The Winter of the Witch

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 11 Mar 2019

Member Reviews

This was a very satisfying conclusion to an enjoyable trilogy. Even knowing very little about the historical events that are interwoven with the folklore, I found this book just as solid a read as the first two, if not even better.
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A really intense conclusion to the series. I'm so glad that all of the storylines finally came to fruition. There was a lot of heartache in this book and a lot of fascinating new world-building. There's still so much mystery about the spirit side of Russia in this story, that I'm dying for more stories. I am very satisfied with how everything wrapped up.
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A Netgalley ARC copy was sent at my request for review. I felt I had to read and review the first and second books before this one, so I apologize that the wait for a review was prolonged well beyond the January publishing date. 

I had pleasant echoes Kathleen Gati's voice in words and names in this book after listening to "The Girl in the Tower" (does that ever happen to others?).

It's hard to finish reading a great series like this one, I have dreamed it and thought about how I would live within it, which is among the best of compliments I can give a story. It's now ended and I feel almost as heartbroken and yet satisfied as Vasya might have by the end of her journeys out of Moscow, into the Midnight house of her grandmother, saving Morozko (hints to her being winter queen/snow princess), going back to Moscow to save the city and her family from the priest Konstantin and the dead, and journeying to make deals between priests, princes and the magical world to turn a war. 

It seems she has to juggle the give and take of balance between tragedy and happy endings, magic ordinary, and chaos and order, summer and winter. The bitter and the sweet. 

I hope there is more yet unpublished or unwritten to read of this, for I would like to see more glimpses of a house by a lake with bird horses at midnight, or Morozko's house in winter, or journeys to where the Bear Medved roams. Or what Vasya may learn from her grandparents (ha, I was right!) and more besides. Perhaps a anthology, or Maria visiting?
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A lovely ending to the story begun in Bear & Nightingale and continued in Girl in the Tower.  Like all the best stories, it doesn't end quite as you might want it to, but it ends in the right way.  

And that's about all I can say without giving things away.  But the story is well-crafted, well-written, and it rings true. A beautiful weaving of old, new, myth and history.  Worth the read, and I look forward to reading it again in the future.
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The Winter of the Witch is the conclusion to Katherine Arden's stunningly good Winternight trilogy. Released 8th Jan 2019 by Random House on their Del Rey imprint, it's 384 pages and available in hardcover, paperback, ebook, and audio formats.

The richness and intricacy of this trilogy, and especially this installment can't possibly be overstated. This is a brilliantly written book full of lush imagery and interwoven within a framework of almost a thousand years of Russian folklore. It has gravitas. In quite a lot of ways it reminds me of truly iconic fantasies, Lord of the Rings, Earthsea, Amber, Melnibone, Dune, etc.

This is an epic coming-of-age fantasy but so much more. I love that the heroine Vasya is the captain of her own story. And through all the sacrifice and pain in this book, she's admirable and determined.

The author's facility with the written word is amazing. I spent a great percentage of my time reading this book in gob-smacked admiration with her writing. It also includes an extensive glossary as well as author's notes which provide a fascinating glimpse into her creative process and some of the real historical background frameworks upon which she wove the story.

Just a beautiful reading experience. I will be revisiting these again.

Five stars for both the book and the trilogy. Wonderful.
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A fantastic conclusion to this awesome and inventive trilogy. I appreciated how the story was handled and I liked seeing Vasya's growth as a character throughout the three books.
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This books amazingly blends real life history and Russian folklore and does so in a way where it is completely believable. I loved dipping into the world of mixed beliefs and seeing it develop the way it did and loved the magic that formed along the way.
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“The Winter of the Witch” is the third and final  installment of the “Winternight Trilogy”. I was so sad to see this series come to an end ( which led to me putting off reading it for quite some time) but this book was the perfect end. It was full of magic, beauty and so much more. The growth of the characters was wonderful. This book, like the others, transported me into another world. Filled with a perfect mix of history and fantasy, I will be singing the praises of this series for a long, long time. Wonderful job.

