Hag in Exile
Author: Rivka Aarons-Hughes
Title: Hag in Exile
Series: Part of the Sharing the Season Collection
Rating: Four Petals
On the Author's Website:
Beira, the Winter Hag, has been whisked off to hiding in Loving, Michigan. It's for her own good, she's been told, but she's starting to suspect it's a lot more useful to someone else. With the Winter Solstice rapidly approaching, she doesn't have time to worry about those who might wish her ill—or her growing feelings for Plum, a New Fae and one of her only contacts since she arrived in Loving.
Then another New Fae shows up, puts Plum under a love spell, and tries to further isolate Beira. And it may be too late for Beira to fix everything rapidly ruining her life.
I received this book as an ARC through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Beira is in exile, hiding from the corporate mining company that wants to turn the ancient lands in Ireland she has lived on for centuries into a smoking pit of ruin. Until all the red tape and the company are gone, she is safer hiding out in Michigan. Except, what is supposed to be a terrible exile turns out to be somewhat bearable thanks to Plum stopping by every day. Then Plum is ensnared in a terrible spell and Beira realizes she has to choose between her duties as the Winter Hag renewing the world for another year and the love she never thought she deserved.
Overall I enjoyed reading this story. Beira is not your typical fae. She's not pretty and her personality is a little grating, but I couldn't help cheering her on. Plum, or the Sugarplum Fairy, is also very interesting. The combination of the Winter Hag, the person that is supposed to send the world to sleep every winter to ensure the earth then has the strength for spring to come, with the Sugarplum Fairy dancing across the stage was probably the most unique pairing I've ever read.
I wasn't as enamored with the plot. The twists and turns definitely kept my interest and I was all too eager to keep turning the pages to see what happened next, but the plot has been done before. Because it wasn't unique it couldn't hold up in comparison to the characters. I also found the twists to be very predictable. I figured out who the bad guy was from the very first, offhand mention of them and the rest of the story was equally obvious. However, as a cute, holiday story it didn't necessarily need to be unpredictable, and what was there worked really well with the overall theme.
The characters in this story and their relationship with each other was very unique. The plot was less so, but it worked for a holiday short story. I enjoyed reading this story a lot and that is why I recommend it.
Maggie reviews paranormal and fantasy novels and novellas. She also interviews authors and hosts giveaways.