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A YA historical fantasy set in nineteenth-century Denmark, where secrets can kill and magic is a deadly gift. For Marit Olsen, magic is all about strategy: it flows freely through her blood, but every use leaves behind a deadly, ice-like build-up within her veins called the Firn. Marit knows how dangerous it is to let too much Firn build up—after all, it killed her sister—a A YA historical fantasy set in nineteenth-century Denmark, where secrets can kill and magic is a deadly gift. For Marit Olsen, magic is all about strategy: it flows freely through her blood, but every use leaves behind a deadly, ice-like build-up within her veins called the Firn. Marit knows how dangerous it is to let too much Firn build up—after all, it killed her sister—and she has vowed never to use her thread magic. But when Eve, a fellow orphan whom Marit views like a little sister, is adopted by the wealthy Helene Vestergaard, Marit will do anything to stay by Eve’s side. She decides to risk the Firn and uses magic to secure a job as a seamstress in the Vestergaard household. But Marit has a second, hidden agenda: her father died while working in the Vestergaards’ jewel mines—and it might not have been an accident. The closer Marit gets to the truth about the Vestergaard family, the more she realizes she and everyone she’s come to love are in danger. When she finds herself in the middle of a treacherous deception that goes all the way up to the king of Denmark, magic may be the only thing that can save her—if it doesn’t kill her first.


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A YA historical fantasy set in nineteenth-century Denmark, where secrets can kill and magic is a deadly gift. For Marit Olsen, magic is all about strategy: it flows freely through her blood, but every use leaves behind a deadly, ice-like build-up within her veins called the Firn. Marit knows how dangerous it is to let too much Firn build up—after all, it killed her sister—a A YA historical fantasy set in nineteenth-century Denmark, where secrets can kill and magic is a deadly gift. For Marit Olsen, magic is all about strategy: it flows freely through her blood, but every use leaves behind a deadly, ice-like build-up within her veins called the Firn. Marit knows how dangerous it is to let too much Firn build up—after all, it killed her sister—and she has vowed never to use her thread magic. But when Eve, a fellow orphan whom Marit views like a little sister, is adopted by the wealthy Helene Vestergaard, Marit will do anything to stay by Eve’s side. She decides to risk the Firn and uses magic to secure a job as a seamstress in the Vestergaard household. But Marit has a second, hidden agenda: her father died while working in the Vestergaards’ jewel mines—and it might not have been an accident. The closer Marit gets to the truth about the Vestergaard family, the more she realizes she and everyone she’s come to love are in danger. When she finds herself in the middle of a treacherous deception that goes all the way up to the king of Denmark, magic may be the only thing that can save her—if it doesn’t kill her first.

30 review for Splinters of Scarlet

  1. 5 out of 5

    Kayla

    I loved Emily Bain Murphy's debut, The Disappearances, so I was super excited to find out she had another book in the works. Full disclosure, Emily is one of my very best friends—but my love for her first book was one of the things that made me want to *become* good friends with her. I had the joy of seeing an early version of Splinters of Scarlet and of watching Emily diligently work for years at chiseling away and refining it—when I finally got my hands on the ARC to read the product of all he I loved Emily Bain Murphy's debut, The Disappearances, so I was super excited to find out she had another book in the works. Full disclosure, Emily is one of my very best friends—but my love for her first book was one of the things that made me want to *become* good friends with her. I had the joy of seeing an early version of Splinters of Scarlet and of watching Emily diligently work for years at chiseling away and refining it—when I finally got my hands on the ARC to read the product of all her hard work, it was absolutely worth the wait. It's the most excellent combination of ballet + jewels + magic + mystery + secrets + Denmark, every bit the "Downton Abbey meets Frozen" mashup I'd hoped it would be, and I'm so excited for the world to finally be able to get their hands on it. I hope you'll love Marit and this magical, sparkling world as much as I did!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Allison

