Maria Turtschaninoff, Annie Prime
Maresi came to the Red Abbey in the Hunger Winter. Before then, she had only heard rumours of its existence in secret folk tales. In a world where girls aren’t allowed to learn or do as they please, an island inhabited solely by women sounded like a fantasy. But now Maresi is here, and she knows it is real. She is safe.
Then one day Jai – tangled fair hair, clothes stiff with dirt, scars on her back – arrives on a ship. She has fled to the island to escape terrible danger and unimaginable cruelty.
And the men who hurt her will stop at nothing to find her. Now the women and girls of the Red Abbey must use all their powers and ancient knowledge to combat the forces that wish to destroy them. And Maresi, haunted by her own nightmares, must confront her very deepest, darkest fears.
A story of friendship and survival, magic and wonder, beauty and terror, Maresi will grip you and hold you spellbound.
Brutal and beautiful, Maresi walks the knife edge so thrillingly I read it in one sitting. Embued with myth, wonder, and told with a dazzling, compelling ferocity. I can hardly wait for the next instalment -- Kiran Millwood-Hargrave (author of The Girl of Ink and Stars) Maresi stands out for its startling originality, and for the frightening plausibility of the dangerous world it creates Rebecca Hawkes, Telegraph Combines a flavour of The Handmaid's Tale with bursts of excitement reminiscent of Harry Potter's magic duels Observer Turtschaninoff weaves a hypnotic spell... at once contemporary and timeless Guardian A haunting fable -- Suzy Feay Financial Times Should appeal to fans of Ursula Le Guin... A lucid, layered, deeply engaging story Metro This dark, deceptively simple story is a great addition to the growing feminist fantasy genre Scotsman Dark, powerful and original... it really stands out in a very crowded YA marketplace. Thrilling, suspenseful and gloriously feminist The Bookseller Turtschaninoff creates an original fantasy world, and her parable of sisterhood and bravery will enthral readers Lovereading4kids Beautifully written... Maresi has a touch of Katniss about her, and although the target market is different, female lovers of dystopian fantasy adventures will enjoy the journey The School Librarian A spell-binding feminist fantasy that feels very timely and yet utterly timeless -- SF Said Booktrust, Best Teen Books of 2016 Fantasy and magic blend fluidly in the deeply feminist world... the message is clear: knowledge isn't just power, it can save lives Publishers Weekly Turtschaninoff puts traditional elements of female magic to effective dramatic use, especially in the climactic (and climatic) conflict between Jai's father and the Sisters. But what's more impressive about this fantasy is the subtlety with which the serenity of the island and its way of life is established - through the calls of birds, the sounds of the lapping sea, the smoothness of driftwood The Horn Book Full of courage. Dark, brave and so gripping you will read it in one sitting Laura Dockrill A poignant, slow-burning fantasy Taran Matharu, author of the Summoner fantasy series A beautifully painted, fantastical setting like no other; this story will resonate with me for a long time Ben Alderson, booktuber Atmospheric, immersive and definitely original, Maresi has a quiet urgent magic that makes her story powerful, poignant and memorable For Books' Sake A few times in a life time, a book comes along that wraps you completely in its world and its characters. Wildly imaginative and vivd and filled with wonders... this book makes me proud to be a woman Casey Daveron, booktuber (Casey Ann Books) It's rare to find a YA fantasy with such polished writing, and almost impossible to find a YA title so committed to a sympathetic portrayal of a matriarchy... Utterly satisfying and completely different from standard YA fantasy, this Finnish import seems primed to win over American readers Booklist (starred review) Maresi is a tale of sisterhood, survival and fighting against the odds that will capture the hearts of both teen and adult feminists alike and will leave you feeling extremely empowered... I think it's a very special book and one that deserves lots and lots of attention Lucy Powrie, booktuber (Queen of Contemporary) Maresi is an incredible book... if you like Louise O'Neill's Only Ever Yours, you'll love this. Fantastically original... [and] a very important read Amber Kirk-Ford, booktuber (The Mile Long Bookshelf) Absolutely incredible, wonderfully mesmerising and a complete delight...I will definitely read whatever Turtschaninoff writes in future. Maresi completely captured my heart along with my imagination, and I'm not sure I want it back Once Upon a Bookcase A beautiful tale about women with a very special sisterly bond and I will gladly recommend it to all fantasy lovers LaChouett (blog) A haunting, beautiful dystopian novel, and an inspired breath of fresh air The Book Smugglers (blog) Fantasy and feminism entwined into a beautiful tale of self-sacrifice, female solidarity and championing knowledge as power I Am Mariam (blog) There are no wild love stories, no cute boys and no plucky heroine making sassy remarks... It felt like a breath of fresh air Bored to Death Bookclub (blog) A book about hope, an exercise in utopia, and about how women might change the world... [a] beguiling, compelling book Eve's Alexandria (blog) A breath of fresh air. Distinctly feminist and empowering, yet not a manifesto of any kind Lit Love (blog) The setting is wonderfully depicted, blending reality and fantasy in a compelling way - the perfect backdrop to the story. The story unfolds, with the tension gradually building, but it's pacy enough to keep you reading, mesmerised by the poetic text and wonderful characters. Fantasy and friendship with trauma and darkness make for a memorable book Parents in Touch I think this is a great choice for younger readers, or for older ones seeking a simple tale to sink into Daniella Writes (blog) This has to be one of my favorite reads this year and I was glad that I picked it up. I would recommend this read to anyone who likes powerful fantasy stories about women who overcome overwhelming odds to save the ones they love Confessions of an Ex-Ballerina (blog) I ended up finishing the book in one sitting and after I'd finished I just sat in bed just processing what had happened, I really felt like I'd been thrown right into the story! Vicki in Neverland (blog) The writing was easy to fall into and I was hooked from the first page Sugar Quills (blog) And I'm not sure why I didn't pick it up sooner. Because it is bloody amazing Tea Party Princess (blog) Turtschaninoff's writing is really beautiful, the descriptions flowing and vivid and I just wanted to soak up as much of the world as possible Maia and a Little More (blog)
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