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Once Upon A Time... ...in the faraway land of Story, a Hugo-winning Editor realized that no one had collected together the fairy tales of the age, and that doorstopthick anthologies of modern fairy tales were sorely lacking... And so the Editor ventured forth, wandering the land of Story from shore to shore, climbing massive mountains of books and delving deep into lush, li Once Upon A Time... ...in the faraway land of Story, a Hugo-winning Editor realized that no one had collected together the fairy tales of the age, and that doorstopthick anthologies of modern fairy tales were sorely lacking... And so the Editor ventured forth, wandering the land of Story from shore to shore, climbing massive mountains of books and delving deep into lush, literary forests, gathering together thirty-three of the best re-tellings of fairy tales he could find. Not just any fairy tales, mind you, but tantalizing tales from some of the biggest names in today’s fantastic fiction, authors like Gregory Maguire, Susanna Clarke, Charles de Lint, Holly Black, Alethea Kontis, Kelly Link, Neil Gaiman, Patricia Briggs, Paul Di Filippo, Gregory Frost, and Nancy Kress. But these stories alone weren’t enough to satisfy the Editor, so the Editor ventured further, into the dangerous cave of the fearsome Bill Willingham, and emerged intact with a magnificent introduction, to tie the collection together. And the inhabitants of Story—from the Kings and Queens relaxing in their castles to the peasants toiling in the fields, from the fey folk flitting about the forests to the trolls lurking under bridges and the giants in the hills—read the anthology, and enjoyed it. And they all lived... ...Happily Ever After.


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Once Upon A Time... ...in the faraway land of Story, a Hugo-winning Editor realized that no one had collected together the fairy tales of the age, and that doorstopthick anthologies of modern fairy tales were sorely lacking... And so the Editor ventured forth, wandering the land of Story from shore to shore, climbing massive mountains of books and delving deep into lush, li Once Upon A Time... ...in the faraway land of Story, a Hugo-winning Editor realized that no one had collected together the fairy tales of the age, and that doorstopthick anthologies of modern fairy tales were sorely lacking... And so the Editor ventured forth, wandering the land of Story from shore to shore, climbing massive mountains of books and delving deep into lush, literary forests, gathering together thirty-three of the best re-tellings of fairy tales he could find. Not just any fairy tales, mind you, but tantalizing tales from some of the biggest names in today’s fantastic fiction, authors like Gregory Maguire, Susanna Clarke, Charles de Lint, Holly Black, Alethea Kontis, Kelly Link, Neil Gaiman, Patricia Briggs, Paul Di Filippo, Gregory Frost, and Nancy Kress. But these stories alone weren’t enough to satisfy the Editor, so the Editor ventured further, into the dangerous cave of the fearsome Bill Willingham, and emerged intact with a magnificent introduction, to tie the collection together. And the inhabitants of Story—from the Kings and Queens relaxing in their castles to the peasants toiling in the fields, from the fey folk flitting about the forests to the trolls lurking under bridges and the giants in the hills—read the anthology, and enjoyed it. And they all lived... ...Happily Ever After.

30 review for Happily Ever After

  1. 5 out of 5

    Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books)

    Overall, I found this anthology disappointing. The ratio of stories I didn't like or was indifferent about was higher than the ones I liked or loved. I really, really hated the Peter Straub story. I don't usually have that severe a negative reaction to stories/books, but this is one of them. On the other hand, I loved the Patricia Briggs and Michelle West stories. In between were some clever and enjoyable stories mixed in with the ones I disliked. I could probably come up with a very exact ratin Overall, I found this anthology disappointing. The ratio of stories I didn't like or was indifferent about was higher than the ones I liked or loved. I really, really hated the Peter Straub story. I don't usually have that severe a negative reaction to stories/books, but this is one of them. On the other hand, I loved the Patricia Briggs and Michelle West stories. In between were some clever and enjoyable stories mixed in with the ones I disliked. I could probably come up with a very exact rating if I did the math, but I think I'll settle for a 3 star rating and move onto the next book. As a mini-review, I have to keep this short. My advice is to check this out of the library unless you are a completist for any of the authors within. I believe that many are not new to this volume, so you might be able to find them elsewhere. It's going to be difficult writing a full review of this one. Sigh. Reviewed for Bitten by Books. http://bittenbybooks.com.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Beth Anne

