Broken wish

Julie C. Dao

Book - 2020

"Elva must learn to wield her magical powers in a town that fears all witches while righting her family's past wrongs before it's too late"--

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Series
Mirror (Hyperion (Publisher)) ; 1.
Subjects
Genres
Fantasy fiction
Published
Los Angeles : Hyperion 2020.
Edition
First edition
Language
English
Item Description
"The Mirror: Broken Wish marks the first book in an innovative four-book fairy-tale series written by Julie C. Dao, Dhonielle Clayton, Jennifer Cervantes, and L. L. McKinney, following one family over several generations, and the curse that plagues it." -- front flap.
Physical Description
311 pages ; 22 cm
Audience
Ages 14-18.
Grades 10-12.
ISBN
9781368046381
136804638X
Main Author
Julie C. Dao (author)
Review by Booklist Reviews

Elva's family has odd luck—two good things happen before something bad occurs—that they trace to her mother's short-lived friendship with accused witch Mathilda. Elva herself has prophetic visions, and a particularly alarming one sends her to seek help from the very witch who may have cursed them. As Elva grows to know and love Mathilda, she convinces the witch that times have changed and people are more tolerant of strange abilities. On the night the town council considers Mathilda's request for acceptance, events turn chaotic and Elva is caught in a deadly trap of her own making. Once again, as she did in her Rise of the Empress duo, Dao has spun a fine tale reminiscent of classics—in this case "Sleeping Beauty" and "Rapunzel"—and re-ignited the magic that still lives within imaginary worlds. A few slightly sentimentalized bits don't dim the pleasure of this well-paced tale. This is the first entry in The Mirror quartet, whose subsequent volumes will be written by Dhonielle Clayton, Jennifer Cervantes, and L. L. McKinney. Grades 7-12. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Booklist Reviews

Elva's family has odd luck—two good things happen before something bad occurs—that they trace to her mother's short-lived friendship with accused witch Mathilda. Elva herself has prophetic visions, and a particularly alarming one sends her to seek help from the very witch who may have cursed them. As Elva grows to know and love Mathilda, she convinces the witch that times have changed and people are more tolerant of strange abilities. On the night the town council considers Mathilda's request for acceptance, events turn chaotic and Elva is caught in a deadly trap of her own making. Once again, as she did in her Rise of the Empress duo, Dao has spun a fine tale reminiscent of classics—in this case "Sleeping Beauty" and "Rapunzel"—and re-ignited the magic that still lives within imaginary worlds. A few slightly sentimentalized bits don't dim the pleasure of this well-paced tale. This is the first entry in The Mirror quartet, whose subsequent volumes will be written by Dhonielle Clayton, Jennifer Cervantes, and L. L. McKinney. Grades 7-12. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.

Review by PW Annex Reviews

Set in 19th-century Germany, this touching fantasy by Dao (Song of the Crimson Flower) redefines the witches of the Grimm brothers' fairy tales. Ever since she can remember, 16-year-old Elva has been able to see the future in reflective surfaces, and her family has long suffered a peculiar pattern of blessings: "Always two good things, followed by one bad thing." As a promise to her mother over fear of backlash from the cruel townsfolk, she swears to keep her abilities secret until, encouraged to see her ability as a gift, she begins to use it for her family's benefit. When she sees a vision of a storm ravaging their farm, though, Elva seeks out Mathilda, a purported witch with whom her mother once exchanged long-hidden letters and who holds the key to Elva's ability—and possibly to the family's curse. Told in fairy tale cadences that softly explore the responsibilities of power and privilege, the narrative returns warmth and agency to the witches of childhood stories while following the heart of a young woman willing to do anything for her family. Ages 14–up. Agent: Tamar Rydzinski, Context Literary Agency. (Oct.) Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly Annex.

Review by PW Annex Reviews

Set in 19th-century Germany, this touching fantasy by Dao (Song of the Crimson Flower) redefines the witches of the Grimm brothers' fairy tales. Ever since she can remember, 16-year-old Elva has been able to see the future in reflective surfaces, and her family has long suffered a peculiar pattern of blessings: "Always two good things, followed by one bad thing." As a promise to her mother over fear of backlash from the cruel townsfolk, she swears to keep her abilities secret until, encouraged to see her ability as a gift, she begins to use it for her family's benefit. When she sees a vision of a storm ravaging their farm, though, Elva seeks out Mathilda, a purported witch with whom her mother once exchanged long-hidden letters and who holds the key to Elva's ability—and possibly to the family's curse. Told in fairy tale cadences that softly explore the responsibilities of power and privilege, the narrative returns warmth and agency to the witches of childhood stories while following the heart of a young woman willing to do anything for her family. Ages 14–up. Agent: Tamar Rydzinski, Context Literary Agency. (Oct.) Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly Annex.

