This is an incredibly insane version of Cinderella. Like, seriously insane. One that I absolutely adored. And couldn’t get enough of. And just seriously enjoyed… but it was dark, and made me think of Cinderella (or in this case Ashputtle) as more of a monster than a victim. Which is probably why I loved it so much. Nothing like a sick, disturbing story to make my crazy brain happy.
This was such a beautifully bittersweet storyline. Sleeping Beauty (the Disneyfied version) has always felt a little bittersweet to me. After all, a mistake on her parents’ behalf curses her to a hundred years in sleep. A hundred years in which her loved ones, friends, acquaintances are all unable to live their lives. And it is just the single kiss of a man who is fighting brambles which saves her. In this retelling, Wrede asks just what would happen if the prince were too early or too late? What would happen if the fairy tale just didn’t quite happen the way it was supposed to?
Rumpelstiltskin is one of my preferred fairy tales. There is just something about it that I love, and the fact that it was has been used across many of the different retellings and TV series that I have watched makes it even more thrilling. Which meant that having a Rumpelstiltskin story to open the collection Black Thorn, White Rose made me really happy. It was a great, slightly darker start to these adult fairy tale retellings.