    2.5/5 I feel so weird about having an unpopular opinion about this book, but I just didn't like it. It was just so boring and average, and there was nothing in this book that kept me compelled to read even more. The entire book follows a girl named Marit who is attempting to solve the murder mystery of how her father and the hundreds of people working in the mines were killed. Throughout the story, she gets closer and closer to the Vestergaard family, whom she suspects. I feel like this concept c 2.5/5 I feel so weird about having an unpopular opinion about this book, but I just didn't like it. It was just so boring and average, and there was nothing in this book that kept me compelled to read even more. The entire book follows a girl named Marit who is attempting to solve the murder mystery of how her father and the hundreds of people working in the mines were killed. Throughout the story, she gets closer and closer to the Vestergaard family, whom she suspects. I feel like this concept could be interesting in theory, but it just didn't appeal to me at all. I actually found the reveal to be quite interesting, but the 300 pages or so it took to get there was just lackluster. The characters in the book also didn't have anything about them that kept me rooting for them. I didn't really care for the romance, and everyone else was just so forgettable. I'm also just going to talk about the ending here in this spoiler, because the ending of the book was actually decent, until we got to this part, which just annoyed me. (view spoiler)[The main character, Marit, has the Firn (which is a deadly disease that kills people who have used too much magic. Except, surprise, she survives! Everything is all happy, and she lives happily ever after with Jakob. But why did she *happen* to survive when everyone else before her died? I feel like that entire plotpoint was done to maintain the happy ending of the story, when it would have been more dramatic if she died. I feel like this could have been a character death that made sense and I don't know, I'm just not a fan of people coming back to life. (hide spoiler)] I am still rating this book a 2.5/5 because it interested me enough to not DNF it. It wasn't necessarily a bad book, but it wasn't a good one either. I was kind of interested in seeing what happened, but it's not something I will remember a couple weeks from now. This book could definitely work for the right audience (and I've seen plenty of 4-5 star reviews), but it just wasn't for me. Still, if you like the sound of it, I'd read the first 30 pages or so and see if it intrigues you!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Katerina *Grrrumpy Kat* Kondrenko

    7 out of 10 Not sure why this read didn't turn out to be as awesome as The Disappearances. It's a unique and magical story, with touching moments, kind messages, a beautiful atmosphere, but we didn't click. However, I'd recommend it to anyone who loves creative concepts (here, we if you use magic you can die from a mysterious illness), unusual settings (Denmark), character depth, fast pacing, grey moral, and such. This book is similar to its predecessor, in many ways from characters and how t 7 out of 10 Not sure why this read didn't turn out to be as awesome as The Disappearances. It's a unique and magical story, with touching moments, kind messages, a beautiful atmosphere, but we didn't click. However, I'd recommend it to anyone who loves creative concepts (here, we if you use magic you can die from a mysterious illness), unusual settings (Denmark), character depth, fast pacing, grey moral, and such. This book is similar to its predecessor, in many ways from characters and how they act to twists and plot structure. If I read this story first, my emotions might be different, and The Disappearances instead of Splinters of Scarlet might feel derivative. Still, this one is a solid read and you can pick it up expecting the best.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Permanently_Booked

    “Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale.” Murphy you have a new fan. I have to admit that the cover is what drew me in. Didn’t even look at the synopsis just saw the magical words “YA Historical fiction” and knew I wanted to read this beauty. This was everything I needed it to be. In Denmark in the 19th century magic is seen as an infliction. As magic is used it leaves behind an ice-like build-up in the veins called the Firn. After the loss of her father and sister, Marit befriends Eve at t “Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale.” Murphy you have a new fan. I have to admit that the cover is what drew me in. Didn’t even look at the synopsis just saw the magical words “YA Historical fiction” and knew I wanted to read this beauty. This was everything I needed it to be. In Denmark in the 19th century magic is seen as an infliction. As magic is used it leaves behind an ice-like build-up in the veins called the Firn. After the loss of her father and sister, Marit befriends Eve at the orphanage who becomes like a sister to her. Hiding her abilities from Eve she does everything in her power to find Eve a forever home until one day the Vestergaard family adopts little Eve. There’s only one problem, her family is dead because of the Vestergaards. This was such an intoxicating read. There is mystery, history, magic and connection that sucks you in and when you finally come up to breathe you just want to relive it all over again. Marit has a tragic past like most orphans we meet in YA reads. I liked how her past is what drives the mystery behind the Vestergaards. She has a well-crafted MC mold with a flawed and closed off persona that blossoms as she finds her place in life. Murphy did a wonderful job fleshing out each of the characters (even the miniscule ones) to the point you feel as if you have known them all for eternity. The world building is set in 19th century Denmark and you can easily imagine yourself walking the dilapidated streets of the poor and the avenues for the wealthy. The magic system ties in to the location and war wrought era. It’s a simple magic that is easy to follow. Only towards the end did I question a few things but it all still fits. I highly recommend this read to individuals who enjoy young adult novels with a bit of magic and mystery tied into historical fiction. Thank you Emily Bain Murphy and HMH Books for Young Readers for the ability to read and review this novel for an honest and unbiased opinion. True rating 4.5/5, rounded for Goodreads.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Tabi⁷ (ᕗツ)ᕗ

    I keep thinking this is The Madness Blooms because the covers look the same ahaha I keep thinking this is The Madness Blooms because the covers look the same ahaha

