Bitter Snow

Bitter Snow

by Lauren Sweet

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Overview

Bitter Snow by Lauren Sweet

The Bitter Snow Series: A modern-day story of myth, magic and the power of love, based on Hans Christian Andersen�s �The Snow Queen�
Volume One: Bitter Snow

Whatever you do, don�t open the door...

It�s St. Nicholas�s Eve, the ancient festival of Bellsnichol, when demons roam the dark winter night. In the tiny town of Bremerton, tradition demands that everyone stay inside, barring the doors to keep evil at bay.

Gilly Breslin doesn�t believe in demons�or old superstitions. It�s her sixteenth birthday, and Kai, the boy she�s been in love with forever, has finally started treating her as more than just the girl next door. When she receives a mysterious, romantic invitation to meet him at midnight, she sneaks away from the town celebrations and waits for him in her empty house. She has no idea the demons are real�and that their queen has chosen Kai as her newest consort. If Gilly opens her door to him, they could both be dragged into an ancient web of fear and darkness that threatens everything they love.

This book is a novella - about 87 pages (33,000 words)

Product Details

BN ID: 2940149090396
Publisher: Lauren Sweet
Publication date: 12/04/2013
Series: Bitter Snow , #1
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 348 KB

About the Author


Image of Lauren Sweet


Lauren Sweet was born and raised in New Jersey, spending her formative years with a book in her hand or under the desk in math class. She tried her hand at writing during her misspent youth, took a twenty-year detour through the business world, and finally escaped to Alaska and earned a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from the University of Alaska Anchorage. Lauren is now a full-time freelance writer and editor living near Portland, OR. Other esoteric skills include astrology, tarot card reading, figure skating, and the ability to do a perfect split.

