A (Winter)Song for the Solstice

Happy Yule, Bookwyrms! A funny thing happened while I was perusing the 2020 Writers Market. I stumbled upon a reference to a twisted faery tale heavily inspired by Labyrinth and set during the Winter Solstice.

Photo of an e-reader open to the cover of Wintersong by S Jae Jones.  Next to the device is a peppermint mocha in a very merry mug covered in Christmas themed words like holly and icing.

How had I not heard of this before???

And so! I called on the goblins to take me back to the age of Mozart, to follow a young composer named Liesl as she fights to reclaim her sister from the Goblin King.

I’m about a quarter of the way through and, so far, this story is on track to earn a 5 out of 5 strange flutes that almost feel like flesh in your hands.

The Labyrinthine elements are woven in so organically — the Erlkönig or Elf King is an old figure in Germanic and Scandinavian folklore — that it doesn’t feel like just a thinly veiled fanfic. Although, I do love that the Erl King has bi-color eyes just like David Bowie. 😁

The story is also based on the Christina Rossetti poem, “The Goblin Market,” in which a girl has to save her sister after the latter eats enchanted goblin fruit, as well as (I’m pretty sure) on Maurice Sendak’s Outside Over There, a picture book about a girl who plays her enchanted horn instead of watching her baby sister and thus also has to save her from the goblins.

Kind of reminds me of Frozen, too, now that I think of it. 😉


So! Any Bookwyrms feel like going Into the wintry Unknown with me? Have any recs for other stories that feel like very skillfully transformed fanfics? Don’t conceal — reveal!


  1. Love, love, love your photo! Great post! I haven’t read any “thinly veiled fanfiction” in a while — at least not intentionally. But I really loved the book Ordinary Magic by Caitlen Rubino-Bradway. It’s kind of a Harry Potter fanfiction about where Squibs go to school.

    • Oooh, that sounds awesome! Gotta give some love to the Squibs! And thank you! I specifically asked for the cafe’s Christmasiest mug that day. 😄

  2. No books like that for me! I am, however, reading The Hitchhikers Guild to the Galaxy for the first time. It’s apparently a book that has three books in one, but I’m enjoying it. It’s different than the movie in so many ways, so I’m glad I’m finally picking it up.

    Be sure to share more once you finish the book!

    • Oooh, nice! I will say, the fourth book is quite lovely. Skip the fifth one. I do not speak of the fifth one. Jk, I’ll totally rant about it sometime if you want.

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