*This is a collection of stories based on the work of Lafcadio Hearn who moved to Japan in 1890 and married a Japanese woman, Setsu. He not only collected stories from her, but many folktales from villagers he met.
The art is really simple but gets the point across. It also reads really fast since some of the stories are so short; like a book of fairy tales you’d get for your kid. They don’t stick in your mind for very long but I can see this being very re-readable. 3.8 out of 5.
At the beginning of the modern age in Paris, young Prince Sebastian is being pressured by his parents to find a bride. But Sebastian is leading a double life: a prince by day and Lady Crystallia by night. But when a young dressmaker named Francis designs a scandalous dress for a client, Sebastian must have her create more marvelous frocks for him to wear about town as is alter ego. As Francis’ creations draw more attention in their own right, remaining a secret tailor is keeping her from her dream of being a famous designer.
With a fairy tale setup like this, you can likely guess the beats a story like this will hit. This book hits them all with heartwarming ease, allowing the reader to quickly relate to all the characters and enjoy the simple, flowing, and beautiful art. This is an adorable story about being true to yourself; be it your identity or your art. 4.5 stars.
Mairead is the keeper of the lighthouse now that her father has gone mad, her brothers are away at war, and her mother is gone. She has always watched the selkie dance on the shores even as a child but one night, Mairead catches the town idiot trying to steal a selkie’s skin. If you steal a selkie’s skin and hide it, you can keep the woman as your wife. Mairead is determined to keep the magnificent creatures safe.
At it’s core, this is a F/F romance with a fairy tale twist. It is quite steamy but lyrical and other-worldly. It was a quick read with Mairead being the oddball of her community searching for some direction in her life. For as short as it was, I did enjoy it. If you need a bit of saucy whimsy in your LGBT fiction, you could do a lot worse. 3.7 out of 5.