February Book Challenge: Fairytale Ending
We are more than a week late in sharing the book challenge for the month…but that makes us no less excited about it.
This month our challenge is “Fairytale Endings”…which means we are reading retellings of fairytales.
This isn’t a genre that I’ve read a lot of but recently have been enjoying.
Below I have a list of retellings that I have read and some that are on my “to read” list.
Let’s start with the retellings that I have read:
Small Favors by Erin A. Craig
I will openly admit that I 100% chose to read this book because of the cover. In fact, when I checked it out I didn’t even have a clue what it was about…the only thing I knew was that the cover was lovely. (Judge me if you must.). However, once I started reading, I found out that the story was just as intriguing as the cover. The story is a fun retelling of Rumpelstiltskin that made for a sweet, light read.
Confessions of an Ugly Step Sister by Gregory Maguire
I listened to this novel last summer as I repainted the junior high classroom I teach art in….and I listened to it only because it was available while I was waiting for a true crime book to become available. But to my surprise it made for the perfect remodel the art room read. It combines art, fairytales, and the tulip trade into a delightful take on a Cinderella tale.
A Tale Dark and Grimm by Adam Gidwitz
This is a book that I didn’t read. Rather, I listened to it with my girls…and it was such a fun story to listen to! We borrowed the audio book from our library and listened to it over the course of a week. The narrator is fantastic and my girls were always so sad when we turned it off for the night.
The story follows Hansel and Gretel as they leave their own story and make their way through several others in a unique retelling. There is a Netflix movie made from the book…but…as most movie adaptations go…it isn’t nearly as good as the book.
Beauty by Robin McKinley
I haven’t read this book for years….but over the past 20 years of working with young adults this novel has been one of the most recommended to me by my teen girls. Beauty is a retelling of Beauty and the Beast. It is a quick read and a cute story.
The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale
The Goose Girl is a slower, longer read. It, of course, is a retelling of the story of “The Goose Girl”. For me this book was only ok but, I think I’m in the minority on this one. I read it as a part of a book club and the other ladies in my group loved it.
The Rumpelstiltskin Problem by Vivian Van Velde
This book tells the story of Rumpelstiltskin in 6 different ways. Sometimes the miller’s daughter comes out on top, other times Rumpelstiltskin takes the day….but each story is unique. I have read it with school classes more than once and it always leads to great discussions. This book is short, including only the 6 short stories, but is a fun, light read that always leaves me wanting to write a version of my own.
Of course, are more than the 6 that I listed but in an effort to keep this post manageable I will stop there and skip now to 4 that are currently on my list to read:
Cinder by Marissa Meyer
My son read this book in high school and he totally enjoyed it. Cinder is a retelling of Cinderella but in this version Cinderella is a mechanic…and a cyborg! Sounds crazy, but he says it was a good read. I have it on hold. I will let you know what I think.
House of Salt and Sorrows by Erin A. Craig
This novel is a take on the story of The Twelve Dancing Princesses. A group of sisters live in a beautiful mansion by the sea where 4 mysterious deaths occur. Murder, rumors, ghosts, dances, haunting….it sounds like my kind of read!
The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert
This novel is set in modern day Manhattan. Alice is a 17 year old girl on the run from bad luck and the fans of her grandmother’s cult classic fairy tale novels. As the book progresses Alice goes on a search to save her mother and travels through a variety of Grimm fairytale retellings.
The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden
This book takes place in mid-evil Russia and tells story of a young girl with special powers who tries to save her family from the dangers in the surrounding forest. Apparently it puts a spin on several different Baba Yaga tales so it should be a good read.
And finally here the fairytale retelling that I started to read this week:
Ginger Bread by Helen Oyeyemi
Gingerbread is inspired by the significance gingerbread holds in many fairy tales especially Hansel and Gretel…at least that is what I’d heard before I started reading. However, I’m almost half way into this novel and I can’t tell you what is going on, who I am rooting for, or where the book is going.
Right now I’m seriously uninvested in the storyline but I plan to finish it up over the weekend and will let you know how things wind up.
So, what fairytale retellings are you going to read?
Which ones have you read?
Which ones have you liked?
And to see a list of all the themes for each month in 2023 just click HERE.