Review by School Library Journal Reviews

Gr 6–10—A Grimm's fairy tale mashup that will draw in readers and hold their attention. Set in Germany in the mid-1800s, this story follows a young woman as she befriends but ultimately betrays a witch, then follows her daughter as she repeats a similar fate. Agnes moves into a cottage and begins a friendship with her neighbor, Mathilda, who turns out to have magical powers. Mathilda agrees to help Agnes have a child so long as she promises to remain a loyal friend. Agnes does not keep this promise. Seventeen years later, her daughter Elva is plagued by visions of the future and seeks out the same witch for help. By combining threads from multiple fairy tales (magic mirrors, mystical pregnancies, lucky fish), Dao creates a fascinating world where all the stories are both true and untrue. Although novels set in Northern Europe in the 1800s are often culturally homogenous, and the main characters here are portrayed as white, Dao touches on the immigration of other groups into Germany at that time, as well as having Elva see in the future that her descendents may be a different race from her. The ending will leave readers eager for a sequel. It isn't a hopeful read, being less like Gail Carson Levine's Ella Enchanted and more like Emma Donoghue's Kissing the Witch (without the sexual content), but this does not make the story any less intriguing. VERDICT A must-have for fans of fractured fairy tales.—Jeri Murphy, C.F. Simmons M.S., Aurora, IL Copyright 2020 School Library Journal.

Review by School Library Journal Reviews

Gr 6–10—A Grimm's fairy tale mashup that will draw in readers and hold their attention. Set in Germany in the mid-1800s, this story follows a young woman as she befriends but ultimately betrays a witch, then follows her daughter as she repeats a similar fate. Agnes moves into a cottage and begins a friendship with her neighbor, Mathilda, who turns out to have magical powers. Mathilda agrees to help Agnes have a child so long as she promises to remain a loyal friend. Agnes does not keep this promise. Seventeen years later, her daughter Elva is plagued by visions of the future and seeks out the same witch for help. By combining threads from multiple fairy tales (magic mirrors, mystical pregnancies, lucky fish), Dao creates a fascinating world where all the stories are both true and untrue. Although novels set in Northern Europe in the 1800s are often culturally homogenous, and the main characters here are portrayed as white, Dao touches on the immigration of other groups into Germany at that time, as well as having Elva see in the future that her descendents may be a different race from her. The ending will leave readers eager for a sequel. It isn't a hopeful read, being less like Gail Carson Levine's Ella Enchanted and more like Emma Donoghue's Kissing the Witch (without the sexual content), but this does not make the story any less intriguing. VERDICT A must-have for fans of fractured fairy tales.—Jeri Murphy, C.F. Simmons M.S., Aurora, IL Copyright 2020 School Library Journal.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

"Elva must learn to wield her magical powers in a town that fears all witches while righting her family's past wrongs before it's too late"--

Review by Publisher Summary 2

The Mirror: Broken Wish marks the first book in an innovative four-book fairy-tale quartet written by Julie C. Dao, Dhonielle Clayton, J.C. Cervantes, and L. L. McKinney, following one family over several generations, and the curse that plagues it.Sixteen-year-old Elva has a secret. She has visions and strange powers that she will do anything to hide. She knows the warnings about what happens to witches in their small village of Hanau. She’s heard the terrible things people say about the Witch of the North Woods, and the malicious hunts that follow...When Elva accidentally witnesses a devastating vision of the future, she decides she has to do everything she can to prevent it. Tapping into her powers for the first time, Elva discovers a magical mirror and its owner—none other than the Witch of the North Woods herself. As Elva learns more about her burgeoning magic, and the lines between hero and villain start to blur, she must find a way to right past wrongs before it’s too late."BROKEN WISH is a darkly glittering fairytale of shattered promises and powerful magic. Dao opens a door to an enchanting new world tucked within the seams of our own." - Emily A. Duncan, New York Times bestselling author of Wicked Saints"An enchanting beginning to what promises to be a gripping family saga. BROKEN WISH whisks readers into a beautifully wrought fairy tale that is at once familiar and new, and introduces readers to Elva, whose family’s past is riddled with secrets and curses. It will be hard to put down until the final page!" - Elizabeth Lim, New York Times bestselling author of the A TWISTED TALE books"A clever tale about the importance of promises and the limits of friendship, perfect for a snug night by the fireside." - Liz Braswell, New York Times bestselling author of the A TWISTED TALE books