Series: Prisoner of Ice and Snow #1
Published by Bloomsbury Publishing on April 4th 2017
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy & Magic, Action & Adventure, Survival Stories, Family, Siblings, General
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She'll do anything to break her sister out of prison--even get arrested on purpose.When thirteen-year-old Valor is sent to jail, she couldn't be happier. Demidova's prison for criminal children is exactly where she wants to be. Valor's twin sister, Sasha, is serving a life sentence for stealing from the royal family, and Valor is going to help her escape . . . from the inside.
Never mind that no one has escaped the prison in centuries. Valor has a master plan and resources most people could only dream about. But she didn't count on having to outsmart both the guards and her fellow prisoners. If Valor's plan is to succeed, she'll need to make some unlikely allies. And if the plan fails, she and Sasha could end up with fates worse than prison.
This exciting middle-grade debut effortlessly melds an unforgettable protagonist, a breathless plot, and stunning world-building--and is impossible to put down.
"Prisoner of Ice and Snow is an exciting, fast-paced story, full of twists and turns. Valor is an engaging heroine who never loses courage, even when everything goes wrong. I was captivated from the first word to the last. This is a story readers will love again and again!" --Jennifer A. Nielsen, New York Times bestselling author of The False Prince
"Action-packed and full of heart, Prisoner of Ice and Snow is a riveting tale of betrayal, intrigue, and the love between two sisters. Valor's determination and the risks she takes to save her beloved twin will have you rooting for her from the very first page." --AimÃ©e Carter, author of Simon Thorn and the Wolf's Den
Prisoner of Ice and Snow is Ruth Lauren’s fantasy, middle grade debut and it’s sure to be a bestseller. I genuinely loved this book so hard. Like, if I ever happen to find myself in prison (because I’ve snapped, working in retail, and killed all the customers), it wouldn’t be Michael Schofield that I’d be ringing to break me out. Nuh-uh, he’s been replaced. By Valor. Who is Valor, you ask? Well, she’s the thirteen-year-old heroine of Prisoner of Ice and Snow who gets sent to prison on purpose – and not just by robbing a bank, Schofield-style, nope, Valor decides to assassinate Prince Anatol! That actually sounds more dramatic than it is, as she only *attempts* to assassinate him; he was in no danger. The girl has more arrow skills that Katniss and Oliver Queen put together. And it’s all in an attempt to save her twin sister, Sasha. All together now, “Awwww.”
I absolutely loved Prisoner of Ice and Snow, it’s set in the world of Demidova, and it seems to come across quite Russian, with the names and the biting, unrelenting cold that seems to be the norm and y’know the whole ice and snow thing. It wasn’t really about the world, though, even though it was written fantastically well; this book is just about one sister willing to do anything to free her sister, it’s as simple as that and that’s what made this book even more fantastic. Valor’s sole mission was Sasha, right from the very off and everything she does – getting thrown in prison in the first place, memorising maps of routes out, making friends to help aid their escape, it’s all about getting Sasha away and clearing her name, proving that she didn’t steal the musical box which was why she was in the prison to begin with.
Despite the relatively simple plot: go to prison, break sister out of prison, live happily ever after, etc, the book is just chock full of emotion. I remember seeing I had 53 minutes to go in the book, just as a big thing was about to happen and I was like, “No, it’s too early”. I was just so worried for Valor, for Sasha, for Feliks, for Katia. I was suspicious of Prince Anatol and what he wanted from Valor and I was suspicion of the Warden who creeped the living daylights out of me. I never felt secure whilst reading the book, I always felt like I wanted to look over my shoulder, because Valor was trying to do something no one had done ever, or for well over 300 years, and I was so anxious reading every single page.
I absolutely loved this book so much. It had my heart from the very start, and any sister willing to do what Valor does for Sasha makes me just want to weep for her bravery, her heart, her warmth, everything about her made me so proud to be reading her story. The whole plot of the book was fantastic and Ruth Lauren has written such an amazing book, I genuinely enjoyed every page, despite the anxiety practically rolling off me in waves, in fear. I am in desperate need of a sequel, and the ending of Prisoner of Ice and Snow very much left the door open for a potential sequel, should Ruth Lauren feel the need (PLEASE RUTH LAUREN FEEL THE NEED!!!!!!!). If not, it did end well, don’t get me wrong, but I am itching for more from the world of Demidova, in particular with Valor and Sasha. And even Feliks! My little heart adored Feliks!