    ebook. thanks dave, for the book recommend. i loved this anthology, it was amazing...better than amazing. perhaps because i love fantasy and fairy tales so much, i approached this book with more gusto than most...but i'm so glad i did. i couldn't put it down. i loooved it. a few of my favorite stories i'd like to comment on: Susanna Clarke - "Mr Simonelli or the Fairy Widower" -- i am a huge fan of Clarke’s writing. I think she has an amazing way of writing a magical story with intensity and intrigu ebook. thanks dave, for the book recommend. i loved this anthology, it was amazing...better than amazing. perhaps because i love fantasy and fairy tales so much, i approached this book with more gusto than most...but i'm so glad i did. i couldn't put it down. i loooved it. a few of my favorite stories i'd like to comment on: Susanna Clarke - "Mr Simonelli or the Fairy Widower" -- i am a huge fan of Clarke’s writing. I think she has an amazing way of writing a magical story with intensity and intrigue…and this story is no exception. She’s created a mystical world told through the diary entries of a young village Rector so well. It’s not to miss. Theodora Goss – “The Rose in Twelve Petals” – a retake on the story of Sleeping Beauty…told by various characters in the story (including the spinning wheel itself), this simply but beautifully written tale captures all you could hope for in a fairy tale. Holly Black – “The Night Market” – bringing me into the world of a Philippino fairytale that I am unfamiliar with, Black writes the story of two sisters and and enkanto…great stuff Wil McCarthy – “He Died That Day, In Thirty Years” – this was one of my favorite stories in the collection. A reimagined updated Alice in Wonderland, this story really blew my mind when I got to the end of it. Neil Gaiman (duh) – The Troll Bridge – told in classic Gaiman prose, this story brought a desperate human element to the Billy Goats Gruff story. It always makes me happy to read Gaiman. Michelle West – “The Rose Garden” – great imagining of Beauty and The Beast in modern times. Another sad story that twists and turns and ends up leaving the reader captivated and wishing there were more. Susan Wade – “Like A Red, Red Rose” – another favorite of mine…this story brings elements of multiple fairy/magic stories into it and brings a while new sad, exciting story to the table. Josh Rountree – “Chasing America” – surprised that I loved this one so much. It’s a simple story about Paul Bunyan…and who he really was, not how he was portrayed in all our classic folk stories. Perhaps I liked this because it was set in the quiet west…perhaps because it was written so darn well. Overall, I can’t wait to start exploring some of these authors solo works, now that I’ve gotten a taste of these stories. This was one of the most enjoyable books I’ve read in a really really long time.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Marquise

    For an anthology with so many big names in it, the quality of the stories included is average for the most part, and some are mediocre. There was none for me that could be called outstanding, thought I did like The Rose Garden by Michelle West, which was the one story a notch above the rest and that I'd rate 3.5 stars. For an anthology with so many big names in it, the quality of the stories included is average for the most part, and some are mediocre. There was none for me that could be called outstanding, thought I did like The Rose Garden by Michelle West, which was the one story a notch above the rest and that I'd rate 3.5 stars.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Casey

    For the most part I really enjoyed this collection. My Favorites were The Price- Patricia Briggs Blood and Waster- Alethea Knotis The Rose in 12 Petals- Theodora Goss Like a Red Red Rose - Susan Wade The Rose Garden - Michelle West The rest of the Stories that I liked were The Troll Bridge- Neil Gaiman The Night Market- Holly Black The Return of the Dark Children- Rober Coover The Root of the Matter- Gregory Frost My Life as a Bird - Charles De Lint The Little Magic Shop - Bruce Sterling The Red Path - Jim C For the most part I really enjoyed this collection. My Favorites were The Price- Patricia Briggs Blood and Waster- Alethea Knotis The Rose in 12 Petals- Theodora Goss Like a Red Red Rose - Susan Wade The Rose Garden - Michelle West The rest of the Stories that I liked were The Troll Bridge- Neil Gaiman The Night Market- Holly Black The Return of the Dark Children- Rober Coover The Root of the Matter- Gregory Frost My Life as a Bird - Charles De Lint The Little Magic Shop - Bruce Sterling The Red Path - Jim C Hines The Farmer's Cat - Jeff VanderMeer And in their Glad Rags - Genevieve Valentine

