Book Reviews

Blog Tour: Review: Thorn by Intisar Khanani + Giveaway

I have been looking forwards to Thorn for years now! Thorn is a Goose Girl retelling featuring a princess with a choice to make about her own future. Keep reading to see what I thought of Thorn and my favorite quotes.


A princess with two futures. A destiny all her own

Between her cruel family and the contempt she faces at court, Princess Alyrra has always longed to escape the confines of her royal life. But when she’s betrothed to the powerful prince Kestrin, Alyrra embarks on a journey to his land with little hope for a better future.

When a mysterious and terrifying sorceress robs Alyrra of both her identity and her role as princess, Alyrra seizes the opportunity to start a new life for herself as a goose girl.

But Alyrra soon finds that Kestrin is not what she expected. The more Alyrra learns of this new kingdom, the pain and suffering its people endure, as well as the danger facing Kestrin from the sorceress herself, the more she knows she can’t remain the goose girl forever.

With the fate of the kingdom at stake, Alyrra is caught between two worlds and ultimately must decide who she is, and what she stands for.


(Disclaimer: I received this book from Edelweiss. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)

TW: Abuse

I love re-tellings and Thorn is no exception! I wasn’t familiar with “The Goose Girl” before, but Thorn is about our sense of responsibility and our own belief in our ability to change our future. It’s a book about standing up for people without a voice, about doing what’s right even if it will cost you, and the our feelings of powerlessness.

My favorite part of Thorn was Alyrra. Consistently underestimated, Alyrra not only has to deal with magic and an unfamiliar world, but also a conflict between her responsibility as a princess and a girl. Can Alyrra remain a goose girl? Does she have what it takes in her to take back her title, her life? It’s about her own desire for the future. I loved this theme in Thorn because you can always find fantasy heroines who eagerly accept their responsibility. But Alyrra genuinely has to figure out her own decision about what she can live with and who she wants to be.

This is how you survive: one breath to the next, refusing each thought as it comes to you. This is how you get through the worst of things.

At the same time, Alyrra has to figure out how she can feel powerful. With her history of fear, abuse, and her awful family, Alyrra’s story is one of courage and our power to take control of our agency. She is offered the future she thinks she wants, but it will cost those around her. But her only option is to go back into a life she wanted to escape, to live in fear, and face the possibility of living without people she can trust. It’s always the ones who never want the power, the responsibility, the lives in their hands, that are the ones who are best for the job.

It means more than just that I have lost my body, lost the story of my life written upon it.


Thorn is an amazing book for lovers of fairy tales, conflicted heroines, and magic. I am so happy it was re-released and that we all have the opportunity to experience it again!

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1st Prize: Win a book of your choice from Bookdepository (INT*)

2nd Prize: Win a THORN swag pack (stickers, bookmark, and a signed bookplate) [INT]

– Bookdepository: Open INTERNATIONALLY, *where Bookdepository ships to (

– Swag bundle: Open INTERNATIONALLY.

Starts: 24th March 2020

Ends: 7th April 2020

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Preorder/Library Request Details

Intisar is extending this promotion until the end of the tour, so we have a chance to share this:

On March 24th Thorn will be releasing from Hot Key (UK) and HarperTeen (US/CA)! To celebrate, I’m offering some amazing Thorn goodies to everyone who …

  • pre-orders/orders a copy of Thorn before March 31st at 23.59.
  • OR requests it from their library (library hold / suggested purchase) before March 31st at 23.59.

Here’s what’s up for grabs:

Physical goodies (US/UK):

  • A Thorn Bookmark
  • A set of Chibi Stickers featuring Thorn characters
  • A Signed Bookplate

PLUS Digital goodies (worldwide):

  • A PDF of Brambles – a Thorn prequel short story so you can jump into Alyrra’s world now!
  • A PDF of The (Annotated) Goose Girl – the original fairytale with annotations from yours truly in the margin
  • A coloring page of three Thorn-themed bookmarks

All you need to do to enter is send a proof of purchase (or screenshot of your library hold), your name and address to T&Cs apply!

UK entrants: Hot Key Books rocks and can mail you physical goodies as well as the digital. Check it out here:

Non-US/UK entrants: I really, really wanted to offer you the physical goodies, but postage is a bear. If you would like to cover the cost of an international stamp ($1.20), I can absolutely mail you the goodies as well. E-mail in your proof/screenshot for your digital goodies, and I’ll link you up so you can do that.

Original link:

The universal book link for purchasing Thorn is:

About the Author

Intisar Khanani grew up a nomad and world traveler. Born in Wisconsin, she has lived in five different states as well as in Jeddah on the coast of the Red Sea. She first remembers seeing snow on a wintry street in Zurich, Switzerland, and vaguely recollects having breakfast with the orangutans at the Singapore Zoo when she was five. She currently resides in Cincinnati, Ohio, with her husband and two young daughters. 
Until recently, Intisar wrote grants and developed projects to address community health with the Cincinnati Health Department, which was as close as she could get to saving the world. Now she focuses her time on her two passions: raising her family and writing fantasy. Intisar’s debut novel, Thorn, was picked up by HarperTeen and will be re-released in Winter 2020. In the meantime, she’s hard at work on the remaining books of The Sunbolt Chronicles.

Tour Schedule

March 24th

The Unofficial Addiction Book Fan Club – Welcome Post

March 25th

My Bookish Escapades – Guest Post
Mythical Books – Review
Moonlight Rendezvous – Review + Favourite Quotes
Marzie’s Reads – Review
MaBookYard – Review + Favourite Quotes

March 26th

L.M. Durand – Review
The Everlasting Library – Review
Book-Keeping – Review
Foals, Fiction & Filigree – Review + Favourite Quotes
& She Reads – Review
Elisabeth Wheatley – Review + Playlist + Dream Cast

March 27th

Kait Plus Books – Guest Post
Utopia State of Mind – Review + Favourite Quotes
Here’s to Happy Endings – Review
The Laughing Listener – Review
Bookishly Nerdy – Review + Favourite Quotes
Books_n_sunshine – Review + Favourite Quotes + Dream Cast

March 28th

A Book Addict’s Bookshelves – Interview
Books.Bags.Burgers – Review + Favourite Quotes
Gwendalyn’s Books – Review
The Layaway Dragon – Review + Favourite Quotes
Fanna Wants The World To Read – Review

March 29th

Fangirl Pixie Blog – Review + Playlist + Favourite Quotes
Sometimes Leelynn Reads – Review + Dream Cast
La La in the Library – Review
Hauntedbybooks – Review + Favourite Quotes
Biblioxytocin – Review + Favourite Quotes

March 30th

To All The Books I’ve Read Before – Interview
A Dream Within A Dream – Review
Happily, Hedy – Spotlight Dazzled by Books – Review + Favourite Quotes
inkstains.and.dust – Review
theanxiousbookworm_ – Review + Favourite Quotes


What’s an underrated book you think should get more love?

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6 thoughts on “Blog Tour: Review: Thorn by Intisar Khanani + Giveaway

  1. This book has been on my TBR for a couple years. I didn’t realize it’s being re-released by a major publisher until I saw it popping up in the blogsophere! It sounds like a great story that will fit in well with what readers are looking for today (as opposed to perhaps when the book was first self-published).

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