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Publisher's Summary

Inspired by myth, fairy tale, and folklore, number one New York Times best-selling author Leigh Bardugo has crafted a deliciously atmospheric collection of short stories filled with betrayals, revenge, sacrifice, and love.

Enter the Grishaverse.... Love speaks in flowers. Truth requires thorns.

Travel to a world of dark bargains struck by moonlight, of haunted towns and hungry woods, of talking beasts and gingerbread golems, where a young mermaid's voice can summon deadly storms and where a river might do a lovestruck boy's bidding but only for a terrible price.

Perfect for new listeners and dedicated fans, the tales in The Language of Thorns will transport you to lands both familiar and strange - to a fully realized world of dangerous magic that millions have visited through the novels of the Grishaverse.

©2017 Leigh Bardugo (P)2017 Audible, Inc.

What listeners say about The Language of Thorns

Average Customer Ratings
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meh..

it wasn't the best... would of prefered a continuation 🙄
it in no way continues from the last one...
Meh...

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50/50

I really enjoyed the first few shorter stories but must admit I was a bit over it after the nutcracker
Im thinking it’s a good book to do between a series or a long book, was impressed by the narrator
She did a good job of it all
If I could do a half star I would instead of a full three star

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Couldn't finish this one

The first story was great. It was all downhill from there.
I really struggled to finish this one, which says alot considering its a book of short stories!

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Good different

Not at all what I thought it would be but thoroughly enjoyed it. Loved that I could listen to these stories when I didn't have time for my usual long audiobook binges.

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  • kgage
  • 22-01-2018

Like a Sister Grimm

I loved the first story, but could barely finish the next two. It is very well written, but dark. These fairytales teach lessons in the old grim way but for this day and age. The overall moral seems to be: be careful who you trust because even the people you love and count on the most can be hiding a monster inside. These stories haunt me unpleasantly. I don't think I'll finish them.
If you are a fan of Grimm fairytales, where the witch is rolled down the hill in a barrel studded with nails or are cooked in their own ovens, you'll probably love these.
***Spoiler alert***
The thing is, the innocent are harmed dreadfully in these stories too. I guess that makes it more like real life, and is a lesson in itself. The happily ever after in the stories I read left the protagonist almost as battered and scarred as the antagonist.

110 people found this helpful

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  • Felicia J
  • 21-03-2020

Dark fables with unexpected twists

4.5 stars.

You don't need to have read any of the Grishaverse novels to enjoy the six fables in this collection, all of which borrow elements from familiar stories and serve them up with a twist. The stories are dark and chilling, exploring themes of female empowerment, loyalty and being careful what you wish for.

Lauren Fortgang was a wonderful narrator, with a note of childlike wonder in her voice that enhanced the feel of fairy tales being told around a fire on a chilly night.

Ayama and the Thorn Wood, 4/5: A story about two rejected outsiders that draws from Beauty and the Beast, Cinderella, and the myth of the Minotaur.

The Too-Clever Fox, 4/5: This is a fable about a clever fox, traps, loneliness and friendship - but not in the ways you'd expect. I figured out the twist early on, but I have to admit it was a great twist!

The Witch of Duva, 5/5: A decidedly adult fairy tale, the story revolves around evil hiding in plain sight and the subversion of expectations. I can't say much more without giving everything away ... so dig in & enjoy the shivers down your spine.

Little Knife, 5/5: A cautionary tale about the power of nature, the arrogance of men, and the danger of treating women as commodities.

The Soldier Prince, 5/5: An ingenious twist on all the tales of toys come to life through the power of a child's imagination. What happens when the toy develops desires of its own?

When Water Sang Fire, 4/5: This story meandered for awhile and I had trouble staying focused on it, but when it found its footing, it turned into a dark, rewarding take on a familiar childhood story.

38 people found this helpful

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  • dlnshort
  • 28-05-2019

Folk Tales as they were meant to be

I love story telling. I love fairy tales. I love hearing different iterations of fairy tales. I've always been drawn to the darker classic versions. And I've thoroughly enjoyed getting to know the Grishaverse. This book brings all those things together. These stories are dark and human and fantastical and raw.

17 people found this helpful

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  • Victoria Araiza
  • 06-02-2020

More!

A collection of short stories about the myths and folklore in the Grishaverse. What's really great about this book is that you don’t need to read any of the previous books in this universe to be captivated by each tale. If you get a copy of this book you are in for a real treat since there are lovely illustrations that change with each page turn. They really add to the unfolding mystery in each tale.
There's so many great things to say about this collection of short stories. Mostly I want to express how these tales really add an important aspect of world building to the Grishaverse. It had its own history which is as rich as it is dangerous. The audiobook is a really fun listen, even if the lessons in each story are a bit dark. I really like how this reflects with the hard lives that these people have had to live. Some lessons are cruel or harsh only because they are important to portray. The audiobook is also really well narrated, the voice actor really adds her flair to each tale. One thing about the tales were they really were a league of their own. Not following any standard and bringing something truly unique for each reader to take away as a lesson or insight.
I think the only thing I didn’t like about this collection was that it wasn’t longer. I hope Leigh Bardugo writes some more tales for us. We can only hope that all her future short stories follow the same standards.

11 people found this helpful

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  • R. Froode
  • 21-08-2020

Absolutely loved and wished it didn’t end

Fairy tales for adults, like being a kid again but with the knowledge of an elder .. you will not regret if you have an ounce of soul and wonder

9 people found this helpful

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  • 26Kldray
  • 24-02-2020

Great 💕

Really enjoyed the Narration of this 📖 The Narrator was great at changing her voice to different characters

6 people found this helpful

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  • Rachel Deal
  • 11-10-2019

I couldn’t stop listening

I don’t often enjoy short stories or write reviews but every single one of these had me completely invested in plot. Leigh Bardugo’s writing and ingenuity in this blows me away. I only want more of these to listen to.

