Thursday, June 16, 2011

Book Review | Wildwood Dancing By Juliet Marillier

This book is officially my favorite retelling of The Twelve Dancing Princesses.  It was the fantastic cover art that first caught my eye at the library, but the story was just as sumptuous.
First of all, Juliet Marillier is fantastic with detail.  Everything was described lusciously--there is no other word for it--to the point that I really felt like I was there in the story with Jenna and her sisters dancing in the meadow along side the rest of the fairy folk. 
Another thing I loved about this book, is that Marillier incorporated other tales into the plot twists of the novel, such as The Frog Prince, a bit of Romeo and Juliet's forbidden love, and of course, the famous Transylvainian myths surrounding The Night People--or vampires. 

The tale takes place in Transylvania, so it's rich with that country's folklore. Being as fascinated with myths and legends as I am, this element was particularly fun for me.  I believe Marillier even spent a bit of time in Transylvania doing research in their old libraries. Totally jealous am I!

All in all, Wildwood Dancing is beautifully written providing readers of all ages with a delightful adventure and an immersion into a culture that was once both superstitious and mysteriously dangerous.  I was so pulled in by the intriguing, unpredictable plot twists and Marillier's talent for detail, that I read it in one night. 
Have any of you read this book?  I'd love to hear what you thought about it.



  1. I read and fell in love with this book. One of the few that I've thought good enough to re-read. "The Twelve Dancing Princesses" is my favorite fairytale, and I had felt bad that there wasn't a story about it. But this book is a beautiful retelling of this wonderful story and the characters are my favorite!

    P.S The sequel "Cybelles Curse" is also very good!
    (I'm having problems with posting so I'm anonymous tell I figure it out)

  2. Oh! I'm so glad "Cybele's Secret" is good too. I haven't had time to read that one yet, but I love middle eastern mythology as well.

  3. Oops...It's been a while since I've read it. I knew I should have looked it up to verify. Thanks for catching it! =) Cybele's Secret doesn't clearly follow any fairy tales that I am familiar with. But I could tell it follows some of the fairytales of the area it takes place in. A truly touching story. I will admit that I cried! It is definitely worth reading!


    Owners don't knock

  4. you have given me so many books to read! i had better get started soon