the guardian Fri 22 May 2009
Shaw has worked the great tradition of European fairy tales and come up with an ingenious story so deft it defies the obvious label "quirky". Set on a fictional northern archipelago, the world conjured up is one of frozen beauty with small Arctic creatures melting into the snowbound woods. Into this landscape steps Ida MacLaird, whose body, beginning with her carefully concealed feet, is inexplicably turning to glass. Photographer Midas, estranged from his reclusive mother, is fixated on his hated father's suicide. Falling tentatively in love with Ida, he embarks on a desperate quest to save her. The key to Ida's predicament lies with the mysterious Henry, and the lovers are further thwarted by Ida's sinister, self-appointed guardian. A magical fable of fate and resignation.