TW: snakes, insects, sexual assault and emotional abuse
I went into this, knowing nothing but that it was inspired by the story of Medusa, which was enough to sell me. Her story has enthralled me since I discovered the full tale when I was younger, so I’m always up for a Medusa inspired, atmospheric tale of curses and female friendship.
One girl must uncover secrets of the past to save her friend from a terrible curse in this dark and mesmerizing story of love, revenge, and redemption inspired by the myth of Medusa.
Milla knows two things to be true: Demons are real, and fear will keep her safe.
Milla’s whole world is her family’s farm. She is never allowed to travel to the village and her only friend is her beloved older brother, Niklas. When a bright-eyed girl named Iris comes to stay, Milla hopes her loneliness might finally be coming to an end. But Iris has a secret she’s forbidden to share: The village is cursed by a demon who possesses girls at random, and the townspeople live in terror of who it will come for next.
Now, it seems, the demon has come for Iris. When Iris is captured and imprisoned with other possessed girls, Milla leaves home to rescue her and break the curse forever. Her only company on the journey is a terrible new secret of her own: Milla is changing, too, and may soon be a demon herself.
The Cold Is in Her Bones is a novel about the dark, reverberating power of pain, the yearning to be seen and understood, and the fragile optimism of love.
This has such a lush, rich writing style that just makes this book so compulsively readable. Every line hums with hidden secrets and I loved the mysterious, creepy atmosphere of the story.
I was instantly hooked by what has to be one of the best prologues I’ve read for a while. It was engaging, nuanced and really drew you into the world of the curse and this claustrophobic village. Also, it sets up how Arsdale critiques society through the story, without coming across as too preachy.
At the heart of the story is Milla, who is so desperately alone, trapped within her home by her family and I really loved seeing her story unfold, though I can’t mention specifics without spoiling it.
This is a twisty, atmospheric and slow burn tale of curses and vengeance that you want to go into knowing very little about.