Book Reviews · Reading

Review: The Way Past Winter by Kiran Millwood-Hargrave

40366591.jpgMila and her sisters live with their brother Oskar in a small forest cabin in the snow. One night, a fur-clad stranger arrives seeking shelter for himself and his men. But by the next morning, they’ve gone – taking Oskar with them. Fearful for his safety, Mila and her sisters set out to bring Oskar back – even it means going north, crossing frozen wild-lands to find a way past an eternal winter.

I have been sitting on this review for what feels like ages. I read this wonderful book in the balmy hot days of summer, and it made me long for blankets and steaming hot mugs of tea and all that winter goodness. It’s a book that I’ve been thinking about ever since. When I read THE WAY PAST WINTER, I said it was the best book I’d read so far in 2018. Well, months later, it still is.

My thoughts:

  • THE WAY PAST WINTER tells the story of three sisters and their search for their missing brother. Obviously though, that’s the most basic description that is no way representative of the sheer magic of this story. This book reads like a fairytale, but the adventure within is as imaginative and inventive as they come.
  • Kiran Millwood-Hargrave is a prose genius. There, I’ve said it. Anyone who’s read her previous books will know that every sentence is gorgeously quotable. This is her most beautiful writing yet–it’s so immersive and stirring. There were points in this story that I had to stop reading and just think about how beautiful the words were.
  • I remember reading THE LION, THE WITCH, AND THE WARDROBE as a kid and physically shivering at the description of the winter Narnia was under. Kiran has captured that same evocative description of winter in her book. Winter seems to permeate the pages.
  • I utterly adored the relationship between Mila and her siblings. The exploration of family bonds and love was done SO perfectly. I adored the way the sisters grew throughout the book.
  • I read this book in one sitting, the day I got it. It was un-put-down-able. There is just something about Kiran’s writing that draws you in and won’t let you go. I’m not sure if I have the right words to convey just how brilliant this book is. All I can say is that it was a triumph, Kiran Millwood-Hargrave is a treasure of kidlit, and I will be buying everything she ever writes in the future.
  • ALSO, the finished copies are GORGEOUS. The green with gold accents?! (If I could do the heart emoji on WordPress you bet I’d be doing it right now.

*A MASSIVE thanks to Chicken House Books for sending me a review copy*

What’s the best book you’ve read in 2018?

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