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Where the Dark Stands Still

"Steeped in Slavic folklore, secrets and gothic romance, this spellbinding twist on Beauty and the Beast sees a girl make a deal with a demon in the deep, dark woods."

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This title will be released on 09/01/2025. Pre-order now.

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LoveReading4Kids Says

LoveReading4Kids Says

Inspired by the author’s love of Slavic mythology and childhood summers in the Polish countryside, Where the Dark Stands Still is an arresting feminist reimagining of Beauty and the Beast. The writing is beautiful — poetic and precise, delicate and mesmerising as a finely-spun web as it tells the story of a girl’s search for freedom from her past, and from her dangerous magic.

Amidst summer solstice celebrations, Liska leaves her village in search of the blooming fern flower that might just save her: “She knows what rumours the villagers whisper: that she is a witch, that she is as wicked as the magic harboured in the spirit wood”. If she finds the flower, she will ask it to grant her wish to be free from the magic that’s long cursed her, with the ultimate aim of proving to her villagers that “she is not dangerous”.

Moments into her quest, Liska encounters the Leszy demon and strikes up a bargain with him. She will spend a year in servitude in his crumbling gothic House Under the Rowan Tree before returning to her village, with her magic gone. But then comes unsettling knowledge — she’s not the first to have done this, and there are other demons to face, too.

Tingling with the tension of desire, secrets and a longing to feel at home, Where the Dark Stands Still possesses the power to make time stand still.

Joanne Owen

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