Trigger Warning: This novel and review discuss the following: apocalypse, illness, life-threatening situations, death.
Goodreads Rating: 4 Stars
A Grimms Fairy-tale meets Sci-fi dystopian, Christina Henry’s The Girl in Red is a twisted take on Little Red Riding Hood. It’s rivoting, fast pace will keep you hooked to see if Cordelia, aka “Red”, will make it to her grandmother’s house some 300 miles away from home.
Like I said, this is the twisted version, so there’s a lot of differences from the classic story. In this retelling, Red has been preparing for a mass outbreak only known as “the cough”, which affected the lungs of those infected and caused certain death. Red has cautioned her family on the progression of it’s reach, and when it feels like to late, her parents and brother Adam decide to take heed. They plan to evacuate on foot – for reasons explained in the novel- and travel to their grandmother’s remote cabin. Despite it’s distance, it’s the best chance they have at survival, but Red’s family is most concerned for Red, as she is an amputee- a leg lost to a horrific accident.
On the day Red’s family attempts to evacuate, the worst happens, and Red is forced to separate from her parents. As she journeys on foot with her brother, they discover something else about “the cough”, something that the media didn’t relay before most of the country’s electrical blackout.
In a dual timeline narrated by Red as “before” and “after”, the plot twists unfold. Henry captivates her audience with a familiar plot, but adds her own elements to create a whole new level of fear and danger for characters and readers alike. Creating a tough, strong, but realistic female lead character who wields an axe, to a horrific medical outbreak that seems to be evolving, Henry lets her imagination run wild and gives readers a new view on why Little Red Riding Hood is a classic tale of caution.
If you love modern retellings, you have to add this one to your must read list.
Published: June 18, 2019
Publisher: Berkley Publishing Group
TL/DR: The Girl in Red by Christina Henry is a dystopian retelling of Little Red Riding Hood
Read it? YES. Despite it’s 300 pages, it’s fast paced and entertaining.
Recommend it? Yes.
Buy it? Definitely. If you’re a fan of dystopian, post-apacolypitc, or science fiction novels and the old fairy tale, this is a great purchase.
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