Winter Rose

( 13 )

Overview

Sorrow and trouble and bitterness will hound you and yours and the children of yours…

Some said the dying words of Nial Lynn, murdered by his own son, were a wicked curse. To others, it was a winter’s tale spun by firelight on cold, dark nights. But when Corbet Lynn came to rebuild his family estate, memories of his grandfather’s curse were rekindled by young and old--and rumors filled the heavy air of summer. In the woods that border Lynn Hall, free-spirited Rois Melior roams ...

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Overview

Sorrow and trouble and bitterness will hound you and yours and the children of yours…

Some said the dying words of Nial Lynn, murdered by his own son, were a wicked curse. To others, it was a winter’s tale spun by firelight on cold, dark nights. But when Corbet Lynn came to rebuild his family estate, memories of his grandfather’s curse were rekindled by young and old--and rumors filled the heavy air of summer. In the woods that border Lynn Hall, free-spirited Rois Melior roams wild and barefooted. And as autumn gold fades, she is consumed with Corbet Lynn, obsessed with his secret past…

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Woods-wise and free-spirited, Rois Melior is the opposite of her sensible sister, Laurel. But both Rois, who narrates, and Laurel fall under the spell of the stranger who enters their world. Decades ago, according to village gossip, Tearle Lynn murdered his father and mysteriously disappeared. Now Tearle's son, Corbet, has come home to rebuild crumbling Lynn Hall. Despite her attraction to Corbet, Rois is warned by her otherworldly senses that he is not what he seems. As Laurel falls hard for Corbet, Rois searches for the truth about the Lynns, but the answers she finds lead only to more questions. When Corbet disappears, Laurel begins to sicken and fade. To save her sister as well as Corbet, Rois will have to come to terms with the secret of her own changeling identity. The pace here is deliberate and sure, with no false steps; the writing is richly textured and evocative. McKillip (The Book of Atrix Wolf, and winner in 1975 of a World Fantasy Award for her novel The Forgotten Beasts of Eld) weaves a dense web of desire and longing, human love and inhuman need. (July)
VOYA - Jennifer Fakolt
She sees him first as a fall of light beside the secret, rose-covered spring. Only later does Rose learn that he rode into town on a horse the color of buttermilk, and that he has otherworldly green eyes. Rose becomes obsessed with the secrets that the handsome stranger, Corbet, stirs to life in their insulated town. Unlike her gentle, domestic older sister Laurel, Rose is raven-haired and wild, and she herself has eyes that see a whisper more than the human world. Rose knows where to find wild ginger, and where the mandrake grows. When Corbet comes to town amid much gossip to rebuild his home, Rose is drawn to him, and to discovering the truth about his grandfather's curse. As winter approaches and Corbet becomes a regular at Rose's family hearth, Rose's reality vacillates. In this, the season of the curse, Laurel has eyes only for the compelling Corbet, and loses interest in her betrothed, Perrin, Winter rages, Corbet vanishes, and Laurel, like her mother before her, loses the will to live. With her heart out of this world, Laurel becomes little more than a ghost gazing out at the bleak snowy woods, watching and waiting for Corbet's return. Only Rose knows that Corbet has faerie blood, and that he is a prisoner of the winter. Rose alone can cross the thresholds between worlds, save her sister and rescue Corbet from the curse, by loving and holding fast, but she too is in danger because of her own fey vision. Rose gains knowledge of the heightened world of faerie, and of her ancestry, but learns that true love belongs in the perhaps lesser, but more compassionate human world. Winter Rose is exquisitely crafted. McKillip achieves with words what Debussy does with music: she pulls at, and elicits an agreement of truth from the heart of the reader. Winter Rose is like a tone poem. Evocative imagery calls up a slice of winter: both its pale desolation, and its flame-colored, firelit passion. It is easy, also, to empathize with the characters; both those grounded in the reality of daily life like Laurel and her father, and those like Rose who seem not to fit, because they touch "something rich and strange." Like winter itself, this is an opalescent and beautiful, but long-feeling short novel. Give this to the exceptional fantasy reader who relish the language, as well as the soul of the tale. VOYA Codes: 5Q 3P S (Hard to imagine it being any better written, Will appeal with pushing, Senior High-defined as grades 10 to 12).
Library Journal
Wild and free-spirited Rois Melior finds Corbett Lynn rebuilding his grandfather's house in the woods. Soon her engaged sister, the practical and domestic Laurel, has fallen for Corbett. When Corbett disappears, Rois travels during sleep between the woods and another shadow world to find him. McKillip's (The Book of Atrix Wolfe, Ace, 1995) lyrical imagery infuses this coming-of-age story with intrigue in a world of nature. Highly recommended for fantasy collections.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780441009343
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 6/1/2002
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 627,215
  • Age range: 18 years
  • Product dimensions: 5.10 (w) x 7.10 (h) x 0.72 (d)

