To Bleed A Crystal Bloom by Sarah A. Parker Book Review
Updated: Sep 13
Title: To Bleed A Crystal Bloom
Author: Sarah A. Parker
Genre: Adult, Dark Fantasy, Romance, Retellings > Rapunzel
Release Date: July 24, 2021
Rating: ★★★★★ (5/5)
Description: "What a pretty flower to keep locked in a big, rocky tower."
Nineteen years ago, I was plucked from the heart of a bloody massacre that spared nobody else.
Now ward to a powerful High Master who knows too much and says too little, I lead a simple life, never straying from the confines of an imaginary line I've drawn around the castle grounds.
Stay within. Never leave.
Out there, the monsters lurk. Inside, I'm safe ... though at a cost far greater than the blood I drip into a goblet daily.
Toxic, unreciprocated love for a man who's utterly unavailable.
My savior. My protector.
My almost executioner.
I can't help but be enamored with the arcane man who holds the power to pull my roots from the ground.
When voracious beasts spill across the land and threaten to fray the fabric of my tailored existence, the petals of reality will peel back to reveal an ugly truth. But in a castle puddled with secrets, none are greater than the one I've kept from myself.
No tower is tall enough to protect me from the horror that tore my life to shreds.
(Trigger Warnings: Violence, Gore, Murder, PTSD)
I would like to thank Turn The Page Tours for providing me with my copy.
To Bleed A Crystal Bloom by Sarah A. Parker is the epitome of a dark retelling, in this case of Rapunzel. It is a shadowy tale far removed from the source material and other adaptions like those conjured by Disney. Sarah A. Parker took a conventionally told tale and sprinkled inky blackness across it to add depth that wasn't there before. The familiarity we are all comforted by is corrupted at the author's hands in the best sense.
The book is set in a richly developed world that is built through layers upon layers of immaculate intrigue. Mastering the art of a riveting fantasy is something the author need not worry about - she accomplishes it here. Nothing in the book, from the world to the characters, feels like it is hurried or rushed at the last minute. Every tiny detail appears purposeful from the author's expert hand.
If there is a definition for a slow burn romance, there is a reference to To Bleed A Crystal Bloom included somewhere. There's a brimming chemistry even in the darkest of times that blossoms with every new chapter. At the start, it is only a wisp of an idea but later on, it naturally surpasses that concept. Sarah A. Parker interlaces vulnerability and strength hand-in-hand with the relationship before us like walking a delicate tightrope.