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Katherine Arden

Autor(a) de The Bear and the Nightingale

13+ Works 10,199 Membros 612 Reviews 11 Favorited

About the Author

Katherine Arden is an American writer, born in Austin, Texas. She graduated from Middlebury College in 2011 with degrees in French and Russian. Before becoming a writer, she worked on a farm in Hawaii and as a teaching assistant at a boarding school in the French Alps. Her first book was published mostrar mais in 2017, The Bear and the Nightingale. Her other books include The Girl in the Tower, The Winter of the Witch, and Small Spaces. mostrar menos

Includes the name: Arden Katherine


Obras de Katherine Arden

Associated Works

Twice Cursed: An Anthology (2023) — Contribuinte — 54 cópias


(92) 2017 (41) 2018 (45) 2019 (71) 2021 (44) audiobook (59) ebook (111) fairy tale (79) fairy tales (243) fantasy (1,073) favorites (66) female protagonist (35) fiction (555) folklore (178) ghosts (51) goodreads (51) historical (76) historical fantasy (142) historical fiction (194) horror (134) Kindle (99) magic (130) magical realism (40) middle grade (68) read (109) read in 2017 (34) read in 2019 (45) Russia (415) Russian (37) Russian folklore (65) series (93) sff (53) signed (38) supernatural (34) to-read (1,517) winter (38) Winternight (42) Winternight Trilogy (37) YA (70) young adult (88)

Conhecimento Comum

Outros nomes
Burdine, Katherine Arden
Data de nascimento
Local de nascimento
Austin, Texas, USA
Locais de residência
Moscow, Russia
Vermont, USA
French Alps
Middlebury College
teaching assistant
Paul Lucas
Pequena biografia
Born in Austin, Texas, Katherine Arden spent her junior year of high school in Rennes, France.

Following her acceptance to Middlebury College in Vermont, she deferred enrolment for a year in order to live and study in Moscow. At Middlebury, she specialized in French and Russian literature.

After receiving her BA, she moved to Maui, Hawaii, working every kind of odd job imaginable, from grant writing and making crêpes to serving as a personal tour guide. After a year on the island, she moved to Briançon, France, and spent nine months teaching. She then returned to Maui, stayed for nearly a year, then left again to wander. Currently she lives in Vermont, but really, you never know.

She is the author of The Bear and the Nightingale.



You're not seeing things, what follows is a review of an historical fiction novel set during WWI. I know I've said that I'm - mostly - on a break from WWI and WWII historical fiction, however such is the power of Katherine Arden that I made an exception.

Last year I reviewed The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden and fell in love with the writing style of this YA urban fantasy / historical fiction series. The Bear and the Nightingale earned a glowing 5 star review and I'm still looking forward to reading the next book in the Winternight trilogy The Girl In The Tower. Therefore I was surprised to see the author pop up in a publisher's catalogue with an adult title The Warm Hands of Ghosts. Seeing it was an historical fiction novel set in WWI, I was keen to see how - or if - the author would bring her love of Russian myths and legends and sense of 'other' to a bloody war and now I have my answer.

I shared this back story because I didn't know what to expect - other than great writing - reading The Warm Hands of Ghosts by Katherine Arden. It's quite possible that if I'd known just how dark the book was going to be, I might not have requested it for review. Having said that, going in blind was the best approach for me and I'm glad I read it.

Laura Iven is a Canadian nurse providing medical care to the soldiers on the Western Front during WWI when she is injured during the bombing of a hospital, discharged and sent back home to Halifax in Canada to recover.

The snappy writing and depth of character was immediately present in the author's writing. Here's one of my favourite observations by Laura:

"Laura tried not to look cynical. Pim appeared simultaneously flattered, delighted to make his acquaintance, and innocently unavailable. She'd probably practiced that expression in a mirror." Page 91

Laura's brother Wilfred (Freddie) is a soldier serving in Belgium and after receiving contradictory news and fearing he might be missing, she risks another deployment and travels back to Belgium in search of him. Volunteering at a private hospital in Flanders, Laura and her colleagues struggle to stay on their feet working for days without rest in the gruelling conditions. Laura speaks to the men as she tends to their wounds and starts to hear strange stories about the Fiddler.