  6. 5 out of 5

    Kulwinder Singh

    “𝙄 𝙡𝙞𝙠𝙚 𝙜𝙡𝙖𝙨𝙨 𝙗𝙚𝙨𝙩. 𝙂𝙡𝙖𝙨𝙨 𝙞𝙨 𝙛𝙧𝙖𝙜𝙞𝙡𝙚 𝙗𝙪𝙩 𝙨𝙩𝙧𝙤𝙣𝙜. 𝙄𝙩 𝙖𝙡𝙡𝙤𝙬𝙨 𝙪𝙨 𝙩𝙤 𝙨𝙚𝙚 𝙩𝙝𝙧𝙤𝙪𝙜𝙝 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙬𝙖𝙡𝙡𝙨 𝙬𝙚’𝙫𝙚 𝙗𝙪𝙞𝙡𝙩 𝙖𝙧𝙤𝙪𝙣𝙙 𝙪𝙨. 𝙄𝙩 𝙣𝙚𝙫𝙚𝙧 𝙘𝙖𝙡𝙡𝙨 𝙖𝙩𝙩𝙚𝙣𝙩𝙞𝙤𝙣 𝙩𝙤 𝙞𝙩𝙨𝙚𝙡𝙛 𝙗𝙪𝙩 𝙖𝙡𝙬𝙖𝙮𝙨 𝙩𝙤 𝙬𝙝𝙖𝙩’𝙨 𝙗𝙚𝙮𝙤𝙣𝙙 𝙞𝙩. 𝙄𝙩 𝙘𝙖𝙣 𝙥𝙧𝙤𝙩𝙚𝙘𝙩 𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙣𝙜𝙨 𝙛𝙧𝙤𝙢 𝙙𝙖𝙢𝙖𝙜𝙚. 𝘼𝙣𝙙 𝙮𝙚𝙩, 𝙬𝙝𝙚𝙣 𝙮𝙤𝙪 𝙖𝙧𝙚𝙣’𝙩 𝙘𝙖𝙧𝙚𝙛𝙪𝙡 𝙬𝙞𝙩𝙝 𝙞𝙩, 𝙬𝙖𝙩𝙘𝙝 𝙤𝙪𝙩.” I loved the mystery aspect of this book and the setting. Everything else... not so much. RTC

  7. 4 out of 5

    H.S.J. Williams

    Absolutely gorgeous. Also, best food descriptions I’ve read in a while. So long as one can stomach a pretty intense and violent climax, I recommend this to basically everyone. Full review to come soon!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Ashleigh

    I received an e-arc of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review* I don’t even know where to start. I feel like my words have left me. This book was absolutely AMAZING! Emily Bain Murphy captivated me from the very first page. I love the setting which is 19th Century Denmark. The way that Emily described everything, it felt so tangible. The imagery is so lush and vivid. The main character of the story is Marit Olsen, and I head over heels fell in love with her. I could definitely I received an e-arc of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review* I don’t even know where to start. I feel like my words have left me. This book was absolutely AMAZING! Emily Bain Murphy captivated me from the very first page. I love the setting which is 19th Century Denmark. The way that Emily described everything, it felt so tangible. The imagery is so lush and vivid. The main character of the story is Marit Olsen, and I head over heels fell in love with her. I could definitely see myself being her BFF, she’s such a kindred spirit. Marit was born with magic. Magic flows through her blood, but if she uses it, there’s a deadly ice build-up in her veins, called the Firn. She has vowed not to use it, as it killed her sister. Marit’s father also died in the Vestergaard family’s jewel mines and she is left an orphan. In the orphanage, she meets Eve who becomes like a sister to her. I loved the relationship between Marit and Eve. Their bond is so strong, and so pure. Marit is fiercely devoted to Eve. When Eve is adopted by the very wealthy Helen Vestergaard, Marit pulls out all the stops to stay by Eve’s side. Marit also secretly wants to go with Eve to find out what happened in the mine accident that killed her father. Helene brings Marit home with her and Eve as a servant. Helene begins to tutor Eve in ballet, as Eve had shown promise at the orphanage. I loved meeting all of the characters that live in the Vestergaard home and getting to know their distinct personalities. They very much reminded me of the blurb that compares this story to Downton Abbey meets Frozen. Marit begins to develop relationships with the people that she is living and working with. A romance also evolves between a couple of the characters. As the story goes on though, Marit starts getting closer to truth of what happened in the mines, and everyone she loves is in danger. Marit soon discovers that magic may be the only thing that can save her. If you love stories about sisterhood, magic, mystery, ballet, beautiful gowns, jewels, historical settings, and romance, then this story is for you. Please do yourself a favor and add this beautiful book to your TBR. It is available at retailers for preorder now and you can also request it from your local library.

