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If you are looking for Game of Thrones plotting with complexity, betrayal and pain - this is not your book. If however; you have had enough of "reality" in 2022 and need some myth and magic - pull up a chair/couch and enjoy. The traditional stories are not complicated or involved but told with new perspectives, economy and craft. In each tale the power of making a choice and taking responsibility is shown.
Perfect for summer reading. Or dead-of-winter reading. Or any time you need a few laughs and a little comfort. Only slightly fractured, these retold fairy tales put fresh clothes on old emperors, from Snow White to The Little Mermaid. There are all set in the modern world, but there’s a distinct dearth of wisecracking, first-person heroines with a stake. (I found the change refreshing.) There’s a running theme of “mortality and change versus stasis and perfection” that I really, really liked. “Sure, no one dies in [Fairyland]. But no one lives either. There are no babies born. There is no time…So I chose time.” Family and attachments *matter*, and there’s plenty of magic in mundanity if you pay attention.
This is a fun book with updated takes on fairy tales. The setting is more or less the current world, but many of the stories deal with a fairyland existing parallel to ours. The results range from sweet to fascinating. Several of the stories will leave you feeling that it's dusty in here.
I have read a lot of Sarah Hoyt. She is a solid, accomplished author with a large body of quality work. None of that prepared me for this book, which is full of stories that are deeply moving and simply wonderful. A few of these tales are modern updates of old stories, but many are completely fresh. All of them should be made a permanent part of our cultural lore. The characters are well-drawn and realistic, and every tale fills you with hope and love. If you read this book, you will be very glad you did.
This review is about the printed version of the book. It runs perhaps to 100ish pages. These are variations on familiar fairy tales and each tale is about four pages long. They are great fun and great light reading. None of them turn out quite as expected.
A much needed change of pace in a world full of turmoil and doom porn. These short tales are retold in a simple style, with the original story line changed just enough to fit in today's world but remain true to the essentials. Some unforeseen twists perhaps but always a joy to read.