Review: Greymist Fair by Francesca Zappia

Greymist Fair by Francesca Zappia

Greymist Fair
Francesca Zappia
Harper Collins
Published March 28, 2023

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About Greymist Fair

The people of Greymist Fair know that the woods are a dangerous and magical place, and that they should never set foot off the road. But when a young tailor discovers a body on the road, her search for the culprit reveals even more strange and dark happenings around her town. From acclaimed author Francesca Zappia, GREYMIST FAIR is a suspenseful and inventive murder-mystery inspired by the lesser-known fairytales of the Brothers Grimm. GREYMIST FAIR will bewitch readers of Rachel Vincent’s RED WOLF, Liz Braswell’s A Twisted Tale series, and fans of INTO THE WOODS.

Features chapter decorations by the author throughout, as well as a map.

Two roads lead into a dark forest. They meet at Greymist Fair, the village hidden in the trees, a place kept alive by the families that never leave. The people of Greymist Fair know the woods are a dangerous and magical place, and to set foot off the road is to invite trouble.

When Heike, the village’s young tailor, discovers a body on the road, she goes looking for who is responsible. But her quest only leads to more strange happenings around Greymist Fair.

Inspired by the original, bloody, lesser-known fairytales of the Brothers Grimm, acclaimed author Francesca Zappia crafts an enthralling murder-mystery that will keep readers turning the pages. Told from multiple points of view, with each narrative building on the crime discovered by Heike, Greymist Fair examines the themes of childhood fears, growing into adult responsibilities, and finding a place to call home amid the trials of life and death.

Greymist Fair on Goodreads

My Review

I read my first book by Francesca Zappia last year. Marines on YouTube talked about her experience reading KATZENJAMMER, and I was totally intrigued, so when I got a chance to read it, I went for it. (Review coming soon.)

While KATZENJAMMER is a strange story, I found the characters very compelling. I also thought the author did a great job telling a weird/unusual story, so when I saw GREYMIST FAIR, I was excited to try it.

And guess what? I loved it! It’s definitely less strange than KATZENJAMMER, but the storytelling is still what I’d call nontraditional? The book is broken down into parts which are usually 5-6 chapters or so. Each part gives us an up-close point of view of a single character connected to the village of Greymist Fair.

Each of those stories was pretty compelling on its own. One reveals a serial killer. Another tells of a wish gone horribly wrong. Each part is like a puzzle piece, adding to an overall image of what happened to create the danger in the forest that surrounds Greymist Fair and makes it no longer safe to travel even on the road in and out.

I think readers who enjoyed the GILDED duology by Marissa Meyer (reviews coming soon) or dark fairytales like HEARTLESS will love GREYMIST FAIR.

Greymist Fair on Bookshop

Content Notes

Recommended for Ages 12 up.

A broad cast of characters. I think one mentions putting a binder on as he gets dressed, so I took that to mean he’s transgender. Some are described as having brown skin.

Profanity/Crude Language Content
Mild profanity used very infrequently.

Romance/Sexual Content
Kissing between boy and girl. Flirting between two boys.

Spiritual Content
Death is a character in the book. There’s also a witch. Innocents who die become Wargs, spirits who cause harm to those who venture into the woods.

Violent Content
Situations of peril. A girl discovers the remains of a village boy in the woods outside her village. A girl discovers children chained in the basement of a home and frees them. A man dies after falling into a well. A boy has a rival bound and whipped.

Drug Content
Characters drink alcohol as part of a Yule celebration.

Note: This post contains affiliate links, which do not cost you anything to use, but which help support this blog. I received a free copy of GREYMIST FAIR in exchange for my honest review.

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About Kasey

Reads things. Writes things. Fluent in sarcasm. Willful optimist. Cat companion, chocolate connoisseur, coffee drinker. There are some who call me Mom.

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