  9. 5 out of 5

    The Nerd Daily

    Originally published on The Nerd Daily | Review by Laura Erne Splinters of Scarlet is the latest standalone from Emily Bain Murphy and many have deemed it ‘Downton Abbey with magic’ and you know what? That’s pretty accurate. This book has a vast array of characters that showcase the upstairs/downstairs divide commonly found in the 19th and early 20th centuries. This is a story that focuses on Marit Olsen, an orphan with a magical ability that allows her to excel as a seamstress. This isn’t a stor Originally published on The Nerd Daily | Review by Laura Erne Splinters of Scarlet is the latest standalone from Emily Bain Murphy and many have deemed it ‘Downton Abbey with magic’ and you know what? That’s pretty accurate. This book has a vast array of characters that showcase the upstairs/downstairs divide commonly found in the 19th and early 20th centuries. This is a story that focuses on Marit Olsen, an orphan with a magical ability that allows her to excel as a seamstress. This isn’t a story about the rich and famous and that’s something I really came to enjoy as I read. The charismatic and cynical outlook from all the servants in the manor reminded me a lot of why I loved Downton Abbey. With their cynical and sarcastic humour that comes with the rich versus poor mentality produces a witty charm that instantly had me entranced. Read the FULL REVIEW on The Nerd Daily

  10. 5 out of 5

    Vee_Bookish // YA Book Blogger

    [Review Copy Provided by Pushkin Press, my review is unbiased] Wordpress Blog | Twitter | Pinterest 📗 Buddy read with Lily @ Home For The Lost! We both read this in 5 chapter chunks at a time which worked really well for remembering plot details when we got back to each other. We were really surprised at just how good this book was. 📕 I've been reading a lot of fantasy lately, and not all of it good. What caught my attention about this story is that it's set in Denmark, and the magic itself is usef [Review Copy Provided by Pushkin Press, my review is unbiased] Wordpress Blog | Twitter | Pinterest 📗 Buddy read with Lily @ Home For The Lost! We both read this in 5 chapter chunks at a time which worked really well for remembering plot details when we got back to each other. We were really surprised at just how good this book was. 📕 I've been reading a lot of fantasy lately, and not all of it good. What caught my attention about this story is that it's set in Denmark, and the magic itself is useful - the ability to boil water, sew clothing or absorb the information of any book makes for a household of magical servants, using their magic to keep everything running. 📘 I saw a lot of references to The Snow Queen in this story, which led to me pulling out the equivalent of a crime scene board to try and explain all of them. In particular, the name Helene Lind did not escape my notice as Jenny Lind, the Swedish Opera singer, was said to be the inspiration for Andersen's Snow Queen after she rejected him. 📙 This story is a family mystery, with servant Marit trying to uncover the Vestergaard family's secrets and discover why her father died in their mines several years ago. It's also the story of sisterly bonds, as Marit tries to balance protecting fellow Orphan Eve while letting her grow up and find her own path in life. 📒 The addition of Philip's POV, who is hiding the secrets Marit is trying to unravel, made the story more interesting, because it's not often we get to see the story from the potential villain's perspective. This alongside the possibility of using too much magic and die from the Firn, crystallised ice in your veins, added a constant sense of danger. 📓 This is a standalone fantasy, with most, but not quite all, the answers wrapped up by the end. It was perfectly paced throughout, not a single boring chapter and never rushed. I was so, so sad to leave the story and found myself re-reading the last few lines multiple times before sitting down and having a good cry.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Meigan

