Title: Sisters Red (Fairytale Retellings #1)
Author: Jackson Pearce
On the Shelves: YA Fiction> Fantasy/ Fiction> Retellings
“Scarlett March lives to hunt the Fenris–the werewolves that took her eye when she was defending her sister Rosie from a brutal attack. Armed with a razor-sharp hatchet and blood-red cloak, Scarlett is an expert at luring and slaying the wolves. She’s determined to protect other young girls from a grisly death, and her raging heart will not rest until every single wolf is dead.
Rosie March once felt her bond with her sister was unbreakable. Owing Scarlett her life, Rosie hunts ferociously alongside her. But even as more girls’ bodies pile up in the city and the Fenris seem to be gaining power, Rosie dreams of a life beyond the wolves. She finds herself drawn to Silas, a young woodsman who is deadly with an ax and Scarlett’s only friend–but does loving him mean betraying her sister and all that they’ve worked for?” (Goodreads 2014)
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The story of Sisters Red is a modern retelling of Little Red Riding Hood, focussing around two sisters, Scarlett and Rosie. The characters of Scarlett and Rosie were enjoyable and well written. Scarlett and Rosie were both human and flawed, and they didn’t always get on with each other, like most sisters in real life. Mainly because Scarlett was so overprotective, it was suffocating and Rosie was so naïve at times she put herself in danger just to prove that she could handle things by herself, which was crossing the fine line between bravery and stupidity. However, this made the characters realistic, to me. They weren’t perfect and nothing really went to plan.
It lost half a star for victim blaming. The amount of times Scarlett referred to what the girls around town were wearing in terms of short skirts got irritating quickly, although again I recognise this is just Scarlett’s personality and not a representation of the author’s views- it did get very repetitive and I really wanted Rosie or somebody to correct her on it eventually, which would’ve been a nice way of addressing victim blaming in rape culture- sorry, I got a bit serious there…
The other half of the star was lost for my guessing of the plot/who the Potential was…but I really did enjoy it. I spent most of this book on edge which is a very good sign. Like I’ve already said, the sisters both at times annoyed me but it was a refreshing change to read flawed characters who stayed flawed and didn’t miraculously become likeable entirely throughout the book. I grew to like them despite their flaws. and I could empathise and understand with both Scarlett AND Rosie’s choices, neither seemed more foolish or selfish than the other and you see the sisters come to learn to accept these differences gradually.
It wasn’t rushed, it didn’t feel forced and I loved Pearce’s writing. I’ll definitley be reading Sweetly!