It is always amazing when an author can combine a fantasy world with tormented characters and powerful themes. One such book is Followed By Frost by Charlie N. Holmberg which was published by the Amazon Publishing imprint 47 North in 2015. This chilly read is about survival, romance, sacrifice, and how suffering can cause the coldest hearts to change.
Smitha is a selfish, vain young woman who has no qualms about rejecting Mordan’s love. But Smitha gets her dues when Mordan curses her to be as cold as her heart. Smitha’s skin freezes like ice, the devastating snowstorms that hover over her force Smitha to leave her village, and Death in the form of a being named Sadriel follows Smitha on her lonely journey of suffering and eternal winter.
“I curse you, Smitha Ronson, to be as cold as your heart. May winter follow you wherever you go, and with the cold, death.”
But Smitha’s unbearable life changes when she meets a prince from a Southern land. His kingdom suffers from drought, and he wants Smith to bring snow to save them. She agrees, but as Sadriel grows more dangerous and as Smitha becomes closer to the captain of the guard, she must make decisions that may affect her curse forever.
“Mordan had taken away the life I had know, but even his curse had not taken my life. Without that, I would be truly frozen, unable to change. Unable to save myself. My life, albeit a hard one, was the only thing I had left.”
Book Group Questions
- Smitha begins her story as a selfish, mean girl and ends as a kind, giving woman. How did her suffering change her heart for the better?
- Share your thoughts on Sadriel and on how he is portrayed as the personification of Death.
- Compare Sadriel and Lo’s relationships with Smitha. How are these two men different? How did their relationships with Smitha change throughout the story?
- After Smitha’s curse is broken she has to make a decision that may bring the curse back again. Why was the choice she made different from the selfish choices she made at the beginning of the book?
If you enjoyed Followed By Frost, then check out Charlie N. Holmberg’s The Paper Magician series.