Sunday, July 29, 2012

The Ice Queen by Alice Hoffman

Be careful what you wish for. For a woman, one wish ends in childhood tragedy. The second results in being struck by lightening. Following her lightening strike she feels horribly cold from the inside out and cannot stop the ticking in her head. Her only solace is with a fellow lightening strikee who was supposedly dead for 45 minutes before he got up and walked out of the hospital. His lasting curse: constant heat. Their relationship is anything but normal. How did lightening turn one person to fire and the other to ice.

This is a story of one woman, obsessed with death, unable to keep family, living her life through loss and the constant shadow regrettable wishes.

Alice Hoffman is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors. Her writing style is like nothing else I have ever read before. She takes a story that at first glance seems like a normal daily life that will result in a superficial story but instead comes up with something so deep and meaningful that one read through doesn't do it justice.

I love what Amy Tan says, "Alice Hoffman takes seemingly ordinary lives and lets us see and feel extraordinary things."

Or the Washington Post Book World, "A marvelous writer with a painter's eye who takes the landscape of ordinary people experiencing ordinary emotions and colors them in unexpected ways."

This book caught me completely off guard and reeled me in. I even found myself crying at the end. (That's when you know it's a good book.)

The Ice Queen just seems so chalk full of symbolism of someone who made a mistakenly harsh childhood wish and is forced to live with her guilty conscience the rest of her life. She completely cuts herself off from the world becoming figuratively cold to any other person. It is only when she is struck by lightening, due to her second wish, that her coldness to the world manifests itself literally and she must learn how to live with her new handicaps and gains a new appreciation for the world the way it was before.

Alice Hoffman is so skillful in the way that she reveals elements of the story. Everything is perfectly weaved within the pages. Not one plot line is exposed a moment too soon.

This was a great book! You should read it!

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