Meet the Author


Patricia A. McKillip is a winner of the World Fantasy Award, and the author of many fantasy novels, including The Riddlemaster of Hed trilogy, Stepping from the Shadows, and The Cygnet and the Firebird. She lives in Oregon.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 13 )
Rating Distribution

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(11)

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Sort by: Showing all of 13 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 4, 2012

    I love this book. I love it so much that i can hardly stop from

    I love this book. I love it so much that i can hardly stop from buying extra copies when I see it. It is lyrical, mysterious, intriguing.

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  • Posted June 23, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    McKillip's best.

    I love Patricia McKillip's writing. That bald statement doesn't do the depth of my feeling justice, but there it lies. She turns the simplest statement into poetry, creating exquisite images that shimmer before the mind's eye long after the book has been closed; she imbues the whole world with magic, drawing forth colors unimaginable from the stark black text on a white page.

    It is possible that Winter Rose is her best book. Where normally her prose creates just the slightest distance, separating the reader from the actions described, the prose in Winter Rose is immediate, urgent, driving. Where normally her characters are just a little bit of a cipher, subject to motivations just the tiniest bit outside human ken, here her characters are warmly, achingly human. And where normally I finish one of her novels awed and melancholy and delighted, I finished Winter Rose wanting to scream.

    She does all this by a simple change in perspective.

    Normally, McKillip writes in a tight third-person perspective, shifting between characters at the chapter breaks. It is this that creates just the little bit of distance, this that keeps her characters ciphers. It gives her scope, for she often writes novels where the characters start spread across the map and only come together during the climax; but it does lessen the emotional punch. In Winter Rose, however, she is concerned with only one character: Rois Melior, the wild child of wood and water and bramble. Given that narrowing of focus, McKillip wisely delivers an arrestingly beautiful first-person perspective, gifting Rois with all of McKillip's own skill at seeing showers of gold in a summer sunbeam and the Wild Hunt coursing across a windblown sky. From the very first page that "I" makes Rois as ethereally flawless as McKillip's prose.

    And that was why I wanted to scream at the conclusion of her tale. From the very first page I took Rois to my heart and I did not want to let her go -- and the ending McKillip weaves for her, enigmatic and difficult as always, cut me to the bone. It is, by fairy tale standards, a happy ending; but she deserved so much more.

    Oh, you wanted to know about the plot? Well, it's a mixture of The Snow Queen and Tam Lin, and either I've gotten better at deciphering McKillip's climaxes or this is a remarkably coherent one. It is also about the stain that child abuse spreads through a family, and that element is handled so deftly that it is far more heartbreaking than anything more preachy could be.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 29, 2005

    Ehh. . . Not bad

    I picked up McKillip's Winter Rose expecting to be transported to the world within the novel. Definitely not what I expected. . . I'm normally a big fan of all types of fiction, including fantasy, but this just didn't do it for me. After a while, even the characters became one dimensional. The language is beautiful, but too repetitive. I was disappointed, to say the least.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2005

    I loved this story!!

    If you started reading this book, and you thought the ending was going to stink, it doesn't! The ending is extremely good! So's the book!! I even have my bf reading it!(or at least she better!!)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 17, 2003

    Fantasy anew

    Simply put, this book is responsible for my love of fantasy. McKillip's rich and elegant writing became an addiction for me upon finishing the novel. For those new or inexperienced to fantasy, or for the older, wiser vetrans, this is not a story to miss.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 21, 2000

    poetic and dreamy

    McKillip is a poet. No one else I've read can write like her. This is a very dreamlike fairy tale that sucks you in and won't let go.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 27, 2000

    a dream

    This book starts 'They said later he rode into the village on a horse the color of buttermilk, but I saw him walk out of the wood.' and so you are thrown into a world of dreamlike reality. That is as close as I can get to describing what it feels like to read this book. I had to read it twice just to make sure that I had actually read it the first time and not dreamed it. The story its self is captivating but the way everything is described will leave you spell bound.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 1, 2000

    WOW

    It wraps you up into it. You couldn't put it down even if you wanted to! It is a wonderful story. A little bit Tam Lin'ish. A great book to be read again and again

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    Posted May 11, 2011

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    Posted February 5, 2009

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    Posted September 2, 2009

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    Posted December 9, 2008

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    Posted August 6, 2010

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