A Spindle Splintered: Alix E. Harrow *Review*

A paperback copy of A Spindle Splintered by Alix E. Harrow is held up in a Caucasian female's left hand, in front of a white bookshelf, filled with polymer clay creatures and books.

Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, YA Fantasy | Release Date: 5 October 2021 | Series: Fractured Fables | Series Book: #1 | Pages: 126 | Publisher: Tor Books | Review

“We dying girls, we sorry girls, gallows-bound.

Alix E. Harrow


A Spindle Splintered by Alix E. Harrow is an incredibly poignant retelling of Sleeping Beauty, fracturing the fairytale as we know it and reimagining it into something new. Featuring Arthur Rackham’s original illustrations, this beautiful novella easily mesmerises the reader!

Within this YA fantasy, Zinnia is obsessed with the tale of Sleeping Beauty. Why? Because she is dying. And if Sleeping Beauty can come back from the brink of death or sleep, why can’t she? When Zinnia turns 21, it seems like her time is up. No one else with this condition has ever lived past this age. At the birthday party her best friend Charm planned for her, Zinnia pricks her finger on the antique spinning wheel. Now suddenly thrust into a different world, a different story, this is not something anyone could’ve predicted. Can Zinnia save a Sleeping Beauty from her fate? Is there a way to break Zinnia’s own ‘curse’? A new tale is about to be spun…

A paperback copy of A Spindle Splintered by Alix E. Harrow is on a white bookshelf, in front of books by Lexi Ryan, Nattie Kate Mason and Rae Else. A stone polymer clay dragon with mushrooms and ladybugs by Prismatic Brush is to the right of the book.
A Spindle Splintered is an exciting reimagining of Sleeping Beauty…
Completely enchanting the beautiful stone dragon from Prismatic Brush!

Happiness Boost:

Fairytale retellings are such a happiness boost for me, particularly when they’re done this well! Within A Spindle Splintered, Zinnia gives us an overview of Sleeping Beauty’s history, in all of her facets. A perfect set up for the twists and turns this gem of a story gives us! Without wanting to give any spoilers away, I will say there are plot twists in this retelling which are completely new to me! And how could anyone hate that?!

Alix gives us a dying girl as the heroine. There’s no shying away from it, and I actually think that it really added to my enjoyment of this novella. I’m not oddly macabre, I promise! But Zinnia is *more* than just her death sentence, and as a chronically ill person, this really resonates with me. Nobody wants to be reduced to a statistic, a label. Zinnia gives us hope, that we are more than just these definitions. And I am all for that.

You are accustomed to thinking of fairy tales as make-believe… But they have only ever been mirrors.” Cautionary tales abound amongst the stories of faerie. And I love diving deep into the bones of a tale, examining the reasons for its existence. Sometimes a story is just a story. But fairytales? They have always given us something *extra*. Just like learning from history can save us from repeating awful things, fairytales give us a glimpse of good and evil at their extremes. A Spindle Splintered does this exceptionally well, and I’ve loved every minute of it!


No downside! Are you kidding? How could anyone hate a story of fairytales, courage and defiance?

Final Thoughts:

Alix E. Harrow’s A Spindle Splintered is a wonderful addition to the retellings of Sleeping Beauty. Giving us a tale of a dying girl and a trapped Princess, this YA fantasy is an exceptional adventure, full of hope and a defiance of death sentences and curses. I really encourage everyone to give this story a try, because it’s amazing. Enjoyed what you’ve read of my review? Grab a copy of A Spindle Splintered via the links below! Happy reading, glitterbugs!

You can order A Spindle Splintered via these links:

Amazon | Booktopia | Fishpond

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