If you’ve never read a Christina Henry novel you really should. She takes classic fairy tales and re-imagines them in awesome ways. She has done takes on Peter Pan, Alice In Wonderland and last years great book The Mermaid. She is now back with a retelling of Little Red Riding Hood trying to make it to her Grandmother’s house set against something is destroying the world.
Red (full name Cordelia) is on her own in the woods on a quest to get to her Grandmother’s house, which is in a faraway part of the woods, isolated from everyone. The problem is she is on foot and one of her legs is prosthetic. A terrible airborne disease is killing people at a fast rate. The ones that have survived so far are in camps to try and keep them safe. Red and her family including her brother Adam and her parents have decided to avoid the camps and walk to Grandmas. They can’t drive because of finding gas and military patrols rounding people up and bad people killing and looting.
Right before they are to leave Red’s mother gets the sickness and her parents tell the kids to go. Her father isn’t going to leave their mother alone. Adam and Red take off and although they argue a lot keep moving. They stop at small towns and look for more supplies as they go along. In one town they are caught by the military. Red soon figures out there’s more going on than an airborne virus. They have seen dead people with large holes in their chests. The military guys refuse to tell them much. As they are about to be blood tested and most likely taken to a camp, the bad guys show up and a showdown happens.
Red is able to get away and runs into two children in the woods. Together they travel together finding a nice man who is well hidden and stocked in his house. There are patrols in the area and Red is determined to find out what is going on once and for all. What she finds puts her life in jeopardy with a shocking discovery that could keep her from ever making it to her Grandmother’s house.
The story is told in before and after formats so we see the start of the story and present day and what has happened and what is happening. Red is determined, stubborn and very strong female character. Author Christina Henry excels with these stories. Her knowledge of the stories and her unique twists make these stories so enjoyable to read. If you get a chance pick up The Mermaid as well to read. These are perfect summer reads. I didn’t read the ones before these two but I am sure they are just as great! I can’t wait to see what she comes up with next year.
You can pick up The Girl In Red in stores on Tuesday, June 18th from Berkley Trade.
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