    Emily Bain Murphy is pure magic. I fell head over heels in love with her first book, THE DISAPPEARANCES, and have been waiting for something new from her ever since. And the wait was worth it because Murphy delivered another gorgeously magical book with SPLINTERS OF SCARLET. Set in 19th century Denmark, SPLINTERS OF SCARLET was a delightful exploration of sisterhood and family, which centers around magic, ballet, gems, and, fittingly, Hans Christian Andersen. Marit and Eve come from the same orp Emily Bain Murphy is pure magic. I fell head over heels in love with her first book, THE DISAPPEARANCES, and have been waiting for something new from her ever since. And the wait was worth it because Murphy delivered another gorgeously magical book with SPLINTERS OF SCARLET. Set in 19th century Denmark, SPLINTERS OF SCARLET was a delightful exploration of sisterhood and family, which centers around magic, ballet, gems, and, fittingly, Hans Christian Andersen. Marit and Eve come from the same orphanage and while Marit has aged out, she doesn’t want the same thing to happen to 11 year old Eve. All that changes when wealthy ballerina Helene Vestergaard sees Eve perform at the orphanage and offers her a home and Marit a position as a seamstress. Marit has history with the Vestergaard’s, as it was their mines that killed her father, and this provides the perfect opportunity to investigate what really happened in those mines. But trouble soon finds Marit and the rest of the household and she finds herself at the center of something far bigger and more dangerous that she could imagine. ”Magic. To excel in a single area since birth, like a savant, and do things others can do only in their dreams. Magic—the gift that comes with a hefty price.” I absolutely loved everything about this book from the richly imagined historical setting to the magic to the characters and everything in between. And it really did give off vibes of both Downton Abbey and Frozen, which was an absolutely delightful combination. The magic though was definitely a highlight for me because I love when magic has a cost and magic users eventually have to pay a price. In this case, the price is a blue lace similar to frost on a windowpane, that eventually kills the magic user and is known as the Firn. The characters were also very well developed and I loved the little bit of romance that was thrown in, though it’s not the focus of the tale by any means. My only complaint is the story had a tendency to repeat itself and it felt quite unnecessary. Other than that, SPLINTERS OF SCARLET was pure perfection. Bottom line — Emily Bain Murphy is a magical storyteller who infuses her books with magic and family and palpably real characters, and you should do yourself a favor and read both THE DISAPPEARANCES and SPLINTERS OF SCARLET. 4.5 glorious stars and I can’t wait to see what Murphy graces us with in the future. *eARC received courtesy of NetGalley and the publisher.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Stacy Fetters

    "I like glass best. Glass is fragile but strong. It allows us to see through the walls we’ve built around us. It never calls attention to itself but always to what’s beyond it. It can protect things from damage. And yet, when you aren’t careful with it, watch out!” Can you believe it? I’ve had this book sitting in my book closet since January and it took me six months to pick it up. What is wrong with me? I’m usually one to say, not to judge a book by its cover but I’m guilty as hell by doing tha "I like glass best. Glass is fragile but strong. It allows us to see through the walls we’ve built around us. It never calls attention to itself but always to what’s beyond it. It can protect things from damage. And yet, when you aren’t careful with it, watch out!” Can you believe it? I’ve had this book sitting in my book closet since January and it took me six months to pick it up. What is wrong with me? I’m usually one to say, not to judge a book by its cover but I’m guilty as hell by doing that. This cover is all kinds of stunning and I just kept overlooking it. That irritates me because this was absolutely beautiful and it swept me off of my feet. This is the first book that I’ve read by this author but I’ve been hearing her name pop up when I discuss books with my colleagues. I didn’t know what I was getting myself involved with, so I jumped right in without hesitation. I’m proud to say that this was dazzling. RTC

  13. 4 out of 5

    Anna Priemaza

    Emily's books are a light in the darkness. And by that I mean that they are the light and darkness, both. The brilliant, unique worlds Emily creates are dark--with sinister plots, treachery, and, in this case, magic that literally turns the veins to ice. But her books are also full of characters who, while flawed and imperfect, are motivated by love and caring and goodness. Combining this with her beautiful writing makes scenes and characters sparkle like tiny stars in the black night sky. This li Emily's books are a light in the darkness. And by that I mean that they are the light and darkness, both. The brilliant, unique worlds Emily creates are dark--with sinister plots, treachery, and, in this case, magic that literally turns the veins to ice. But her books are also full of characters who, while flawed and imperfect, are motivated by love and caring and goodness. Combining this with her beautiful writing makes scenes and characters sparkle like tiny stars in the black night sky. This light in darkness is what I loved most in THE DISAPPEARANCES, and it's what I loved most in SPLINTERS OF SCARLET, too. To put it another way, Emily's books make me feel like it is the dead of winter and there is a swirling, freezing snowstorm outside... but I am inside by the fire, curled up in a blanket and cozy. And I love them to bits for that reason.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Moon

    This had such a fairytale feel and the magic was refreshing and intriguing. I loved the dancing and sewing elemtns and the intirgue of the jewels, all the intrigue was great.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Diana Bautista

    July 21, 2020 – August 16, 2020 I loved The Disappearances, but I'm not feeling this one right now. Might return later.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Kimberly

