Review: Winterwood

Title: Winterwood
Author: Shea Ernshaw
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Publisher: Simon and Schuster Canada
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: November 5, 2019
Rating: ★★★★★


Goodreads Synopsis:

Be careful of the dark, dark wood…

Especially the woods surrounding the town of Fir Haven. Some say these woods are magical. Haunted, even.

Rumored to be a witch, only Nora Walker knows the truth. She and the Walker women before her have always shared a special connection with the woods. And it’s this special connection that leads Nora to Oliver Huntsman—the same boy who disappeared from the Camp for Wayward Boys weeks ago—and in the middle of the worst snowstorm in years. He should be dead, but here he is alive, and left in the woods with no memory of the time he’d been missing.

But Nora can feel an uneasy shift in the woods at Oliver’s presence. And it’s not too long after that Nora realizes she has no choice but to unearth the truth behind how the boy she has come to care so deeply about survived his time in the forest, and what led him there in the first place. What Nora doesn’t know, though, is that Oliver has secrets of his own—secrets he’ll do anything to keep buried, because as it turns out, he wasn’t the only one to have gone missing on that fateful night all those weeks ago.

For as long as there have been fairy tales, we have been warned to fear what lies within the dark, dark woods and in Winterwood, New York Times bestselling author Shea Ernshaw, shows us why.

From New York Times bestselling author of The Wicked Deep comes a haunting romance perfect for fans of Practical Magic,where dark fairy tales and enchanted folklore collide after a boy, believed to be missing, emerges from the magical woods—and falls in love with the witch determined to unravel his secrets.


Nora Walker lives in Fir Haven near the woods. Her family has always had a special connection to the woods, which are alive. The Walker women can enter the woods on a full moon and take the lost things that appear in the woods. One evening, Nora finds a boy in the woods. He’s a boy who went missing from a nearby camp a couple of weeks before. Nora is surprised that the boy, Oliver, is still alive. However, Oliver wasn’t the only one who went missing that night. Nora has to use her family lore to figure out what really happened to Oliver the night he went missing.

I loved the magical setting in this story. The woods near Nora’s home had specific rules for her family. They could only enter on the night of the full moon because the woods were asleep. Things that went missing would appear in the woods, including the missing boy, Oliver. The woods were a character as well, because they would come alive on the other nights, meaning no one should enter. There were some natural elements that played an important role in this story as well. There was a big storm, which cut off access to the town from everywhere else. There was a life changing fire at the end. I loved how important the setting was in this story.

The ending of this story was perfect. All the clues to what actually happened were throughout the story, but I didn’t catch on until the answer was revealed. This was a clever magical story. It could be solved by the reader, but it was a pleasant surprise for me.

This is a beautiful story.

Thank you Simon and Schuster Canada for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw

The Bone Houses by Emily Lloyd-Jones

Have you read Winterwood? What did you think of it?

Author: jilljemmett

Jill lives in Toronto, Canada. She has studied English, Creative Writing, and Publishing. Jill is the creator and content producer of Jill’s Book Blog, where she has published a blog post every day for the last four years, including 5-7 book reviews a week. She can usually be found with her nose in a book.

4 thoughts on “Review: Winterwood”

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