The Waters of Sorrow by Tanith Lee

Image result for red as blood tanith lee book cover

Title: The Waters of Sorrow
Author: Tanith Lee
In: Red as Blood (Tanith Lee)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Fairy tales, Fantasy, Ghosts
Dates read: 17th December 2019
Pace: Slow
Format: Short story
Publisher: Wildside
Year: 1983
5th sentence, 74th page: Without some attention it must have been easy to miss the spot.

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Along the river there are the women who were destroyed by love. The women who find men on a long, dark night and dance him to death. But there is another story at the water of sorrows that needs to be told.


As an ending to the Red as Blood collection, this short story was completely on point. It was, interestingly enough, also the only romantic story in the whole collection. So, I kind of liked that it ended on this note. Don’t get me wrong, it was still super and dark like all of the other fairy tale retellings in the collection, but the romantic aspect made it a little more bittersweet and somehow nostalgic… I slightly (but only slightly) softer note to end on.

This was the last story I read before going to bed. And it was kind of perfect. Something about the surreal nature of the storyline and the atmosphere that sweeps you along actually worked really well when I was home alone late at night. The betrayed women late at night, dancing their deathly dance. The mystery of the young girls death… everything combined in such a brilliant way to create an unforgettable tapestry. One which worked in with the dark of outside and the time of the night.

I’m normally fairly good at predicting what is going to happen in the future… not so much in this story. There were enough hints throughout that you’re curiosity was peeked, but I never actually did predict the ending. There were just so many misleading moments throughout. Which of course, moves this to the top of my short story favourites pile… I love being drastically mislead throughout a story!

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Image source: Amazon

3 thoughts on “The Waters of Sorrow by Tanith Lee

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