Fairytale Retellings

Posted on March 27, 2021. Filed under: Fiction | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Many of us have grown up reading and cherishing fairytales, which have origins in almost all countries and take on themes such as love, hope, family, and courage. Fairytales have entertained generations of story lovers and continue to do so, making a place in peoples’ hearts and creating a magical reading experience for all readers. Every culture has its own fairytale collection—stories that were strongly influenced by oral traditions and used universal human emotions to weave tales of adventure. Over the years, many authors have created their own stories using certain elements from their favorite fairytales, creating a genre known as fairytale retellings. These may be retellings that adopt core structures from the original tale to create a new story, or these can be re-imaginings that put a fresh spin on an old tale. Below we have listed a few young adult and adult fairytale retelling books in our collection that you may be interested in:

Cinder by Marissa Meyer

“Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth’s fate hinges on one girl…. 

Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She’s a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister’s illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai’s, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world’s future” (Primo).

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden

“Winter lasts most of the year at the edge of the Russian wilderness, and in the long nights, Vasilisa and her siblings love to gather by the fire to listen to their nurse’s fairy tales. Above all, Vasya loves the story of Frost, the blue-eyed winter demon. Wise Russians fear him, for he claims unwary souls, and they honor the spirits that protect their homes from evil.

Then Vasya’s widowed father brings home a new wife from Moscow. Fiercely devout, Vasya’s stepmother forbids her family from honoring their household spirits, but Vasya fears what this may bring. And indeed, misfortune begins to stalk the village. But Vasya’s stepmother only grows harsher, determined to remake the village to her liking and to groom her rebellious stepdaughter for marriage or a convent. As the village’s defenses weaken and evil from the forest creeps nearer, Vasilisa must call upon dangerous gifts she has long concealed to protect her family from a threat that seems to have sprung to life from her nurse’s most frightening tales” (Axis360).

Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson

“In the forbidden woods of Neverland, Tiger Lily falls under the alluring Peter Pan’s spell. She will risk everything—her family, her future—to be with him. But Tiger Lily soon discovers that the most dangerous enemy can live inside even the most loyal and loving heart. From the New York Times bestselling author comes a magical and bewitching story of the romance between a fearless heroine and the boy who wouldn’t grow up” (Primo).

House of Salt and Sorrows by Erin A. Craig

“As one by one her beautiful sisters mysteriously die on their isolated island estate, Annaleigh must unravel the curse that haunts her family. In a manor by the sea, twelve sisters are cursed. Annaleigh lives a sheltered life at Highmoor with her sisters and their father and stepmother. Once there were twelve, but loneliness fills the grand halls now that four of the girls’ lives have been cut short. Each death was more tragic than the last—the plague, a plummeting fall, a drowning, a slippery plunge—and there are whispers throughout the surrounding villages that the family is cursed by the gods.

Disturbed by a series of ghostly visions, Annaleigh becomes increasingly suspicious that her sister’s deaths were no accidents. The girls have been sneaking out every night to attend glittering balls, dancing until dawn in silk gowns and shimmering slippers, and Annaleigh isn’t sure whether to try to stop them or to join their forbidden trysts. Because who—or what—are they really dancing with? When Annaleigh’s involvement with a mysterious stranger who has secrets of his own intensifies, it’s a race to unravel the darkness that has fallen over her family—before it claims her next” (Axis360).

Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik

“Miryem is the daughter and granddaughter of moneylenders, but her father’s inability to collect his debts has left his family on the edge of poverty, until Miryem takes matters into her own hands. Hardening her heart, the young woman sets out to claim what is owed and soon gains a reputation for being able to turn silver into gold.

When an ill-advised boast draws the attention of the king of the Staryk, grim fey creatures who seem more ice than flesh, Miryem’s fate, and that of two kingdoms, will be forever altered. She will face an impossible challenge, and along with two unlikely allies, uncover a secret that threatens to consume the lands of humans and Staryk alike” (Axis360).

Throne of the Crescent Moon by Saladin Ahmed

“The Crescent Moon Kingdoms, home to djenns and ghuls, holy warriors and heretics, are at the boiling point of a power struggle between the iron-fisted Khalif and the mysterious master thief known as the Falcon Prince. In the midst of this brewing rebellion a series of brutal supernatural murders strikes at the heart of the Kingdoms. It is up to a handful of heroes to learn the truth behind these killings.

When they learn that the murders and the Falcon Prince’s brewing revolution are connected, the companions must race against time—and struggle against their own misgivings—to save the life of a vicious despot. In so doing they discover a plot for the Throne of the Crescent Moon that threatens to turn Dhamsawaat, and the world itself, into a blood-soaked ruin” (Primo).

Forest of a Thousand Lanterns by Julie C. Dao

“Beautiful eighteen-year-old Xifeng, raised by a cruel aunt who says the stars destine her to be Empress of Feng Lu, chooses to spurn the man who loves her and exploit the dark magic that can make her dream real” (Primo).

-posted by Huma Abdulaziz


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