Book Review: Patricia A. McKillip’s Solstice Wood

Posted November 30, 2010 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews

I received this book for free from the library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: Patricia A. McKillip’s Solstice Wood

Solstice Wood


Patricia A. McKillip

fantasy that was published by Ace Books on January 2, 2007 and has 278 pages.

Explore it on Goodreads or Amazon.

Other books by this author which I have reviewed include In the Forests of Serre, The Bards of Bone Plain, Ombria in Shadow, Alphabet of Thorn, Od Magic, Harrowing the Dragon, Song for the Basilisk, Wonders of the Invisible World, Kingfisher, Winter Rose

Second in the contemporary Winter Rose fantasy series. I suspect you should read Winter Rose before this one.

In 2007, Solstice Wood won the Mythopoeic Fantasy Award for Adult Literature.

My Take

Shades of Charles de Lint! I haven’t read much McKillip yet and Solstice Wood seems very unlike what I’ve read so far…more Charles de Lint than anything.

It’s a fascinating story of a “war” between the fey and humanity which culminates when Sylvia has to return home for her grandfather’s funeral. Secrets within secrets and I am so hoping that there is a #3 because there is so much possibility for their future.

This quote sums up McKillip’s style of writing in this particular story:

“…there were too many arms under the crosshatch of lights, another head, other Tylers trying to emerge from the gangling, awkward sprite.”

She just writes so evocatively.

The Story

When bookstore owner Sylvia Lynn returns to her childhood home in upstate New York, she meets the Fiber Guild — a group of local women who meet to knit, embroider, and sew — and learns why her grandmother watches her so closely.

A primitive power exists in the forest, a force the Fiber Guild seeks to bind in its stitches and weavings. And Sylvia is no stranger to the woods…

The Cover and Title

The cover is soft and hazy in its range of blues of the misty moonlight night. It’s the dark-haired Sylvia in a white gown walking in the night, the house in the background and the woods to her right. A wide border of a figured blue-on-blue is the background for a rounded colonial blue inset with the italicized title in white. The author’s name is also in white.

The title is the Solstice Wood which figures so prominently in the family’s past and their present.