) I’m completely okay with that.
Instead, the relationship we focus on is the complex stepmother-daughter bond between Mina and Lynet (the Evil Queen and Snow White) and I lived for it. There’s also an interesting look at motherhood in general and at the different relationships between fathers and daughters.
Girls Made of Snow and Glass is definitely a character-led story. The plot is quite slow-moving, but since the story is a retelling I didn’t mind. I felt it just gave the characters more room to shine. But, if you like things to move quickly or are expecting big action scenes, it might now be the best fit for you. This is a great book for anyone who enjoys morally-grey characters, characters who make mistakes and poor decisions, or anti-hero/ villain origin stories.
The story alternates POVs between the two leads and for a good part of the novel, between present-day and twenty years previous. Each voice was completely distinct and each character had a completely developed personality. I never got the two viewpoints remotely confused. On top of that, each of the women grew unbelievably over the course of the story. The characters were absolutely wonderful and flawed. In the beginning, Mina was my favourite, but Lynet really grew on me and I ended up loving them both. I loved that both — all three actually, the love interest (Nadia) doesn’t get a lot of page time, but she’s complex and impressive in the scenes she gets — were completely bad-ass in their own ways without falling into either the StrongFemaleCharacter or the NotLikeOtherGirls tropes.
Girls Made of Snow and Glass is a deep, female-driven retelling that’s memorable (especially considering the ocean of Snow White stories) and an instant favourite of mine.