Deathless by Catherynne M. Valente
Catherynne M. Valente’s Deathless is a sprawling and visceral tale that expertly weaves Russian mythology and history together in a seamless manner. Valente’s writing is, quite simply, captivating and lush, and she evokes a perfectly grim and almost suffocating atmosphere. Marya Morevna’s transformation from a wild-eyed girl to the bride of Koschei the Deathless is fascinating to watch, if a little confusing at times. And while the romance is light, I still enjoyed seeing how Marya and Koschei start as strangers and grow into something more. Overall, while readers might want to brush up on their history to better understand the novel’s backdrop, Deathless is an imaginative must-read.