Scholastic. Oct. 2020. 320p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781338268492.
Gr 9 Up–Donnelly’s feminist retelling of Grimms’ fairy tale “Snow White” is told from the point of view of princess Sophie. Like Snow White, Sophie has lips as red as blood, skin as pale as snow, and dark hair. Her father died years ago, and approaching 17, Sophie is expected to marry well and inherit his throne. However, Queen Adelaide, Sophie’s stepmother, despises her. While beautiful, Sophie is perceived by the queen to be too foolish, kind, and weak to be a leader—and Sophie undoubtedly believes her. The King of Crows visits the queen in her mirror and tells her Sophie is her biggest threat. In turn, she orders the huntsman to kill Sophie and retrieve her heart. Seven brothers walking in the Darkwood hear Sophie’s scream, find her, and save her life by building her a new heart. The brothers clothe her, feed her, and bring her back to health. They also provide some much-needed comic relief and try to convince Sophie to view kindness as a strength. Fearing for her safety, they advise Sophie to stay hidden. After attempting to leave for the first time, the brothers find Sophie and tell her the truth of what happened. Sophie realizes she cannot wait any longer. She embarks on a treacherous yet successful journey home to Skandinay to reclaim what was stolen from her.
VERDICT An empowering and action-packed feminist retelling that will be popular with fantasy and fairy tale–loving teens.

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