Rose is the eldest of the two and has dark thick hair but cheeks the color of roses and “Tidy as a bow”. Snow has hair that is as white as snow and skin pale like snow and “Is a wild tangle”. They each had a garden that was made just for them. They each had dolls to play with and books to read. They each had lots of dresses. They each had a mother that would play and sing to and with them. They each had a father who would tell them about his adventures and who would tuck them into bed. Now they have no garden. Now they have no dolls to play with. Now they only have a small bookshelf. Now they only have a couple dresses each. Now they have a mother who is sad and still grieving. Now all they have left of their father is each of their own faint memories of him.
The girls and their mother have to move to a cottage in the woods. There they must cook and clean for themselves. They must fix leaks on their own and they must entertain themselves on their own. That is how Rose and Snow end up deep in the forest and find a library. But the library has no books and is infested with goats. They find an underground house that has music coming form it. They find tree roots that lead them to a mushroom farm and a boy named Ivo who warns them of the Menace of the Woods, who is known for causing many to disappear. They will help a cranky Little Man with backwards bending legs. They will also help a giant bear who is being pursued by the huntsman.
This book is a great retake on a little known Grimm fairytale and Emily Martin’s illustrations bring the book to life. The girls will grow stronger and closer than they ever were in this story.