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Bitter Snow 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
MikkoAzul More than 1 year ago
A fantastic spin on the old world tale! This modern-day fairy tale begins familiarly enough with teen angst and the treacherous navigation of  Gilly's desire to transform her best friend relationship with Kai to more. Everything seems to be going smoothly until a stunningly beautiful girl moves to town, capturing Kai's heart and devastating Gilly. It isn't until too late that she realizes that this new girl is the Ice Goddess Perchta, who is bent on world domination - beginning with their small town. Gilly struggles to reconcile the loss of Kai with the growing sense that all is not what it seems. In one fateful, tragic decision, Gilly unintentionally looses Perchta and her evil minions on the town and has inadvertently opened the door to evil. What is a girl to do? Don a fabulous red dress with killer heels, grab your father's bow and kick some demon ass! If only it were that simple...
ysar More than 1 year ago
In the small, close-knit town of Bremerton, soon-to-be sixteen-year-old Gilly is surrounded by safety and tradition. So when the annual Bellsnichol event begins, she expect it to play out just like every other year. After all, the warnings against opening the door on the night demons run through the streets is just part of the tradition, right? Only this year, her lifelong best friend and current crush is unexpectedly distracted by someone new in town, someone with an otherworldly beauty and perhaps an agenda. Gilly’s caught between the overwhelming feelings of first love and betrayal, and the suspicion that the “Snow Queen” from the town’s sleigh parade is anything but just a new girl in town. None of that matters, though, when Kai asks her to meet him at midnight. And when he knocks on her door…? Well, Gilly realizes too late that those tales of demons might not just be silly legends after all. But... I wish I’d read this one before the second book. That’s about the only negative thing I can say about any of it. While Dark Solstice was a damned good story, it was the only book offered to me during it’s review tour, and while I quickly listed it as 4.5 stars, I wonder if I would have gone with a perfect 5 had I read it all in order. Not too shabby for serial novellas, though, huh? The Verdict... Fascinating. Lauren Sweet has done and incredible job of weaving the contemporary Christmas season with old world magic and lore, and she does it in a way that only a true story teller can. Important and foreboding details are subtly woven in throughout the pages, all while Gilly embodies the typical modern teenager, and where usually I’d be correctly guessing what happens next, even my best guesses are nothing compared to each new twist. In Bitter Snow, I’m convinced that the fate of the town really does depend entirely on a teenage girl, that the adults aren’t clueless and gullible but actually victims of potently magic legend, and that even the wildest of ancient lore is altogether real. Perhaps most telling is that I didn’t drop the book the minute legend began to work itself into religion and Christmas season tradition. While that’s generally something I can stomach in historical fiction, I have trouble with it in contemporary stories, as the magic element usually runs roughshod over Christian beliefs and makes a mockery of the ancient ones. But somehow Sweet has made me believe that the Snow Queen and demons are the dark counterpart to a town’s faith, and where mythological beings would normally have me rolling my eyes, I find myself eagerly turning the pages to see what happens next.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Review by: WTFAreYouReading of Night Owl Reviews - 4.5 Stars - Top Pick "Bitter Snow" may be a small book, but don't be fooled. There is definitely a fully grown story packed into its 82 pages! Gilly Breslin and her father call the idealic hamlet of Bremerton home. Though Bremerton is located somewhere in the US, the people and their traditions are strictly Old World. Old World as in Austrian and Bavarian that is. Right down to the annual celebration of Bellsnichol, or St. Nicholas' Eve each December 5th. December 5th also happens to be particularly special for Gilly. Its her birthday, and while the fun and festivities of Bellsnichol promise fun with friends and neighbors; Gilly has her heart set on time spent alone with her best friend Kai. But...you know what they say about "the best laid plans". Things change in a most fantastic way when a beautiful stranger comes to town and Gilly opens a door better left closed...in more ways than one. "Bitter Snow" is the first book in a fabulous retelling of "The Snow Queen". Rather than trying to remake the original tale however, this tale's author has chosen to expand the scope of her work by delving deeper into the lore, and bringing said lore out of its dark past and into the modern world. The Snow Queen does feature in this first book, but she is by no means alone. Her wolven henchmen, imps, and even St. Nicholas himself make an appearance. Gilly proves herself to be a wonderful heroine, full of snark, intelligence, and wit...and the horror laced action is first rate. © Night Owl Reviews
CabinGoddess More than 1 year ago
The story is a re-telling of Han’s Christian Anderson’s dark fairy tale, THE SNOW QUEEN. I grew up with my grandmother loved reading them to me before bed, all the way up till.. heck I don’t thinks he ever stopped. It was… a tradition! Part of me feels she perhaps wanted to scare me straight, of course Hans Christian Anderson fairy tales were meant to square everyone straight and with BITTER SNOW the retelling of the snow queen is retold in a way that makes you feel the darkness creeping in while getting excited about a new version of the story. I started reading this in the wee hours of the morning and did not put it down till I was done. It was the perfect length and it opened up the tale, originally told in seven parts, with an ending just enough of a cliffhanger not to be frustrating, but enough to keep me excited to read the next eight. Last Thursday, December 5th was St. Nicholas’s Eve and being from a family which does celebrate it I had my own traditions  to practice. This year mine consisted of a traditional watching of The Sound of Music and a toast of Soy Egg Nog. Our protagonist Gilly has traditions piled one on top of another living in the small town of Bremerton, SOMEWHERE USA. As a teenager she balks at some of them, even though it is hard to do so.. but perhaps she shouldn’t have because this year especially on her 16th birthday where the celebrating coincided  with  Bellsnichol (St. Nicholas’s Eve) and which in the end turned out to be a bit more exciting than she expected. This is a great series to grab and start reading with your teenager, boy or girl for that matter, it has everything a good young adult should have in it. I also highly recommend it to those who also love reading fairy tales redone. Lauren Sweet hit it out of the park, hats off to her! Mesmerized would be a good description of how this story is for me. The chilling (pun intended) pulls you in and takes you on the ride. There are some points of excitement, fear and those warm feelings you get when thinking about holiday traditions. Her voice was lovely and the characters are well rounded and filled out just enough to keep me hooked. Some of the things discussed in the book are how important traditions are to have. In today’s world everyone is so busy and always does things so fast. A story such as Bitter Snow reminds us not everyone and everything needs to be moving at warp speed. Towns like Gilly’s Bremerton is not so much stuck in the past but actively keeps these traditions alive to teach their children the value of holding onto your heritage. We have a town like this in the state where I grew up. Leavenworth, WA. It’s a place many go as tourists, but knowing many folks who live there, it is also a town,  heavily steeped in traditions (though not as much as Bremerton’s, such as the RUNNING OF THE DEMONS *grin*) but there are very private traditions which the townsfolk hold dear. In a lot of ways this is one of those reads which bring so many wonderful memories back. But like I said, it is full of lessons to be learned and listened to between the lines, just like traditional fairy tales are meant too… scare you straight, or scare you straight back to what you were suppose to be doing in the first place. As Gilly learns, her decisions do not just affect herself, but end up affecting the whole town… 9.5 out of 10 snowflakes
Tina_Chan More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed Bitter Snow.  Even though almost all of the plot takes place within one day, I don't think that any part of the novella was dragged out.  The descriptions were magical and I could totally relate to Gilly, the main character of the series.  I absolutely adored the  setting of Bitter Snow.  The town Gilly lives in is a quaint little town still following ageless traditions, such as the running of the demons. I also really enjoyed the fairy tale aspect of the story.  I am not familiar with The Snow Queen, but Lauren Sweet does an excellent jobs  giving readers a brief, but informative background about the beautiful, but deadly Snow Queen who haunts the  dark woods and frosted  landscapes.  There are definitely some mysterious characters that pop up in the story as well...there's one in particular who I bet is going to play a  bigger role in the following volumes of the series.   Bitter Snow strongly reminded me of The Iron King, another series that I liked reading.  There's a hint of magic in the air...perfect for the holiday seasons!  I look forward to volume two and three of the series being published.