SFF

Ivory Apples

Tachyon. Oct. 2019. 288p. ISBN 9781616962982. pap. $15.95; ebk. ISBN 9781616962999. FANTASY
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Goldstein’s first novel in a few years (Weighing Shadows) is a contemporary fairy tale of magic, muses, and shadowy figures. Ivy and her three sisters have been told, since they were old enough to understand, that they must never talk about their Great-Aunt Maeve. Though they visit her once a month with their widowed father, they can never talk about those trips or reveal that Maeve is the author of a classic fantasy novel, Ivory Apples, because of its cultish following of rabid fans. That instilled wariness is enough to make Ivy suspicious of Kate Burden, a woman who makes friends with her younger sisters and insinuates herself into the household. When tragedy befalls the family, Kate has a firm grip on all of their lives and Ivy has to do battle to protect Maeve and her sisters.
VERDICT The cheery red cover belies the dark, sometimes bleak story contained within. While the writing is beautiful, the story is uneven and told in fits and starts. For true fans of the author.

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