  5. 5 out of 5

    Kayleen

    Artwork was beautiful. Read: Introduction, Bill Willingham. I'm a big fan of his Fable series, and was really looking forward to what he had to say about fairy tales and such, but his introduction I have to say is one of the worst that I've ever read. It consists of four short paragraphs, where he even admits that he's no good with writing introductions; then why was he picked? His story, that he had after his irritatingly short introduction, was pretty good. But I would have liked it a lot better Artwork was beautiful. Read: Introduction, Bill Willingham. I'm a big fan of his Fable series, and was really looking forward to what he had to say about fairy tales and such, but his introduction I have to say is one of the worst that I've ever read. It consists of four short paragraphs, where he even admits that he's no good with writing introductions; then why was he picked? His story, that he had after his irritatingly short introduction, was pretty good. But I would have liked it a lot better if it was a real story and not something that was just created for the other stories. A Night in the Lonesome November, is told through Willingham's own eyes, and tells of a stranger trying to kill him because he has told secrets of the fairies through his stories. Willingham weaseled his way out of his own death by promising he would bring all of the other authors that have told fairy secrets in their own stories together in one place, so that he could kill them all at once and be done with it. He wrote after the story ya know something like: here it is= stupid. (All together 2 stars) Almost forgot Willingham also wrote something about each author before the stories began; loved that, and they were all very well put together. (4 stars, not counting it with everything else.) The Seven Stage a Comeback, Gregory Maguire. I was going to read this but then discovered that it was written as a play. I've never read one before, its not really my thing now that I've tried it. (2 stars) The Sawing Boys, Genevieie Valentine. There is no author introduction about her, I'm guessing she is a newbie. It was an ok tale, a bit boring here and there. (2 stars) The Black Fairy's Curse, Karen Joy Fowler. A re-telling of Sleeping Beauty. It's really short, about three pages long. I like the beginning a lot, but it started to fall after the second part and couldn't seem to pick itself back up. But still good enough to make me interested in looking into her other work. (3 stars) The Night Market, Holly Black. Mostly everything in this collection are re-telling of old fairy tales by the Grimm brother or Andersen, but Black as usual does something different. Her story is an old widely unknown Philippines fairytale re-told, or at least that is what Willingham says in his introduction about Black. This one is one of my, if not my favorite from this book. I don't want to give anything away, but lets just say there is a girl, her sick sister, and an elf that shouldn't be trusted, but ends up in someones heart. I love that Black is expanding her creatures in her work. (4 stars) Snow in Summer, Jane Yolen. A re-telling of Snow White. Have yet to read much of Yolens work, but this one caught me eye because I love Snow White and was curious to see how she would do her version. It was ok, actually pretty childish. (2 stars) The Fairy Handbag, Kelly Link. I've heard great things about her, even by other authors, but until this book I've never read anything of hers. I'm for sure going to read more of her stuff in the future; she kind of reminds me of Holly Blacks writing style. Major cliff hanger, way wasn't anything resolved? Her Grandmother, Zofia, was so cool. Hope there's more where this came from. (4 stars) Ashputtle, Peter Straub. Willingham wrote that Straubs new version of Cinderella was 'chilling and disturbing.' So I was excited to read it, but found nothing of the sort. It was more of a bizarre tale of a fat old school teacher than possibly was killing or eating some students; it was really late when I read this so I might be missing a lot of the story line. (2 stars) Little Red, Wendy Wheeler. I tried reading the hole story, but just couldn't, didn't even bothering to read the end. The main guy was a pervert; he liked a fourteen year old girl that was the daughter of the married women he was fucking; nasty. (1 star) The Troll Bridge, Neil Gaiman. I read this already earlier this year; didn't bother to reread it; still remember all of it. (4 stars) The Price, Patricia Briggs. A retelling of Rumpelstitlskin, I think I liked like this version better than the original. Makes me really want to read more of Briggs' work. The ending is perfect. (4 stars) Like a red, red rose, Susan Wade. By the title you might think that it is another Snow White retelling, but as far as I could tell it is very different from that tale and any other I've read. This story I think is the one that stuck with me the most, it's not necessarily better than the other ones that I really liked. It just got stuck in my head; I think it was because of the tree and because it made my imagination start running with new ideas. Will have to remember to look her up also. (4 stars, if not more) I really hope Willingham never does an introduction again; everything else was perfect, more or less.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Carol

