House of Salt and Sorrows by Erin A. Craig
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
A version of The Twelve Dancing Princesses set in an alternate world, a world with different gods and goddesses, religions and rules. The islands that the Thaumus family rules over are remote and devoted to Protus, god of the sea - the customs are different than those on the mainland, including a yearlong mourning period. After the death of her mother and four older sisters, Annaleigh hasn't been out of mourning for years yet her reaction to her stepmother's suggestion that the family cease and instead have a ball celebrating both the sixteenth birthday of "the triplets" and the pregnancy that might finally bring boys to the family doesn't excite her. At the ball, she realizes that the family is scorned for being cursed (in addition to breaking with custom) but her sisters are desperate to find husbands. And thus the dancing begins... There is a great twist here, and the world of the islands is well-realized. I'm hoping that the author revisits other old tales but sets them in this world as there are realms I'd love to explore.
eARC provided by publisher.