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  1. GUEST POST: Why we should read classic novels by Melissa Chan Kate Forsyth 21-Oct-2018
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A fairy-tale infused historical novel for adults set in the late 18 th century, moving between Imperial China and France during the ‘Terror’ of the French Revolution, and inspired by the true story of a quest for a blood-red rose.

The novel will draw upon ‘The Blue Rose,’ a fairy tale set in China about a quest for an impossible rose.

Reviews of The Puzzle Ring

Deb Abela:

'A richly told tale of history, magic and intrigue by a wonderful storyteller.'

Aleesah Darlison, The Sun-Herald:

'Kate Forsyth's stories possess a richness of character, an old-worldy charm and a classic adventurism that plunge readers into other realms that are immediately convincing because they are often a small step away from our own world, yet completely fantastical.'

The Skinny, Glasgow:

'A thrilling historical adventure story from the award winning and highly popular Australian writer Kate Forsyth',

Joanne Harris:

'lively, funny and fast-paced'.

Sally Murphy,

'The Puzzle Ring is an absorbing blend of action, fantasy and mystery.'


'What a pleasure to read a fantasy that ticks all the boxes - well-established and convincing characters, a perilous quest, a solid setting and a wonderful blend of contemporary realism, history and Scottish mythology ...a deeply satisfying and exciting whole.' (Magpies Volume 24, may 2009, page 40)
'...a wonderful blend of contemporary realism, history and Scottish mythology.' (Magpies)

The Bookbag:

'(Done) so brilliantly it brings a fresh novelty to the (fantasy) blend, and with such consummate style ... this is one of those blaze-through-it-one-sitting fantasy titles for the young teen audience that I can easily recommend.'
'One of those blaze-through-it-one-sitting fantasy titles'
Boomerang Books:
'Kate Forsyth doesn't (just) write fantasy books, she writes great books'
Kate Forsyth is 'the undisputed queen of Australian fantasy.'

Nyssa Pascoe, A Writer Goes On a Journey:

'For years, Forsyth has been weaving tales of ancient magic. From her very first adult fantasy book to her latest children's novel, she does not weaken the richness of plot, characters, or her poetic sway ... Kate Forsyth's imagination is majestical and this book has turned me into a blubbering fan-girl all over again, and it's more than suspected that'll it'll do the same to other readers, no matter the age.'


'If you like a satisfying mystery that has just enough magic and mayhem to be gripping but isn't hardcore fantasy, then this is an excellent read.'

Rhiannon Hart, YA Books & Writing:

'The Puzzle Ring is the most satisfying (time travel story) I have read since Playing Beatie Bow.'

The Bookette:

'The Puzzle Ring is written in the vein of great traditional fantasies ... a daring magical adventure.'
'a mysterious and magical adventure.'
'a wonderful epic fantasy which will take you on a journey into the past and into the Otherworld. '

I was a teenage book geek:

'Wicked tight plotting, heaps of Scottish charm and a major helping of whimsy combine to make The Puzzle Ring a truly irresistible fantasy. It's a tale of faery, friendship and family with a plucky young heroine, a dark curse and a magic all of its own. In other words, this one's a winner.'
'The Puzzle Ring gives us a beguiling blend of fantasy and historical elements.'
'The Puzzle Ring is a beauty of a book ... You know that welling-up-of-happiness feeling you get when a book's ending fulfils all your hopes and expectations for characters you have come to know and love? The Puzzle Ring has that. It's epic. I wholeheartedly recommend it for younger YA readers and the young at heart.'

Cleverly Inked:

“Amazing! ... truly beautiful written.”

Tales of Whimsy:

“When I woke up the morning after finishing The Puzzle Ring, I felt like I had just returned from a long fantastic voyage in a far away land. I literally woke up ready for adventure.”
'deliciously enchanting'

Wondrous Reads:

'The Puzzle Ring is an exciting story of magic and danger – I loved every minute of it.'

I Want To Read That:

'I just loved it and can't recommend it highly enough. I think I'm now going to have to track down everything Kate Forsyth has written!'

The Book Bug:

'insanely enjoyable and fantastically written ... I'll be recommending it until I die.'

Alan Baxter:

'If you love a good fantasy, this is a great read. If you're a fan of faerie mythology, this is an essential read.'


"a fast-paced time-travelling adventure with a dash of history and magic ... I could hardly put it down"

Katherine Langrish:

'The enchantment combines wildness and charm in a way that reminded me ... of Elizabeth Goudge's classic The Little White Horse.'

'The Puzzle Ring is a splendid mixture of mystery, magic and humour .. (with) genuinely spine-chilling moments.'

Bookworming in the 21st century:

'The Puzzle Ring is a marvelous adventure that mixes Scottish lore and fairy tales with the modern day ... I will definitely be reading more of Kate's novels in the future.

Kerry Hannigan, Travel Beat:

'Kate Forsyth's novel for young teens is a magical blend of mystery and Celtic mythology that barrels along nicely. Young readers ... will doubtless be riveted until the final page.'

Cat, Beyond Books:

'The entire story is enchanting from the first pages ... to its wonderful ending ... a wonderful adventure through time and magic.'

Nayu's Reading Corner:

'Once more Kate Forsyth works her magic in creating a gripping finale to a magical action-packed adventure. I was so happy with the ending that I nearly cried.'

Report from the judges of the 2009 Aurealis Award for Best Teenage Novel:

'The Puzzle Ring is a very age-appropriate finalist with a strong female character lead who travels across time to save her family. The judges were impressed with Forsyth's combination of time travel logic with faery-based fantasy, and also enjoyed the fact that the plot was intertwined with real historical events. Curses can be broken - it just might take some time, and always take some good friends with you. Well put together and engaging.'

My Fluttering Heart:

'Remember the days when Young Adult fantasies weren't encumbered by the doom and gloom of having your boyfriend disintegrate in sunlight, and were purely for the love of great adventure? ... Kate Forsyth's latest book would have had me enthralled at age 10 and kept up reading by torchlight way past the parents' proposed bedtime. The Puzzle Ring is a tale with the sweet curl of the fantastical and a leaping, adventurous spirit.'