Saturday, Apr 22, 2023
NETTLE & BONE by T. Kingfisher
2023 Nebula Award Nominee Reviews Part 3/6
Reviewed by: Abe Ziesing
Kingfisher picks through her bag of tropes and tricks to brew up an original fairy tale worthy of its award nomination(s).
Marra is on a quest to simultaneously rescue a princess and avenge her sister's murder with an unlikely alliance of quirky, mismatched characters... sound familiar? It doesn't matter how many times this brand of plot has appeared in sword and sorcery, and epic fantasy, because this fresh take, with a cast of enchanting heroes, anti-heroes and villains is sure to whisk you away on an all-new and highly enjoyable experience. Kingfisher injects plenty of elements stereotypical of fables and fairy tales such as hermit witches, fairy godmothers and humanlike animals, but she's got the golden touch of an author that lovingly weaves them into her story along with the unique elements that really make this book special (I don't want to spoil any of those). It's an absolute page-turner, free of clutter in the form of unnecessary asides, dialogue or descriptive passages; and it stands firmly alone with the reader walking away satisfied, as opposed to wondering how many books will be in this fantasy series. Additionally, the humor in this book is absolutely spot-on. No cheesy distractions, and like everything else in this book, not too hot, not too cold, juuuust right!