Outside in the Cold | The Bear and the Nightingale | A Review

Another gorgeous day, another interesting book to review.

I read this book on cold evenings, under a bunch of blankets, trying to keep warm.

This book is hauntingly good and I fell in love with the title straight away. It’s like a heavy, aggressive animal against a light and seemingly bright animal. Winter vs Summer.


‘Frost-demons have no interest in mortal girls wed to mortal men. In the stories, they only come for the wild maiden.’

In a village at the edge of the wilderness of northern Russia, where the winds blow cold and the snow falls many months of the year, an elderly servant tells stories of sorcery, folklore and the Winter King to the children of the family, tales of old magic frowned upon by the church.

But for the young, wild Vasya these are far more than just stories. She alone can see the house spirits that guard her home, and sense the growing forces of dark magic in the woods…

To be perfectly honest, I wasn’t sure what to expect when this book landed in my post box. I was interested regarding the whole Grimm fairy-tale theme, something which I’ve read as a kid and older teen.

This book takes you into the strange world of magic and cold. Set in a small Russian village, we follow the life of Vasya, the youngest of five children and just how special she really is.

This wild child, as she becomes known by her step-mother and local priest, sets out to save her village from the horrors of winter. But does she succeed?

I recommend this book for lovers of mysticism and fairy-tales, but it’s another one of those books to not read after dark.

Let me know in the comments below if you’ve read Ms Arden’s The Bear and the Nightingale and what you thought of it.



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