Thursday, May 1, 2014

Book Review: Swan Sister edited by Terri Windling and Ellen Datlow (no spoilers)

Book: Swan Sister
Author: Edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling
Publication: March 22nd, 2005
Source: Local Library
Summary (from Goodreads):
Just as fairy-tale magic can transform a loved one into a swan, the contributors to this book have transformed traditional fairy tales and legends into stories that are completely original, yet still tantalizingly familiar.The stories include a Rapunzel whose most confining prison is her loneliness; a contemporary rendering of the Green Man myth; two different versions of Red Riding Hood; a tale that grew out of a Celtic folk song; Sleeping Beauty's experience of her enchantment; two works inspired by the Arabian Nights; and more.

My  Thoughts
Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling were just editors and complilers of this novel so while their role was important the real rock stars are the authors that wrote the retellings featured in this novel.

Swan Sisters is a complitation novel of several different Grimm sized short fairy tale retellings. Most of them stuck pretty close to the original tale they were retelling adding some depth, but then there were stories that still stuck to the original fairy tale, but did it in a whole different way. The ones that impressed me in this book was the retelling of Rapunzel. I didn't even realize it was a Rapunzel retelling until I read it in the author comments afterwards. Then I understood. The other one I really like was the retelling of Sleeping Beauty. I think it was an interest take on Sleeping Beauty's experience that makes it not as miserable. Another one that stuck pretty close to the original tale, but peaked my interest was the retelling of Bluebeard. I actually read the original story of Blue Beard because of this novel. My review will be up on Friday.

A couple I liked, but wasn't wowed by was The Fish's Story. It taught readers not to be selfish. The short story the book is named after Swan Sister is about sisters that love each other, but the little sister is a swan and she is not meant to stay in the human world. The older sister tries to give the little sister, Rachel a full life. I won't spoil the ending, but it is breathtakingly beautiful.

This was my March random read. I considered it a meh read because I was expecting more from it. As per usual with the Grimm fairy tales there was a lack of depth and the many questions went unanswered. Because the stories were so short I didn't form any connection to the characters or any relationship with the story. Swan Sisters was a quick read and I did enjoy it, but I didn't overly love it.

Happy May Day!

Deviant Artists Queens RevengeMifti Stock and Sed Rah .Hosted by The Book Rat and A Backwards Story

Another post for fairy tale fortnight. I didn't manage to read any full retellings, but two books with a bunch of retellings for this fairy tale fortnight. My final post for this year will be up tomorrow.

Hosted by I'm Loving Books

This was not my favorite random read. I considered it a meh book which means I liked it, but didn't love it. 

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