    I loved everything about this book - historic Denmark, unique magic, and a compelling mystery. Emily Bain Murphy is an amazing writer and I truly enjoy meeting her characters and exploring her worlds. Cannot wait to read what she writes next.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Angela Cuéllar

    pooled ink Reviews: Thank you to the publisher for sending me a copy to review! Check out my tour stop with Emily Bain Murphy writing a guest post here ! 4.5 Stars Emily Bain Murphy simply has a way of spinning prose and turning phrase that pulls me under, lulling me into a story with a gentle rhythm both magical and exciting. I genuinely enjoyed reading her debut novel The Disappearances and so I was eager to get my hands on a copy of her latest work. Splinters of Scarlet is a mysterious tal pooled ink Reviews: Thank you to the publisher for sending me a copy to review! Check out my tour stop with Emily Bain Murphy writing a guest post here ! 4.5 Stars Emily Bain Murphy simply has a way of spinning prose and turning phrase that pulls me under, lulling me into a story with a gentle rhythm both magical and exciting. I genuinely enjoyed reading her debut novel The Disappearances and so I was eager to get my hands on a copy of her latest work. Splinters of Scarlet is a mysterious tale dipped in history and swept up in the dance of fantasy. Danger lurks in the shadows between heartbreak and smile, love warms the heart between hope and past, and with each pirouette the story spins upon the page one finds their self leaning closer and closer to catch every breath, every moment until the ending sweeps it all away. If you're seeking a historical fantasy standalone that rings with something both lovely and chilling, something rather forgotten yet new, then you might just find yourself reaching for Splinters of Scarlet. I definitely enjoyed the play between Marit's hopes and hunts as she seeks out the truth though doing so could cost her everything. And the magic system was really unique too! But of course it's the character development and the relationships between them that are my favorite element of Murphy's writing. So glad I was able to get a digital arc even though the blog tour was cancelled!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Bryn Shutt

    5 glorious stars to this story!! Mystery, murder, magic and food!! Oh, the food. Downton Abbey meets Frozen in this powerful story about greed, corruption and fear set against the power of friendship, forgiveness and sacrifice. "We both know well how concerned some people can be with what we look like on the outside. But we have to make sure we don't start to look like them on the inside." I highly recommend this lush epic to those who love vivid settings, gorgeous writing and beautiful arcs of fri 5 glorious stars to this story!! Mystery, murder, magic and food!! Oh, the food. Downton Abbey meets Frozen in this powerful story about greed, corruption and fear set against the power of friendship, forgiveness and sacrifice. "We both know well how concerned some people can be with what we look like on the outside. But we have to make sure we don't start to look like them on the inside." I highly recommend this lush epic to those who love vivid settings, gorgeous writing and beautiful arcs of friendship and love (both romantic and platonic). Basically, if you can read, you should give this a whirl! While Splinters of Scarlet is a standalone, I would give my eye teeth for more of these characters and this world some time. *puppy dog eyes*

  19. 5 out of 5

    KristynRene The Hype Queen of Books

    Oh lord. Downton Abbey with Magic. Damnit. GIMMEEEEEEEEEE

  20. 4 out of 5

    Willow Rosenberg

    A book set in Copenhagen!! I love it because that's where I live!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Annette

    Stupid me! I got this book in the Book Box Club, but I missed the buddy read because I forgot my book when I traveled to my parents. However, since the author chat is only in a few days I was back right in time to catch up and this morning in bed was the perfect time to do so. From the moment I got this book in my box I was quite excited about this story. It hadn't been on my radar, but it sounded like something for me. And I was totally right about that! Although there are a few things I would h Stupid me! I got this book in the Book Box Club, but I missed the buddy read because I forgot my book when I traveled to my parents. However, since the author chat is only in a few days I was back right in time to catch up and this morning in bed was the perfect time to do so. From the moment I got this book in my box I was quite excited about this story. It hadn't been on my radar, but it sounded like something for me. And I was totally right about that! Although there are a few things I would have loved to see differently, or better said, I didn't feel as deeply as I had hoped I would feel it, I really enjoyed this read. It's firstly a fast and quick read. The language used isn't too complicated and even though the story is never rushed, on the contrary, it never feels too long either. Especially because all the build up eventually leads to an amazing finale. Secondly, the book has a truly amazing magic system that really influences the characters and story. Even though we're never really explained the details, I really felt the author had really thought her magic through. I don't want to give too much away of course, but the whole idea that using magic literally means slowly dying leads to loads of amazing conflicts and situations. The author could easily write more books set in this world, because there are loads more stories to tell! The aspect I would have liked to see more of, however, are the characters. Of course we get to meet the main character, Marit, and spend a lot of time in her head. She's easy to like and therefore it's also quite easy to root for her and to want her to be happy. However, through her eyes we only get glimpses of the other characters. I somehow feel we didn't get to know them that deep. I also would have loved more chapters with Philippe. He was so interesting and I understand his chapters were just to make us wiser than Marit, but I wouldn't have been against spending some more time in his head! It would have made the ending even more emotional!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    2.5 This one took me so long to read but to be fair I think it was mainly my reading taste. I got this in a subscription box and that's why I read this one. I'm just really fussy about the genre I read and although magic did play a main role in this one it felt like I was reading a historic fantasy.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kay C

