The Summer when it Snowed by K.A. Merikan

The year winter came back in the summer, Kirkor, the young son of a chieftain meets Alin, a man with eyes so blue they seem to melt the snow around him. That same night, Kirkor loses Alin to another man’s ruthless greed, but he is only a child, and no one believes his testimony. Years later, Kirkor is unjustly accused of plotting against the chieftain and banished from his home.

Roaming through the forest, he finds shelter under a lone weeping willow. There is nothing extraordinary about the tree, but if so, why does its whisper seem so familiar?

If you’ve read any of K.A. Merikan’s work, you know to expect something out of the ordinary, probably a little off the wall and possibly disturbing. I like all of those things. This story though? This story was different. It’s a beautifully written fairy tale and because it doesn’t really have any - WTF? classic Merikan moments - so, I could really see the beauty in the words. I definitely don’t mean to imply that anything I’ve read previously isn’t well written, not at all! I’m guessing I just didn’t appreciate it as much as I did here. Each turn of phrase used to describe the characters, the settings and their emotions added to the mood of the story.

Loosely based on classic Slavic folklore, The Summer When it Snowed gives the tale a twist that works perfectly for the MM fan. I really appreciated how both MC’s got to be heroes and it gave the characters equality regardless of the station in life they were born to. It’s a short tale that covers a lot of ground and a long period of time but never feels rushed or lacking, so they balance works really well. Kirkor and Alin have just enough “moments” to feel the connection they have. That fairytale connection, that’s all about tender swooning and heroic sacrifices.

This fairytale has a great villain, Balladyn, and I do love me a great villain. He literally has blood on his hands and is rotten to his evil little core. There is also the perfect selfish and chaotic spirit, I love those too, and she brings the story full circle. I actually love the veela’s character a lot because she’s above all the human hullabaloo and is all about the booty. I like her.

Speaking of a “veela”, definitely read the Foreword and the Glossary (don’t be afraid of the glossary words, you won’t be quizzed). I read them before and after and it brought more light to the story and it gave more meaning to the symbolism and to the beautiful cover art.

The Summer When it Snowed is a highly recommended escape to a beautiful world with dreamy tragic heroes. K.A. Merikan can really write a fairy tale and I’d love to read more of their interpretations of classic folklore.

*** a copy of this story was provided by the author for an honest review ***