Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Thorn and the Blossom: A Two-Sided Love Story by Theodora Goss

The Thorn and the Blossom: A Two-Sided Love Story by Theodora Goss.
Publisher: Quirk Books.
Pages: 82.
Source: Publisher.
One enchanting romance. Two lovers keeping secrets. And a uniquely crafted book that binds their stories forever. When Evelyn Morgan walked into the village bookstore, she didn’t know she would meet the love of her life. When Brendan Thorne handed her a medieval romance, he didn’t know it would change the course of his future. It was almost as if they were the cursed lovers in the old book itself . . .

The Thorn and the Blossom is a remarkable literary artifact: You can open the book in either direction to decide whether you’ll first read Brendan’s, or Evelyn’s account of the mysterious love affair. Choose a side, read it like a regular novel—and when you get to the end, you’ll find yourself at a whole new beginning.

First off, I have to comment on how ridiculously awesome the packaging of this book is. The same book from another character's point of view is kind of rare, and if there is such a companion novel, we usually have to wait a few years for it. So to the same story in the point of views of both main characters simply by flipping it over was pretty convenient.

This review will be fairly short since this is more of a novella than a novel, but I did enjoy Brendan and Evelyn's short story of how their relationship fairs against time, moreso Brendan's side than Evelyn. I feel like his personality was a lot bigger than Evelyn's, and he was a lot more optimistic toward the end and optimism is really what was needed for this novella's closure. I think I would've loved this book a lot more had I not gone into it with expectations. From the synopsis and images in the inside, I thought I had the plot pegged but it was nothing like what I had predicted and I was a bit disappointed with that. But I still slid the book back into the sleeve feeling satisifed. It was a quick read, but it was simple, engaging and romantic.

Overall, The Thorn and the Blossom was definitely a unique reading experience. I enjoyed Brendan and Evelyn's relationship and I loved that so much of the book was based around Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. And getting into the heads of both characters as they tell the same story was an unfamiliar feeling, but it was really insightful and cool. I can only hope that more authors/publishers take notice of this creative way to bind a book and jump on the bandwagon; I'd love to read more novels like this! If you're craving something quick and romantic, I definitely recommend The Thorn and the Blossom, but if you ask me, it's also worth checking out for it's awesome binding!

Other reviews for The Thorn and the Blossom:
Misfit Salon.
Bending The Spine.


  1. Wow, what a unique book! I will be checking this out. :)

  2. I'll admit it. I'm a sucker for a pretty book. I am willing to check it out for it's binding alone - HOWEVER the two points of view (with immediate gratification, as you pointed out) in a novella setting sound completely fantastic.

  3. Interesting that you preferred Brendan as I thought Evelyn's story worked better and I'm glad I started with hers. Still I enjoyed the unique formatting and it was a pleasant read.