Snow White and the Huntsman by Lily Blake
|Snow White and the Huntsman by Lily Blake|
|Category: Confident Readers|
|Reviewer: John Lloyd|
|Summary: The novel of the film, which has none of the flash but still enough competence to make this a reasonable purchase.|
|Buy? Maybe||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 240||Date: June 2012|
|Publisher: Atom Books|
|External links: Author's website|
They say it's always best to read the book before watching the film, but what if they don't come in the usual order? This novelisation of the film Snow White and the Huntsman definitely comes after the screenplay, offering a second opportunity to look at the world and action of this Snow White, who, while experiencing the Dark Forest at the hands of a huntsman ridiculously called Eric, realises that to snatch the kingdom from her evil step-mum she has to get a bit feisty.
This is my first look, however, but I know enough of the film to do some compare and contrast, and enough about tween fantasy to rate it as a stand-alone. To begin, then, we're given a book in 23 chapters with at least two and a half blank pages in between each, so this takes not much longer than the film does to watch. The fact that Lily Blake (search for her full name on the cover in vain) keeps this concise and brief has plusses and minuses - she spends so little time establishing the dwarves they never get to be the embarrassingly bad comic relief they apparently are cinematically. But at the same time, mentioning the fact evil queen Ravenna felt wronged by the king she replaced is not enough to cover this important fact, even if this is done two or three times. Dare I say this is not a blow-by-blow recount of the film? It should perhaps be, as the end battle is more than a bit lame.
There's no attempt to match the individual, advert-friendly visual language of the film in the style used, but there is definitely enough in the way of description of people, places and events, and enough introduction of characters' intent, thought and attitudes. The fact Snow White is designed to fall for the greasy boozer Eric - sorry, THE HUNTSMAN, and does so in a very cheesy fashion is not Ms Blake's fault.
I'm left to guess that there are things left out and things a little unsatisfactory for the film's fans, but I can declare there is enough to make this a perfectly reasonable book. It sort of tends towards the younger teen audience by rote of having little to distinguish it for the older confident reader, but it's a harmless, entertaining PG-fantasy, and lacks nothing when shelved next to, say, Beast Quest. It's world is realised and defined in similar quality, and this can both be an advert for and reminder of Hollywood's version.
I must thank the kind Atom people for my review copy.
Invest in the fifteen of so books beginning with Fables: Legends in Exile - Vol 01 by Bill Willingham and you'll find yet another very different Snow White. And Snow White by Sally Gardner is more of a routine one for the youngsters.
You can read more book reviews or buy Snow White and the Huntsman by Lily Blake at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy Snow White and the Huntsman by Lily Blake at Amazon.com.
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