    I really enjoyed this book. I was drawn in to this book from the start. I really enjoyed the friendship between Marit and Eve. I was so intrigued on Emily's take on magic.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Marjolein

    I genuinely enjoyed this book! The magic system is original, I really liked it, and the story is well thought out and well executed. The setting in Denmark is nice and something you don't see often. It was fun that Hans Christian Anderson popped up during the book. I liked how all the puzzle pieces were given and slowly fell together at the end.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Becca Mee

    Splinters of Scarlet is a YA historical fantasy about the family we choose for ourselves and how far we will go for their welfare. Marit has kept her seamstress magic a secret following the death of her father and her sister Ingrid. She knows that using it too much will end in death, but when her adopted sister Eve has a final chance to be adopted to a good family, she is determined to do whatever it takes to see it happen. But when Eve catches the attention of Helene Vestergaard, the owner of t Splinters of Scarlet is a YA historical fantasy about the family we choose for ourselves and how far we will go for their welfare. Marit has kept her seamstress magic a secret following the death of her father and her sister Ingrid. She knows that using it too much will end in death, but when her adopted sister Eve has a final chance to be adopted to a good family, she is determined to do whatever it takes to see it happen. But when Eve catches the attention of Helene Vestergaard, the owner of the very mines her father died in, This turn of events leads Marit and Eve into the heart of nineteenth century Denmark, and in the process of ensuring that her sister will thrive in her new life, Marit uncovers a dangerous scheme to use magic to make Denmark a world-power. Will Marit uncover the truth about the Firn and the death of her father, or will her power make it so that she loses everything she's worked so hard to protect---including her very life? I thought Splinters of Scarlet was a really solid YA historical fantasy. The world-building and magic system in this book was probably my favorite part about it. I absolutely loved being immersed in Marit's world, a time period in a country I don't know that much about. I also loved how the magic system and the rules involved interacted with the real-world elements and history in here. I also love how the concept of found family is presented in this book. Marit has lost her blood family, but her love for Eve leads her to her fellow servants at the Vestregaard estate. It is the family Marit chooses for herself that ends up fulfilling her in the end. Splinters of Scarlet was a really unique historical fantasy that was a delight to read.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Courtney

    “ Magic flows like water; magic freezes like ice. Use too much and it costs a pretty price.” * Thank you Emily Bain Murphy and HMH Teen for sending me a ARC. After reading Splinters of Scarlet, I desperately want to pick up Murphy’s debut novel, The Disappearances! Her writing style was completely enthralling and magical and I just ate it up and couldn’t seem to put it down! Every time I picked up this book, it’s like I was placed under a spell. I honestly went into this book not expecting anythi “ Magic flows like water; magic freezes like ice. Use too much and it costs a pretty price.” * Thank you Emily Bain Murphy and HMH Teen for sending me a ARC. After reading Splinters of Scarlet, I desperately want to pick up Murphy’s debut novel, The Disappearances! Her writing style was completely enthralling and magical and I just ate it up and couldn’t seem to put it down! Every time I picked up this book, it’s like I was placed under a spell. I honestly went into this book not expecting anything and left this book with a new favorite and in complete awe. This story is set in 19th century Denmark, a setting I’ve never read about and now need more. Splinters of Scarlet is filled to the brim with magic and a wide array of characters. The magic system was one of the most unique systems I’ve ever come across and I couldn’t help myself of wanting to know more and more! Not only was the setting of this book fantastic and the magic system was unique and full of all kinds of characters, there is also a mystery underneath it all that I was just itching to get to the bottom of! This book blended two of my favorite genres and left me completely satisfied by the end, which is a feat in itself, but the plot twist just had me floored. On top of all the other fantastic elements of this story, the characters are now held very close to my heart. The relationships that budded and grew throughout Splinters of Scarlet left my heart feeling full and the relationships that were already established and only grew more made me want to go and hug my sister! For readers interested in: 19th century Denmark, historical fantasies, mystery, sisterly blonds, Magic