The novel is set in alternate chapters with Laura in present day January 1918 and Freddie's point of view from several months earlier enabling the reader to discover what happens to him. Incorporating elements of the Halifax Harbour explosion from history was a refreshing angle I hadn't come across in WWI literature and it was interesting to learn more about this disaster from the character's perspective.

Laura's brother was named Wilfred in the novel and every time I saw his name on the page I reacted with 'oh, I thought that was going to read Wilfred Owen.' I studied the works of WWI poets Wilfred Owen, Siegfried Sassoon and Robert Graves in a War Literature course at University so I felt rewarded when I noted the following in the Afterword:

"Her brother's name, Wilfred, is a hat-tip both to Ivanhoe and to Wilfred Owen, whose poem "Strange Meeting" was the starting point for Freddie's story." Afterword, Page 378

What a terrific tribute to the poet and for those interested, you can read Wilfred's short poem Strange Meeting in full on the Poetry Foundation website.

The Warm Hands of Ghosts by Katherine Arden is difficult to read at times. It's brutal and graphic yet also tender and achingly beautiful while accurately conveying the destruction and hopelessness of war without flinching away from the horror. Reading this in the lead up to ANZAC Day enhanced my sense of gravitas while reading but the kiss at the end was one step too far for me.

Highly recommended for experienced readers of WWI historical fiction with a strong stomach looking for a new story that stands apart from the rest. Not sure? Visit my blog for a link to a FREE extract https://www.carpelibrum.net/2024/05/review-warm-hands-ghosts-katherine-arden.htm...

* Copy courtesy of Penguin Random House *
… (mais)
Carpe_Librum | outras 15 resenhas | May 7, 2024 |
Love the idea that ghosts have warm hands. Such a beautiful thought…
Freddie is a soldier during World War I. One fateful day, during a horrific battle, he ends up trapped under an overturned pillbox with a German soldier called Winter.
Somehow, they manage to escape and a very strong bond between them emerges.
During their struggle to evade other soldiers, they encounter Faland the fiddler, who is most certainly not who he seems. Winter spots him straight away, but Freddie falls head first into his trap.
We then meet Laura, Freddie’s sister, who is sure Freddie is not dead, as she was suspiciously told. Laura, being a front line nurse, heads out to The No Man’s Zone to try and find out what happened to his beloved brother.
This is an absolute gem of a book. You can feel the cold, the despair, the love, the longing and the horrors that World War I brought to humankind. Beautifully told, you can truly feel yourself standing there, on the dark battlefield with Freddie and Winter.
Absolutely loved it.
… (mais)
1 vote
AleAleta | outras 15 resenhas | Apr 27, 2024 |
Katherine Arden is a consummate storyteller who makes the writing appear so effortless, and yet my own words fail me when it comes to doing this novel justice. This is an extraordinary book, imbued with an enormous sense of compassion and humanity in spite of the horrors surrounding the characters, both at home in Canada and abroad; in one of the most poignant moments even the fiddler – a person to whom people are drawn and who is feared in equal measure – is briefly shown with his vulnerability exposed. Highly recommended.… (mais)
1 vote
passion4reading | outras 15 resenhas | Apr 26, 2024 |
A young Canadian nurse, wounded out of WWI service and orphaned by the explosion in Halifax harbor, relieves her brother's effects. Because two tags are returned and he is reported missing, she knows that information is being withheld. Her brother is experiencing the entire hell of war and then some, as we follow his viewpoint in tandem. The grim toll of war saturates this book, so it is the characters and their involvement that provide motive through the chapters of this Tam-Lin adjacent story. A new dark mythos for the dark age ushered in by mass warfare.… (mais)
1 vote
quondame | outras 15 resenhas | Apr 15, 2024 |


2010s (4)


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