The Piper has always kind of freaked me out from fairy tales. No matter how much the tale has been Disney-fied, it’s still kind of dark and twisted. After all, it’s a man that steals an entire town’s children and skips off into the sunset with them. Plus, I find the sound of a flute a little haunting and creepy.
This is my first every Naomi Novik. I know that there’s been a lot of hype around her work, so I was kind of looking forward to seeing what all the fuss was about. And now I understand the fuss. It is well deserved fuss. This book was amazingly written, incredible fun and seriously intense. For some reason I was kind of expecting a young adult, easy read which would sweep me away to a beautiful, magical kingdom. This is not that book. This is a book about three different women and how they become the strong, independent women they need to be to defeat a great evil.
I seriously love Alice in Wonderland. Or anything that uses themes and imagery from this story. And it’s moved beyond the Lewis Carroll original to something more. As time has moved and the many, many, many retellings have weaved their way into pop culture, the story has taken on more and more of a life of its own. Which is also probably why I love it so much. Each person’s take is amazing. Each aspect of the story that is focused on… but I’ve never read a steampunk retelling of this tale. Until now. And wow.
Pride and Prejudice is one of my absolute favourite classics. It’s the classic that I go to again anda gain when I want to reread something soothing. Actually, it’s the book I probably pick up about once a year when I need my fix. So when I found out that there’s a contemporary retelling of this story which features a Dominican-Haitian girl on the cusp of adulthood, applying for colleges… well, I bought it immediately.
This is a bit of a ranty, ravy type of story. Just one block of text that recounts Heathcliff’s impressions of Cathy and her family as he grew up. That makes his tale a little more tragic. A little more relatable. Even if I still think he’s a douche.
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.
I’ve had this book on my wish list for a very, very long time. So, when I finally managed to find a second hand copy and get it delivered to my door, I couldn’t wait to sink my teeth into it. After all, I love fairy tales, I like stories with a dark twist, and I’m fascinated by retellings and the ways in which people are able to twist and turn classic themes to fit a more contemporary or recognisable setting. Which makes this kind of the perfect short story collection to sit on my shelves.
It’s kind of obvious from the title of this short story that this is a retelling and tale of Hansel and Gretel. But it wasn’t the kind of retelling that I was expecting. From beginning to end this was a bit of a surprise. Immediately I thought that this tale would be one in which the parent would betray her child (like in the original fairy tale).
I began my obsession with Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland in childhood, but kind of forgot about it until the last year – when I finally got around to reading the original story! And then my obsession began to take a bit of a turn for the… well, obsessive… so I bought this collection as soon as I found it. And opened the page within days of receiving it.