Review Blog

Aug 28 2012

Snow White and the Huntsman: A Novel by Lily Blake

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Based on the film of the same name. Atom Publishing, 2012. ISBN: 9781907411700.
Lily Blake's Snow White and the Huntsman is reasonably well written, but as is the way with novelisations, it's a little more expository that emotional. Although Snow White is the main character, the Huntsman and the evil Queen Ravenna dominate the page. Flawed people usually are more interesting characters after all.
The prologue sets up the plot, with Ravenna seducing the king, Snow White's father, then betraying him with her army who enter his kingdom and slay all his soldiers. Ravenna's mother was a powerful witch who imbued Ravenna and her brother Finn with spells to keep them young and beautiful so they can exact revenge for her. Fortunately, as with all good fairy tales, there is a catch: keeping Snow White alive is necessary for the magic to work.
The huntsman, Eric, struggles with his own inner demons. Suffering guilt and remorse after the death of his beloved wife, Eric is now a shambling alcohol-addled shadow of his former self. When he inadvertently finds himself on the trail of Snow White, tasked by the Queen to kill her, he must reconcile his sense of right with his shameful behavior, and find the right path.
Snow White can't help but seem bland. She is perfectly beautiful, and of course, kind to children and small animals. Plus she has all those qualities important for a leading lady, like being self sacrificing, noble, and determined. She seems to focus on her childhood friend, William, a little too much, but the romantic elements are not explored in depth. Ultimately, the ending is left up-in-the-air; does this mean Universal Pictures are planning a sequel?
Trisha Buckley

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