  27. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    This book!!! Wow. I LOVED Emily's first book (The Disappearances), so I was excited to read this, and it absolutely did not disappoint!!! The unique magical system was PERFECT. The main character's magic allows her to stitch thing up, with just a glance, and the way Emily describes it is utterly enchanting. There are also other characters with magic, each one original and distinctive. The magic flooded the story with whimsy, while making the stakes intense, since the act of using magic eventuall This book!!! Wow. I LOVED Emily's first book (The Disappearances), so I was excited to read this, and it absolutely did not disappoint!!! The unique magical system was PERFECT. The main character's magic allows her to stitch thing up, with just a glance, and the way Emily describes it is utterly enchanting. There are also other characters with magic, each one original and distinctive. The magic flooded the story with whimsy, while making the stakes intense, since the act of using magic eventually kills everyone who uses it, and it absolutely kept me turning pages. I also loved the rich details of the historical Denmark setting, that were woven in seamlessly without bogging down the story. And as a former dance major, I loved that two of the characters were ballerinas, and the terms used to describe everything they did were perfectly accurate, and dance was described as almost its own kind of magic, which I related to so much. I loved the themes of found family, and sacrifice, and the writing itself was always lovely without ever being too flowery, or wordy. This one makes it into my top three books that I've read so far this year, and I can't wait for everyone to get a chance to read it! I'd recommend it for fans of Romanov, Woven in Midnight, and Everless, plus anyone who loves unique magic, and found families. Thank you so much, NetGalley, for the free ebook to review.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jamie W

    This book, with its beautifully lush world hinting of forbidden magic and its focus on two orphans as they move into a mansion, will trick you into believing it's a fairytale. But you'd be wrong because this historical fantasy is so much more than that! There is so much going on in this story, there are no comfy lulls. It is a story of the love that binds siblings and makes a family, of loss and hope, and greed and sacrifice. All told with an undercurrent of unsolved mystery and sliced through wi This book, with its beautifully lush world hinting of forbidden magic and its focus on two orphans as they move into a mansion, will trick you into believing it's a fairytale. But you'd be wrong because this historical fantasy is so much more than that! There is so much going on in this story, there are no comfy lulls. It is a story of the love that binds siblings and makes a family, of loss and hope, and greed and sacrifice. All told with an undercurrent of unsolved mystery and sliced through with bright ribbons of danger. Told from 2 points of view, you are swept along the kept guessing until the end. The story takes place in the 1800's in Denmark, and the master himself, Hans Christian Anderson even makes a cameo appearance. The descriptive writing style brings it all to life, to the point I could see the places our characters visit, and could even smell the pine and smoke, and taste all the warm, flaky pastries while watching the snow fall outside. The characters were wonderful and they all contributed to the story. And I really enjoyed the relationship growth that happened between Merit and Eve. And this book actually made me shed a tear, so it's a five-star read for me! This is an awesome stand-alone YA fantasy and I highly recommend it!

  29. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    I really like the setting of this book! I like the time period, the locations in Denmark, and the house that most of the book takes place in. The magic was really fun and really interesting. The concept of magic being both life-giving and life-ending really free me in, as did the plot surrounding the mines and jewels. I didn't feel any stealing draw to any of the characters but I still liked them all. I would have enjoyed more POVs sprinkled throughout the book, however. I think it would've help I really like the setting of this book! I like the time period, the locations in Denmark, and the house that most of the book takes place in. The magic was really fun and really interesting. The concept of magic being both life-giving and life-ending really free me in, as did the plot surrounding the mines and jewels. I didn't feel any stealing draw to any of the characters but I still liked them all. I would have enjoyed more POVs sprinkled throughout the book, however. I think it would've helped me feel closer to the characters. I would definitely read more from this author! This book was imaginative, had a great mystery, and had some really great points about family. Full review: https://picturethisliteraturecom.word...

  30. 5 out of 5

    Lindsay

    Splinters of Scarlet takes the reader on a journey to nineteenth century Denmark filled with magic, mystery, and family love. I loved the setting and the array of characters at the Vestergaard manor; even the minor ones contributed to the story. Like with The Disappearances, the romance was slow building and nothing like the instant love plaguing the majority of teen novels these days. I felt the mystery was a little slow to unravel since the answers weren't revealed until after the 85% mark. Th Splinters of Scarlet takes the reader on a journey to nineteenth century Denmark filled with magic, mystery, and family love. I loved the setting and the array of characters at the Vestergaard manor; even the minor ones contributed to the story. Like with The Disappearances, the romance was slow building and nothing like the instant love plaguing the majority of teen novels these days. I felt the mystery was a little slow to unravel since the answers weren't revealed until after the 85% mark. The reader is kept guessing while Marit searches for clues and connections between the Vestergaards, the mines where her father died, and the auspicious jewels found in the Vestergaard mines. If the mystery was consistent from beginning to end, and not scattered here and there, then the story would have flowed better. Despite that one flaw, I loved the characters and enjoyed the the story, especially the bond between Marit and Eve. Thank you NetGalley for an ARC.

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