My rating: 2 of 5 genies
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Retelling, Romance, Historical, Mystery, Magic
Published: March 1, 2008
Publisher: Scholastic Inc.
Source: Library Loan
Purchase At: TheBookDepository.com or Amazon.com
This ravishing winner of the ALA's William C. Morris YA Debut Award is a fairy tale, spun with a mystery, woven with a family story, and shot through with romance.
Charlotte Miller has always scoffed at talk of a curse on her family's woolen mill, which holds her beloved small town together. But after her father's death, the bad luck piles up: departing workers, impossible debts, an overbearing uncle. Then a stranger named Jack Spinner offers a tempting proposition: He can turn straw into gold thread, for the small price of her mother's ring. As Charlotte is drawn deeper into her bargains with Spinner-and a romance with the local banker-she must unravel the truth of the curse on the mill and save the community she's always called home.
I tried to get into this one, really hard actually, but the sentences just dragged endlessly and never seemed worth the effort. Bunce's knack for description is remarkable in the sense that she can make the very most elementary of things, complex. My experience with this book was very much like an essay; leaving me thinking it a very well written piece of prose, but not truly engaging. Not that every essay out there is as dry as card board, only that A Curse Dark as Gold could have been written for scholars with no business whatsoever bothering with escape literature. It was lengthy and thick in all the wrong ways and my senses were never engaged with the main character or the grief surrounding her.
I wanted to like it, and I understand that the plot truly does thicken once the main protagonist decides to do something; I just couldn't manage to keep myself motivated long enough for that moment to come. The two genies at the beginning of this rating are for the writing because I really do find it beautiful and Ms. Bunce has a talent for words.
But I warn you to pick this book up only if you are going on a trip you are certain will prove a very far journey. You may also read this if the library next door suddenly caught fire and by sheer luck this is the only piece of written literature to survive.
2 genies: I wanted to like this, I really did, but too much was left under-developed.
There was far more worse than good.