One sister must save the other from a goblin prince in this rich, spooky, and delightfully dark fantasy!
Lizzie and Minka are sisters, but they’re nothing alike: Minka is outgoing and cheerful, while Lizzie is shy and sensitive. Nothing much ever happens in their sleepy village—there are fields to tend, clothes to mend, and weekly trips to the market, predictable as the turning of the seasons. Lizzie likes it that way. It’s safe. It’s comfortable. She hopes nothing will ever change.
But one day, Minka meets a boy.
A boy who gives her a plum to eat.
He is charming. He is handsome. He tells her that she’s special. He tells her no one understands her like he does—not her parents, not her friends, not even Lizzie. He tells her she should come away with him, into the darkness, into the forest. . . .
Minka has been bewitched and ensnared by a zdusze—a goblin. His plum was poison, his words are poison, and strange things begin to happen. Trees bleed, winds howl, a terrible sickness descends on Minka, and deep in the woods, in a place beyond sunshine, beyond reality, a wedding table has been laid. . . .
To save her sister, Lizzie will have to find courage she never knew she had—courage to confront the impossible—and enter into a world of dreams, danger, and death.
Rich world-building inspired by both Polish folklore and the poetry of Christina Rossetti combines with a tender sister story in this thrilling novel from Diane Zahler.
An epic, boundary-pushing tale of five young women rebelling against an era that relies on their submission, from the acclaimed author of Etta and Otto and Russell and James.
During the golden age of the Roman Empire, five girls enjoy a modest childhood in their small Portuguese village. They race each other through lemon orchards and pick fresh fruit for the commander who overlooks his people from a large house on the hill. Though the girls are all raised by different families, there is one thing they know without a doubt: they are sisters.
What they don’t know is that their simple existence is about to be irrevocably changed. When soldiers abduct them from their village and bring them to the commander, the sisters are suddenly forced to confront long-buried secrets that reveal their lives to be anything but ordinary. Burgeoning on womanhood just as the Empire begins to show signs of crumbling around them, they soon find themselves at the centre of a deadly standoff and must part ways to fight their own battles in order to survive.
One of Emma Hooper’s most compelling novels yet, We Should Not Be Afraid of the Sky is bursting at the seams with abstract miracles, devastating tenderness, hope, desire, and treachery—with life and death in all their glory. Demonstrating both the force and fragility of human nature, Hooper urges us to consider how we’ll each face our own final hour, to examine what the end really means: is it something to fear, or is it a daring leap into the blaze of a new beginning?