Tarot was such a whimsically beautiful tale!
It reads like a fairy tale or a tumble down a rabbit hole into Wonderland — and I don’t read a lot of books like this, with such an ethereal style, so I really enjoyed the difference! It’s a story about a girl who creates magical tapestries and you could just see the artistry of how the story was put together. Plus the stark contrasts between Anna’s love of beautiful things and how she craves kindness — vs — the inflexible destruction of a tyrannical king who’ll murder to get what he wants??! It was well done.
Also can we please appreciate the pastel perfection fo this cover. 🙌🏻
so much thanks to the author for sending me a copy of her beautiful book!
➸ Anna grows up isolated and alone in a tower…but she refuses to let this warp her.
Like this could be a total villain origin story — but Anna is the actual sweetest soul?! And for once I just really loved reading about a Soft™ girl because strength comes in all shapes. Anna is whimsical and a dreamer, she craves beauty and believes the best of everyone. She makes these AMAZING tapestries, overflowing with vivid colours and imaginations…and she kind of walks herself right into one.
It gave me some serious hippy commune vibes…but it was also so sweet? Like it’s just full of all these teenagers who genuinely love this life where they flow together and share the work and love. Emotions are all very simplistic and naive. And Anna is like super naive herself, having been locked in a tower for so long, so she makes some mistakes that make you go 😬 But realistically? Her actions made sense. The romance is really fast though, so I didn’t really connect to it, but again…it kind of made sense that Anna would fall in love fast when she’s never had this before. I was just a little awkward about how they’d do things that could have been super sexual, but weren’t? Like taking a bath together… but then I thought about:
➸ Also the Tarot card parallels were great!
Like some of the characters were The Fool, The Magician, the Hermit, etc. And Anna escapes to Cups and the old kingdom is Pentacles. I’m not familiar with the whole tarot deck, so I probably missed references. But it was an interesting way to like weave it in like a retelling?!
➸ Also the contrasts = am here for that.
The dark kingdom she escapes from vs the soft pastel loving beachside commune she ends up in. Plus when these worlds collide it goes from 0 to 100 real fast and just W O W my heart wasn’t ready.
➸ The only thing I’m a little uncomfortable with…
…is just how the sole queer couple was written. It doesn’t bury its gays, but it didn’t wrap up their story line and they got, arguably, the worst time. I won’t go into spoilers, but yeah. I’ve just read a lot of disappointing queer rep this month, so I probably went into this feeling a bit raw.
Overall, this was just a delight. It’s whimsical and soft and flowing…and it really captures Anna’s vulnerability as she falls in love with the people of this seaside paradise and realises it’s her fault that darkness is coming. It’s also a bit of a parallel on how humanity gets scared of things they can’t control so they try to destroy it.
Anna was never supposed to exist. Born of a forbidden union between the Queen and the tyrannical King’s archnemesis, Anna is forced to live out her days isolated in the Tower, with only her mentors and friends the Hermit, the Fool, and the Magician to keep her company. To pass the time, Anna imagines unique worlds populated by creatives and dreamers—the exact opposite of the King’s land of fixed fates and rigid rules—and weaves them into four glorious tapestries.
But on the eve of her sixteenth birthday and her promised release from the Tower, Anna discovers her true lineage: She’s the daughter of Marco, a powerful magician, and the King is worried that his magical gifts are starting to surface in Anna. Fearing for her life, Anna flees the Tower and finds herself in Cups, a lush, tropical land full of all the adventure, free-spiritedness, and creativity she imagined while weaving.
Anna thinks she’s found paradise in this world of beachside parties, endless food and drink, and exhilarating romance. But when the fabric of Cups begins to unravel, Anna discovers that her tapestries are more than just decoration. They’re the foundation for a new world that she is destined to create—as long as the terrors from the old world don’t catch up with her first.
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do you prefer books with more factual styles or do you like fairy tale vibes? and would you like to live in a paradise beach community?? because I’d be down for a hammock nap right about now 😂tell me if this is on your tbr!