As this book began, I thought I would adore it. I really liked the tone, which was whimsical while still paying proper deference to the many fairy tale tropes woven throughout the story. This is definitely the most mashed-up fairy tale mash-up I’ve ever read, and while I thought that would make it delightful, it’s actually what contributed to my losing some patience with it by the time I hit the halfway point. There are many fairy tale references, but as a fan of more traditional retellings, I felt a little frustrated when the threads were never fully followed through, and by the end it started to feel like a jumbled dream rather than a cohesive story — something along the lines of Alice in Wonderland, except more like Alice in FairyTale Land. The frequent head-hopping also did not help matters at all. Because of all this, there were plot threads from the main storyline that I totally lost in the shuffle, especially those relating to Sunday’s “lost/dead” brother Jack and Rumbold’s years of “madness.”
Still, when this book was good, it was REALLY good, totally sweeping me away into a land that was, well, enchanted. So despite some of my frustrations, I still hope to read the others in the series — maybe I can even dare to hope for a more tightly reined-in focus!