Thursday, September 29, 2016

Beware Sharp Objects - Spindle Review

TITLE: Spindle
AUTHOR: Shonna Slayton
PUBLISHER: Entangled Teen
PUBLISHING DATE: October 4, 2016

Set during the Industrial Revolution, Sleeping Beauty's happily ever after isn't the end of the story...

In a world where fairies lurk and curses linger, love can bleed like the prick of a finger.

Briar Rose knows her life will never be a fairy tale. She’s raising her siblings on her own, her wages at the spinning mill have been cut, and the boy she thought she had a future with has eyes for someone else. Most days it feels like her best friend, Henry Prince, is the only one in her corner…though with his endless flirty jokes, how can she ever take him seriously?

When a mysterious peddler offers her a “magic” spindle that could make her more money, sneaking it into the mill seems worth the risk. But then one by one, her fellow spinner girls come down with the mysterious sleeping sickness—and Briar’s not immune.

If Briar wants to save the girls—and herself—she’ll have to start believing in fairy tales…and in the power of a prince’s kiss.
MY THOUGHTS:  I have to be honest and admit that for about the first 100 pages or so of this book, I really considered DNF'ing this. And I guess that it's a good thing I rarely DNF because after that point, the book really picked up for me and turned into a pretty decent read (Although it is probably closer to 3.5/5 than a 4/5 strictly because it didn't pull me in right away). "Spindle" in not really a retelling, but instead, it takes place about 100 years after "Sleeping Beauty." 16 year old Briarly Rose (aka Briar) lost her parents years ago and is left to take care of her much younger siblings, Pansy, Jack and Benny. During the week, the children are left in the care of Nan while Briar lives in a boardinghouse and works in the town mill spinning threads. Nan has told Briar that when she turns 17, she must either be able to care for the children on her own or else place them in alternative care, which undoubtedly means splitting them up. One weekend, upon her return home, Briar discovers Nan is gone and her friend Fanny is now caring for the children. Briar is also feeling tremendous pressure to produce more at the mill and agrees to use a beautiful wooden spindle given to her by a weary peddler. This leads to an illness at the mill and Briar being caught up in the middle of something she doesn't understand and which has been hidden from her for ages.

Now that I'm trying to sum this book up, it becomes glaringly obvious that there was a lot of information to grasp in this book. In the beginning, I was pretty much confused as to what was going on and how everything tied together. Although as I mentioned, it eventually becomes clear and the story concludes quite nicely. One of the things I loved the most about this book was the characters themselves. Fanny and Ms. Olive, who owns the boardinghouse, were delightful to read about and Briar was very lucky to have both of them in her life. Also, Briar's dear friend Henry is very pertinent to the story and while there really isn't much a of love triangle in the book, there are two men vying for Briar's attention so be warned. Several of the girls in the house have a wonderful friendship developing and beneath the surface of the plot are some important statements on women's rights, equality and the suffrage movement.

I really don't know how Slayton was able to incorporate so much in a relatively short novel. Once I reached the halfway mark, I pretty much devoured the remainder of the book in one sitting. I wish there was more Henry in the book, and as a side note, I think a companion book about Henry and his adventures would be a fun and interesting read. If you like fairy tales and their retellings, then Spindle will be right up your alley, just be advised it may take you a while to get into the story.

I received an ARC from Entangled Teen and the author in exchange for an honest review.


  1. I'm so happy you stuck with the story and it ended up being worth it, Barb. It does sound like it became exciting and I like the sound of the characters. :)

  2. I'm glad this picked up and ended up being worth it.
    I 'm always close to DNFing too many books! Great Review!
    Tori @ In Tori Lex

  3. I'm glad you didn't DNF and that it picked up for you! I really want to try this one myself, I'll have to keep it in mind to stick it out a through the beginning. Great review!