5 people found this helpful

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  • g
  • 03-07-2019

I like the writing style

I listened to these one story a day. The stories are a little dark. Great old-style fairy tale feel. I am likely to listen to these again at some point.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Brittacakes20
  • 02-11-2017

Another Amazing Book for Leigh Bardugo

Ayama and the Thorn Wood: 5/5
WHOA! This story was great, it hit Cinderella with a touch of the Greek Myth of the Minotaur, and just whoa, It blended amazing. The artwork was very cool, I loved how it took over the page.

The Too-Clever Fox: 5/5
This is one of my favorites that Leigh has Written, The artwork added in was a huge bonus!

The Witch of Duva: 5/5
AHH. I listened to this one through the audiobook and it was amazing! Holy Crud! A+++ Artwork yet again was amazing.

Little Knife: 10/5
Let me just say the Artwork blew me away, this is my Favorite Leigh Bardugo Short Story. Just AMAZING!

The Soldier Prince: 4.9/5
This is the only story that fell a little short for me, It took me awhile to get into it but it was still really great! The Nutcracker aspect was great!

When Water Sang Fire: 10/5
I think I might have a another favorite! GO LEIGH! AGH. I loved this! I loved the Mermaids and just. GAH. I can't even tell you how much I loved this!



Overall:
Leigh Bardugo knows how to write, man. The Language of Thorns is certainly amazing, The Narrator was amazing and her voice hit Leigh's writing perfectly!

15 people found this helpful

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  • Phx17
  • 01-03-2021

Less Grisha, more Grimm

It’s as if the author set out to take back fairy tales from Disney and return them to their Brother’s Grimm roots, using the Grishaverse for the setting. If so, she succeeded marvelously. Even better, these are short stories, plunging you right into the dark, magical tales and straight to the campfire goosebumps, where if you are lucky, the “happy” ending leaves you cut, but not dead.

There are no appearances of characters from the Grisha series, nor is the steampunk side present here. If you’d only get this for the Grishaverse connection, then I’d recommend saving your credit. This is instead for lovers of twisted fairy tales featuring strong women.

If that sounds good, I recommend, from kid friendly to adults only, and from Disney to Grimm:
🥀 Eligible Maidens - Short, free in Audible Plus. If you prefer a smart maiden to a hero knight. What happens when a witch hating town sacrifices four children into the monster pit? 3⭐️
🥀Abena and the Bride-Mad Sorcerer. Short and free in Audible Plus. Like the Three Billy Goats Gruff, but with girls and a Grimm sentiment. 2⭐️
🥀Once More Upon a Time - 3.5 hrs, possibly still free in Audible Plus. has both Disney’s magic apples and the “be careful what you wish for” Grimm vibe. A little more sexual innuendo than Disney, but otherwise kid friendly. 3 ⭐️
🥀 Once Upon a Crime -two in this series free in Audible, following 35 year old Gretel, a fashion loving battle axe who solves mysteries, with phenomenal narration by Kate Reading. 4 ⭐️
🥀The Bone Houses - Buffy + Grimm + 13th Warrior = YA Gold. Teen Ryn and her friend battle the dead in mountain mists. Full length and excellent. 4⭐️
🥀Uprooted or Spinning Silver by Novik, The former a loose Beauty and The Beast, Grimm style; the latter in shades of Rapunzel and the Ice Queen. I liked Uprooted best, but the Russian accent in the narrator takes getting used to. 5,4 ⭐️
🥀The Magpie Lord - If the Brothers Grimm were instead lovers. This is for adults only. This is Victorian steampunk that combines a MM (explicit bdsm) romance with gothic mystery. There’s a Sleepy Hollows mood, plus shamans, Chinese mysticism, warlocks, and voodoo. 4⭐️

2 people found this helpful

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  • dseanc
  • 19-02-2020

more overt bilious feminism

Most men are stupid and evil, those that aren't are unrewarded and discarded, all the women are virtuous. selfless and kind, this narrative is getting repetitive and boring. Very childish fairytale type stories with little or no lively action. I think Ms Bardugo needs to veer away from this unwanted and uneccesary diatribe of feminist empowerment, it is boring. unreal and crass.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Tara
  • 13-11-2019

Lovers of the Grishaverse rejoice!

If you are a Grishaverse fan this is sure to delight. That last story in particular. Lauren Fortgang could narrate a phonebook and I’d enjoy it but luckily she narrates Leigh Bardugo books so we have wonderful stories narrated by a voice I could listen to for days.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Lyndsey
  • 26-01-2018

Fun fairytales from the Grishaverse

I enjoyed this collection of short fables from Bardugo's amazingly well-crafted Grishaverse. They don't really add anything to the experience of reading Shadow and Bone or Six of Crows, but they were a fun way to pass the time on my commute.

3 people found this helpful

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  • jyoti
  • 17-07-2021

great world building for the grishaverse

loved it! lauren fortgang is a fantastic narrator! a collection of short stories based in the grishaverse i want so much more! highly recommend it!

2 people found this helpful

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  • Delilah
  • 21-09-2018

Addictive!!!

Loved every minute of these spellbinding tales. Beautifully written and read. I would highly recommend!

2 people found this helpful

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  • em
  • 04-11-2021

Really enjoyable and thought provoking.

Really enjoyable, imaginative, thought provoking stories. Thoroughly enjoyed and will listen to again. highly recommend.

1 person found this helpful

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