Reviews

Deathless, by Catherynne M. Valente

patireads's review against another edition

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dark mysterious slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.75

matanee's review against another edition

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5.0

This book was probably the best book I've ever read. Perfect combination of an imaginary world and rough, bloody reality in the coldest country in the coldest era, wrapped in the atmosphere of classic fairytales. A perfect, perfect book. I seriously had shivers, and that's a rare thing.

It just became my favourite book, ever.

Also, if they ever decide to make a movie out of it and they don't cast Benedict Cumberbatch as Koschei, I'm gonna be really angry.

nsaphra's review against another edition

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5.0

"Soviet-setting retelling of classic Russian fairytale as bleak poly romance" is so obviously pandering to me, I'd love it even if the writing weren't so beautiful. The prose is pretentious in that modern-fantasy-referencing-folklore way, but less so than Neil Gaiman, who I've always found tolerable enough.

piratequeen's review against another edition

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2.0

I wanted to like this. It started out well, with interesting writing, and a vibe similar to that of "The Master and Margarita" (if you've read the Bulgakov classic, you know that's high praise). But it started to kind of fall apart about 2/3 of the way through, as the story veered from fairy-tale oddity to hallucinogenic weirdness. By the time I finished, I was confused, but mostly relieved just to be done with it.

brightshiny's review against another edition

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5.0

Haunting Russian folklore full of rich textures and tones, where drinks spill to absolve themselves of any involvement and voices are deep and rough, like black heels dragged over stone.

claireak95's review against another edition

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4.0

This is a wild book. I feel like I barely knew what was going on most of the time. It's based on Russian folklore and is infused with lots of Russian history, though usually not directly. Koschei the Deathless takes Marya Morevna to be his wife and takes her to his magical world, and there are lots of adventures. It's a very strange book with very strange characters but it is an interesting adventure. I was just lost for most of it. Audio might not be the ideal format.

slipperbunny's review against another edition

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5.0

I bought this because Catherynne Valente came to Finland this year and I wanted to get her signature. I chose Deathless because the story seemed interesting. That was about five months ago and now I have finally read Deathless and I loved it! The writing is so beautiful and the story goes from creepy to sweet so fast that it almost makes me dizzy. This is definitely staying in my permanent shelf and I need to find more books from Valente.

waterdeep's review against another edition

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3.0

edit: rating change 29/6/20

s_lorenz's review against another edition

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adventurous challenging mysterious medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

5.0

annelily's review against another edition

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2.0

I can definitely see why I waited two years to read this book. But I liked the ending, I guess.

Lesson learned: I am always right

———

Reading this book is like hearing your kindergarten teacher swear for the first time. I love Fairyland to pieces, but this book is just not it.

———

“A stick.”
“Ooh, let’s beat her with it!”
- this book probably

———

after two years, i finally attempt to read this!