Review: Impossible

When seventeen-year-old Lucy discovers her family is under an ancient curse by an evil Elfin Knight, she realizes to break the curse she must perform three impossible tasks before her daughter is born in order to save them both.–From Goodreads

Many authors are inspired by music, and it has become increasingly popular for authors to post playlists of the music they listened to while writing each of their books. Nancy Werlin’s Impossible was inspired by the Simon and Garfunkel classic Scarborough Fair:

Are you going to Scarborough Fair
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme
Remember me to one who lives there
She once was a true love of mine

Tell her to make me a cambric shirt
(On the side of a hill in the deep forest green)
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme
(Tracing of sparrow on snowcrested brown)
Without no seams nor needle work
(Blankets and bedclothes the child of the mountain)
Then she’ll be a true love of mine
(Sleeps unaware of the clarion call)

Tell her to find me an acre of land
(On the side of a hill a sprinkling of leaves)
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme
(Washes the grave with silvery tears)
Between the salt water and the sea strands
(A soldier cleans and polishes a gun)
Then she’ll be a true love of mine

Tell her to reap it with a sickle of leather
(War bellows blazing in scarlet battalions)
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme
(Generals order their soldiers to kill)
And gather it all in a bunch of heather
(And to fight for a cause they’ve long ago forgotten)
Then she’ll be a true love of mine

Are you going to Scarborough Fair
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme
Remember me to one who lives there
She once was a true love of mine

The women in Lucy’s family have been cursed. Each gets pregnant with a baby girl at the age of 17, and if unable to complete the Elfin Knight’s impossible tasks, passes the curse on to their daughter. Under the control of the Elfin Knight, they lose their sanity and their free will. When Lucy gets pregnant, she becomes determined to find a way out of this cycle and keep her daughter safe from the Knight’s curse. Can she and her family find a way to make a seamless shirt, find an acre of land between the salt water and the sea strand, and reap it with a single grain of corn? Or will she become just another victim in her family line?

Impossible begins with an intriguing premise rooted in folklore and song. The attempt to blend fantasy and realism falls short at points, and the book is arguably a bit campy, but I don’t mind campy. I couldn’t stop reading to find out how this one ends, and sometimes a quick page-turner is good enough for me.

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