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Review: Book of a Thousand Days by Shannon Hale

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Book of a Thousand Days 5 Stars

As luck would have it, the day Dashti enters the service of a lady is the very day said lady is bricked into a tower for seven years to learn obedience. Dashti goes along with her to keep her company and take care of her. Between fighting off rats, Lady Saren's torpor, and the unsettling attentions of Saren's two very different suitors, Dashti has her hands full. And that's just the beginning.

I love Dashti. She grows so much in this book! She starts off a simple girl from a simple way of life, unquestioningly following the laws of the land, and she becomes a strong woman, confident in herself and her abilities. The book is really Dashti's diary, so it was interesting to see her thinking and even her writing style change as she grows into herself.

Dashti's is the most obvious transformation, but Lady Saren quietly undergoes some drastic changes. She starts out a weak, irritating, ineffective girl who seems to be nothing but a chain around Dashti's neck, but sometime when you aren't looking she becomes something... more.

This is my first time reading Shannon Hale, and if this is any indication of the rest of her work, it won't be my last. I sat down to get started on this before spending a little time on the computer, and the next thing I knew I was finishing it. Seriously. One sitting. There was one part that started to drag just a little bit, but somehow a book about two girls in a tower became a page turner. I enjoyed how Dashti's "voice" changed as she changed, and I'm very impressed with Hale's skill in pulling that off.

I was thrilled to read a young adult book with a strong female lead and no love triangle in sight! Yay! I know I wrote the bit about two suitors, but believe me, there's no love triangle.

I highly recommend this all the way around.

Read "Maid Maleen", the Brothers Grimm story this is based on, on Shannon Hale's website. While you're there, you can also read an excerpt.

Here's a fan's trailer for the book.

Jennifer G.


  1. I was going to post the review for this one today :) I loved this book. Definitely goes on my best reads list. Loved the review.

    I suggest you read her Goose Girl, you will love it.

  2. I second the suggestion for Goose Girl! It is my favorite of Shannon Hale's books.

    I have an award for you at my blog :-)

  3. Goose Girl is definitely on my list, I just found this one cheap when a local bookstore was going out of business.

    Thanks for the award!

  4. I keep hearing fantastic things about this one. I have it at home too. I better get on the ball. Thanks for the review and thanks for visiting Tales of Whimsy! :)

  5. It seemed like all my friends on GoodReads kept raving about Shannon Hale, Goose Girl, and Book of a Thousand Days. She's been on my list forever, and I'm glad I finally got to her!

  6. haven't heard of this book or the author so thanks for the review and will add to my ever-growing TBR!

  7. This sounds really good -- I will be on the lookout for Shannon Hale's books. Thanks for the heads up!

  8. I have read this book and I loved your review :)

    Came across your blog through !


  9. Hi there! I also read this book for the Once Upon a Time Challenge. I enjoyed your review. I also found this ya novel with no "love triangle" to be refreshing and a nice change. =) I could hardly put this book down too, I was totally drawn in! Glad you liked the book. This was my third experience with Hale and I've loved each one. She's a great writer.

  10. I'm really looking forward to reading Goose Girl. Everyone seems to rave about that one!


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