Reading Level: Young Adult
Size: 480 pages
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Release Date: February 25, 2014
Stand Alone or Series: Stand Alone
Source: eGalley from NetGalley.com
Rating: 4/5 stars
I got a copy of this to review through NetGalley, thanks to NetGalley and Harlequin Teen for giving me the opportunity to review this book. I love fairy tale retellings, so I was very excited to see what these stories were all about.
Below you can find brief recaps of each story in the anthology and my rating of it. All of these fairy tale retellings are supposed to be dark fairy tale retellings. Some of the retellings were of more obscure Grimm fairy tales that I had never heard of before. For example the Grimm Brothers The Robber Bridegroom, The Pink, Cat Skin, and The Shroud. It was interesting to read retellings of some less known fairy tales.
My favorites in the book were Figment by Jeri Smith-Ready (a Puss in Boots retelling), The Twelfth-Girl by Malinda Lo (retelling of The 12 Dancing Princesses), The Brothers Piggett by Julie Kagawa (retelling of The Three Little Pigs), Better by Shaun David Hutchinson (wonderful sci-fi retelling of The Pied Piper), and A Real Boy by Claudia Gray (Pinocchio retelling).
I have read most of these authors before but was introduced to a couple new authors I would love to read more from. I absolutely adored Shaun David Hutchinson’s retelling and will be checking to see what else he has written. I have never read anything by Sarah Rees Brennan, but her story of The Beauty and the Chad was hilarious and really well done.
Overall a decent collection of fairy tale retellings. Like most anthologies it is a bit hit and miss, however if you enjoy fairy tale retellings I definitely recommend picking this up. There are some retellings of some more obscure fairy tales and it was fun to read and learn about those. See below for list of stories and story ratings.
The Key by Rachel Hawkins (3/5 stars)
A retelling of Bluebeard, I wans’t a big fan of this story. It’s about a girl whose mom is a psychic. It was very short and very predictable.
Figment by Jeri Smith-Ready (5/5 stars)
A retelling of Puss in Boots. Very sweet story about a struggling musician who gets a magical stuffed cat when his father dies. Very hopeful, creative, and interesting.
The Twelfth-Girl by Malinda Lo (5/5 stars)
Retelling of The 12 Dancing Princesses I loved this and wish it had been a full length book! There are so many engaging and interesting things going on in this story and it was absolutely beautifully written.
The Raven Princess by Jon Skovron (4/5 stars)
A retelling of The Raven. This was a very nice classic fairy tale story with an excellent twist at the end.
Thinner than Water by Saundra Mitchell (4/5 stars)
A retelling of Cat Skin, similar to Cinderella. Beautifully written story, but disturbing as well (incest, rape, and violence).
Before the Rose Bloomed by Ellen Hopkins (3/5 stars)
Retelling of the snow queen. I thought it was a bit dry and boring. I didn’t really like the character much and thought it wasn’t all that creative.
Beast/Beast by Tessa Gratton (4/5 stars)
Retelling of Beauty and the Beast. Beautifully written but not all that creative.
The Brothers Piggett by Julie Kagawa (5/5 stars)
Retelling of the three little pigs…I really loved this retelling and enjoyed how the wolf was depicted! This fairy tale has definitely been twisted around by Kagawa and it was great!
Untethered by Sonia Gensler (4/5 stars)
Retelling of The Shroud. I enjoyed it. I liked the twist of how the story was told and thought it was well written.
Better by Shaun David Hutchinson (5/5 stars)
Retelling of the Pied Piper. I would have loved to read a whole book about this. This is beautifully written, very creative, and was set in a wonderfully imagined sci-fi world. Really excellent. I loved the twist at the end.
Light it Up by Kimberly Derting (4/5 stars)
Retelling of Hansel and Gretel. This was super creepy in a very serial killer type way. It was well written and overall I really enjoyed it.
Sharper than a Serpent’s Tongue by Christine Johnson (4/5 stars)
Retelling of Diamonds and Toads. I enjoyed reading this but didn’t think it was spectacular or all that unique.
A Real Boy by Claudia Gray (5/ 5 stars)
Spectacular retelling of Pinocchio that is set in the future. This had a very iRobot feel to it, but also some romance. Incredibly well written, better than anything else I have read by Claudia…I really loved this. I would love to read a book in this world.
Skin Trade by Myra McEntire (3/5 stars)
Retelling of The Robber Bridegroom. Very creepy story about a group of boys who kidnap girls, peel off their skin, and eat them. It was okay.
Beauty and the Chad by Sarah Rees Brennan (4/5 stars)
Another Beauty and the Beast retelling. This was a very cute retelling of Beauty of the Beast. It was by far the funniest and most heart-warming story of the bunch, I really enjoyed it.
The Pink by Amanda Hocking (4/5 stars)
Beautifully written retelling of the Carnation or the Pink. It wasn’t all that creative, a pretty straight forward retelling, but it was well written and I enjoyed the happy ending.
Sell Out by Jackson Pearce (4/5 stars)
Most likely a twisted up retelling of Snow White. This was an interesting story about a boy who has the power to revive the dead with a kiss. This was a sweet and short story.
This book goes towards the following reading challenges:
– Ebook Reading Challenge
– Chunkster Reading Challenge (450+ pages)
– Fairy Tales Retold Reading Challenge
– You Read How Many Books? Reading Challenge
– 100 Books in a Year Reading Challenge