Book Review: A Mirror Mended by Alix E. Harrow

About the Book:

Title: A Mirror Mended

Author: Alix E. Harrow

Series: Fractured Fables

Page Length: 144

Publication Date: June 14, 2022


Synopsis: A Mirror Mended is the next installment in USA Today bestselling author Alix E. Harrow’s Fractured Fables series.

Zinnia Gray, professional fairy-tale fixer and lapsed Sleeping Beauty is over rescuing snoring princesses. Once you’ve rescued a dozen damsels and burned fifty spindles, once you’ve gotten drunk with twenty good fairies and made out with one too many members of the royal family, you start to wish some of these girls would just get a grip and try solving their own narrative issues.

Just when Zinnia’s beginning to think she can’t handle one more princess, she glances into a mirror and sees another face looking back at her: the shockingly gorgeous face of evil, asking for her help. Because there’s more than one person trapped in a story they didn’t choose. Snow White’s Evil Queen has found out how her story ends and she’s desperate for a better ending. She wants Zinnia to help her before it’s too late for everyone.

Will Zinnia accept the Queen’s poisonous request, and save them both from the hot iron shoes that wait for them, or will she try another path? 

LINKS:   Goodreads   |    Amazon   |  Book Depository

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My Review:

The second book in the Fractured Fables series, A Mirror Mended continues Zinnia’s journey as she tires of rescuing hapless damsels in distress. However, when she looks in the mirror and sees an evil queen, she must decide whether to help her. I am loving this series! It’s unique and immersive, and the writing is fantastic!

Zinnia is a dynamic protagonist. Funny and acerbic with a smidge of wisdom, she has a strong voice, and her journey, both physical and emotional, is compelling. All of the characters are dynamic and unique, and many are so different from what you’d expect. I think that’s one of the things I like most about this series. It makes you reexamine what you think you know about fairy tales.

I absolutely loved the comical and perceptive analysis of traditional fairy tales and societies’ willing and oblivious acceptance of some really twisted, gender-degrading stories. It made me wish I had taken similar college courses on the topic when I was in university. It was so eye-opening and yet not? I mean if you really examine canonized fairy tales like Cinderella, The Little Mermaid, and, of course, Sleeping Beauty, you can see quite clearly the oppressive, patriarchal settings and situations. I like that this book debunks all preconceived notions about the stories and characters.

Though it’s a relatively quick read, the story is layered and includes more serious issues, especially since Zinnia faces a terminal illness and knows her time is limited. The story is also filled with rich imagery, and the comparisons are fantastic! I love the author’s writing style and use of figurative language. “So I’ll just say it was bad. Like, if a snake f*#@ed a tarantula and their babies died in a tar pit, only to be reanimated by a necromancer who graduated at the absolute bottom of his class.” Not only is that a vivid visual, but it’s too funny! I love stories that entertain, make me laugh, and make me think, which is exactly what this story does.

I would definitely recommend this book and series to readers interested in YA fairy tale retellings. It’s sharp and funny and smart, and the writing is fantastic. Thanks to NetGalley and Tor for providing me with a copy of the book. All thoughts are my own.


Favorite Parts:

  • The writing.
  • The characters.

Favorite Lines:

You have to make the best of whatever story you were born into, and if your story happens to suck ass, well, maybe you can do some good before you go.

I hate being pitied, but twenty-six years of it have taught me how to wield it as a weapon—people who pity you tend to underestimate you.

We don’t all get to choose the parts we’re given to play.

It never occurred to me that the person you save might save you in turn. Perhaps survival is less solitary than I’d thought.


I would recommend reading A Spindle Splintered, the first book in the series, before reading this one.

11 thoughts on “Book Review: A Mirror Mended by Alix E. Harrow

  1. I still haven’t read the first book so I kinda skimmed this review but I’m glad to see you loved it 😍 Also, this cover is absolutely stunning?! I love all the details!

  2. I just finished Harrow’s The Once & Future Witches and loved it, so now I’m going to have to read this series of hers! Great review!

  3. I really liked the first one, this one, not as much. It was still good, but there were things that I had a hard time with. I’m glad you loved this one, Julie.

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