DNF: Thistle Down by Irene Radford

Thistle Down by Irene Radford How did I get it: A review copy was sent to me courtesy of Berkley/NAL/Penguin Books. Thistle Down comes out on June 7th.

Why did I get it: I tend to love stories about faeries and when I heard about this book, I really wanted to read it.

How I would rate it:  DNF – I did not finish the book.


Dusty Carrick lived in the small town of Skene Falls, Oregon, her entire life. And, like many of the local children, she played with “imaginary” Pixie friends in Ten Acre Woods.

But the Pixies are not imaginary at all, and Ten Acre Woods is their home. Now, the woods are in danger, and if it falls, the Pixies too will die. Only Thistle Down, exiled from her tribe and trapped inside a mortal woman’s body, can save her people-as long as she can convince Dusty Carrick to help her before it’s too late

Review: I tried and tried to motivate myself to keep going, but around page 124, I just knew I had to throw in the towel. Which is kind of sad seeing as the book is only 296 pages long.

The Pixies were interesting in the way faeries always are, of course. I liked Thistle being out of her element and still trying to make things work by helping humans she knew as children or those she didn’t. The details about Pixies customs and that their woods were in trouble were nice enough, but I sort of wish more had been made of their being there or at least that some significance had been attached to the existence of faeries in this fictional world. Instead the Pixies were of little negative or positive benefit to the humans who somehow can see and play with them well into their tweens before deciding they simply don’t exist.

The human characters –good or bad– were pretty selfish, wooden, and two-dimensional. The scenes of their childhood were particularly irritating and riddled with clichés. They didn’t seem to know anything about themselves or the people they had grown up around either. I wouldn’t have believed in their connections, friendships, crushes, dreams, goals, or even feuds if the book hadn’t tell me what those were.

Even the basic plot of the book didn’t really work for me because I just could not believe Thistle would put up with these people let alone care about them. Dusty was too preoccupied on a bully she dealt with as a kid to build friendships or relationships or talk to Chase who she loves, Dick was in love with Thistle but couldn’t tell her, Chase was in love with Dusty but can’t get her to talk to him because of her tragic back story, and Phelma Jo was evil and wanted to destroy the woods as well as the woman she used to beat up as a kid. I couldn’t figure out who I was supposed to like and I just could not have cared less about any of these fictional people.

In conclusion, color me disappointed. I honestly wish I could have found anything remotely worth continuing for, but nothing in the first 124 pages of Thistle Down worked for me. I plan on moving on to other books about fairies that look more promising like Dead on the Delta by Stacey Jay or other October Daye books by Seanan McGuire.


About April

I'm a librarian, reader, and writer whose main goal in life is to be able to swim in books the way Scrooge McDuck swims in money. Although my reading choices will always be wildly eclectic and I never plan on leaving any genre unexplored, my favorite reads tend to be Fantasy, Young Adult, Science Fiction, Gay Romance, or Historical Fiction. You can e-mail me at inspector[dot]librarian[at]gmail[dot]com.
This entry was posted in DNF, Review, Review Copy and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to DNF: Thistle Down by Irene Radford

  1. Pingback: Reader’s Progress #23 | CSI: Librarian

  2. So sorry to hear you couldn’t finish this one. It does sound really good. Thanks for the honest review though. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s