* Special thanks to NetGalley and the Publisher for allowing me to read an advance digital copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review*
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This was such a great wrap up of this story. I love how independent she ends up and it isn't just happily ever after. The book doesn't leave you wanting at all, as you feel her desires met and justice served.
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Absolutely loved. Amazing conclusion!
This series has everything from the beautiful writing to the wonderful characters. This final book felt exactly like that; the end of something great. No matter how heartbreaking it was to read the last line and say goodbye to the characters, I know they'll always be in my heart (and in my rereads because I will always come back to these books!).
I highly recommend this series. It's such a great blend of fantasy and historical fiction. It filled my every craving. The journey that began in book one is ended in a way I'm sure all fans will be happy with.
GO GO GO PICK IT UP!
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Katherine Arden completes her Winternight trilogy with The Winter of the Witch, a superb alternate history fantasy.  Vasilisa Petrovna, Vasya, involves herself in the affairs of the Russian Grand Prince of Moscovy, Dmitri, who is also her cousin; however, she has witch powers and contacts with the other world through the Winterking and other fantastic characters.  Escaping burning as a witch in Moscow, she has to find her own powers  and how to use them wisely.  Then she has to bring together the hidden spirits of Russia with the forces of the Grand Prince and defeat the Tartars while ensuring both Christian and spirit worlds can co exist.  Beautifully plotted with well rounded fantastic and historical characters. A must read for any fan of fantasy or folktale.
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The Winter of the Witch is a fabulous ending to this series. Katherine Arden knows how to draw you into the story. Her characters are great and so is the story. I love reading her books.
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This series is just spectacular. It really grabs the reader from the first book and sets you in a world that is fascinating. It is written so beautifully that I didn't want it to end.
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WHAT DID I THINK OF THE WINTER OF THE WITCH BY KATHERINE ARDEN?
The Winter Of The Witch by Katherine Arden is the final book in the Winternight Trilogy. And whoa is this story sent out with a bang. I LOVED IT. Okay, so the beginning of this book is just brimming with action. So, okay Moscow is facing illness and people are dying. The residents are pissed off and looking for someone to blame for their misfortune. Enter Vasya. She becomes a bit of a scapegoat. There’s a wild amount of action right in the beginning because of all this. And, ugh some serious heartbreak.

However, the ending kind of pulls everything together and makes all that we experienced worth it — especially the scene involving a certain animal character that we have all come to know and care about.

On the whole, I think that The Winter Of The Witch is a must read for fantasy lovers. Personally, I am already looking forward to re-reading this trilogy back to back in the deep of winter someday. I feel it was beautifully written, atmospheric, perfectly characterized. This trilogy definitely deserves a spot upon my shelves and I just cannot wait to come back to it and to see what Arden comes up with next.

HOW’S THE NARRATION?
The Winter Of The Witch audiobook is narrated by Kathleen Gati who has also narrated The Bear And The Nightingale and The Girl In The Tower. I liked that the trilogy had the same narrator throughout. Something that annoys me is when audiobook series have a change in narrators partway through. I also just really enjoyed Gati’s voice which is perfect for the story. She really guided my journey through these audiobooks. Also, just want to point out that I listened at 1.25x speed and that was quite ideal for the story. I definitely would recommend this whole trilogy in any form – audiobook, physical, or ebook. It’s just a damn good read.
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A wonderful conclusion to a trilogy that's been stellar from the start.

I found this installment to be a bit slower than the other two, especially in the first half when the magical and mundane realms are kept a bit too separate, but I was ultimately quite impressed with how Arden resolved things. All characters, even the minor ones, got the endings they deserved, good or bad or in between. Vasilisa Petrovna is truly one of my favorite fantasy heroines of recent years; she reminds me a bit of the leads from Robin McKinley's Damar books, except Russian! The balance of romance with strong and independent female power is also reminiscent of McKinley's work.

The depiction of the Battle of Kulikovo, an event to which the story was building from the start, felt a little too rushed to be an entirely effective battle scene, so I don't think this author is yet very strong as, say, an action or war novelist, but at this point I would probably read her grocery list and enjoy it.
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This is one of my favorite series. It was a perfect end to an already amazing trilogy. The characters are so real and breathtaking, the setting perfectly crafted, and the plotline so raw and beautiful. Everything about this book made my heart race - every turn of the (kindle) page was a new adventure. Totally recommend this absolute unique incredible fantasy retelling of a well-loved tale.
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I received this book in exchange for a honest review from NetGalley. 

I have loved all of the previous books in the Winternight Trilogy and when the chance to receive an ARC of this came up I jumped at it. This book was just as magical and hauntingly beautiful as the previous books. I love an historical fiction author who is fairly accurate and judicious with the history that they use. I love Russian history, Russian fairy-tales and strong female characters so Vasya and her story is a perfect fit for me. This is one of those series that when it ends you wish you could re-read it with no prior knowledge of the book because the experience of reading it for the first time was so magical and moving. I will likely re-read this series many times in my life but this first read through will always hold a special place for me.
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This final book rips right through you. I found myself forgetting to breathe, sobbing, wanting to cheer aloud. It's so RARE to have a finale end so well. Katherine Arden is an astonishly good writer.
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This is a series that got better as it went for me. The first book was a 3, the second around a 3.5 and this was a 4 or 4.25. I think that the characters needed time and exposure to grow on me and by the time I finished this, I was quite attached to some of them. I’m super excited to see where this author goes next!
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I loved this series so much. The writing is absolutely amazing and vivid. The story is great and the conclusion was awesome as well. I didn't think I was going to like this series because the first book was slow for me but man, did this wow me.
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