    Fairy Tales Retold is the unofficial subtitle on the cover. I borrowed this book to read the Neil Gaiman and Patricia Briggs stories. I felt like I had to read the rest also to see if I could find a new author. I was only fond of a few. The anthology doesn't feel edited at all. It seems as if Klima just took whatever was sent in and put it in no particular order. Some of these should have probably been rejected. Book is too long with so-so stories. It also wasn't proofread. I may want to check o Fairy Tales Retold is the unofficial subtitle on the cover. I borrowed this book to read the Neil Gaiman and Patricia Briggs stories. I felt like I had to read the rest also to see if I could find a new author. I was only fond of a few. The anthology doesn't feel edited at all. It seems as if Klima just took whatever was sent in and put it in no particular order. Some of these should have probably been rejected. Book is too long with so-so stories. It also wasn't proofread. I may want to check out Susanna Clarke, Jim Hines, Wil McCarthy, Michelle West, Kelly Link, and Susan Wade. I'll continue to read the fabulous Patricia Briggs and probably Gaiman. The Seven Stage a Comeback - Bill Willingham - a twist on Snow White, set in the form of a play, okay And in Their Glad Rags - Genevieve Valentine -- Red Riding Hood twist, I didn't "get" it all. Interesting. The Sawing Boys - Howard Waldrop -- music contest, scammers or grifters, con artists, meh Bear It Away - Michael Cadnum -- Goldilocks, meh Mr Simonelli or the Fairy Widower - Susanna Clarke -- Faeries and a Reverend/Faery. Interesting. Unpleasant Reverend and faery. The Black Fairy's Curse - Karen Joy Fowler -- Sleeping Beauty My Life as a Bird - Charles de Lint -- Woman writes graphic novels, meets dwarf-life man, good story. The Night Market - Holly Black -- East Asian fairy tale I really liked it. The Rose in Twelve Petals - Theodora Goss -- Sleeping Beauty, weird The Red Path - Jim C. Hines -- Red Riding Hood, great story Blood and Water - Alethea Kontis --The Little Mermaid Hansel's Eyes - Garth Nix -- Hansel and Gretel He Died that Day, in Thirty Years - Wil McCarthy -- Has an Alice-in-Wonderland feel, interesting. Science fiction-y. Snow in Summer - Jane Yolen -- Snow White, good-ish The Rose Garden - Michelle West -- Beauty and the Beast -- Loved it. The Little Magic Shop - Bruce Sterling -- Fountain of Youth, bleah Black Feather - K. Tempest Bradford -- Seven Swans, interesting version Fifi's Tail - Alan Rodgers -- mix of Riding Hood's wolf, Snow White, Hansel and Gretel - fun story The Faery Handbag - Kelly Link -- Faeries, of course. Great and original story! Ashputtle - Peter Straub -- Cinderella, eww The Emperor's New (and Improved) Clothes - Leslie What -- brief Pinocchio's Diary - Robert J. Howe -- Deeply disturbing version Little Red - Wendy Wheeler -- Disturbing also The Troll Bridge - Neil Gaiman -- Always love his stories. The Price - Patricia Briggs -- Wonderful Rumpelstiltskin version. Ailoura - Paul di Fillippo -- Science fiction version of Puss in Boots The Farmer's Cat - Jeff VanderMeer -- Party trolls The Root of the Matter - Gregory Frost -- Rapunzel Like a Red, Red Rose - Susan Wade -- Witches, love. Pretty good. Chasing America - Josh Rountree -- Good Paul Bunyan story Stalking Beans - Nancy Kress -- Jack in the Beanstalk, no fun Big Hair - Esther Friesner -- Rapunzel in beauty contests, good The Return of the Dark Children - Robert Coover -- The Pied Piper, as it says, dark Yuck Bloody hell. This took way too long to review to note.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Heather Wickett

    There is something about short story collections that cause me to read at a snails pace. I suppose I think of them as mini books (should I?) which I consume and then must rest afterward; when I don't really need to, especially when the beginning, middle, climax and ending take up fewer than 20 pages. Short stories are in that grey area of literature, for me, that also houses the shorter novellas and poetry - not for the length, or not explained away so easily. In many of these stories, I found w There is something about short story collections that cause me to read at a snails pace. I suppose I think of them as mini books (should I?) which I consume and then must rest afterward; when I don't really need to, especially when the beginning, middle, climax and ending take up fewer than 20 pages. Short stories are in that grey area of literature, for me, that also houses the shorter novellas and poetry - not for the length, or not explained away so easily. In many of these stories, I found what could be called the perfect short story form (Little Red, the Price, the Troll Bridge, And in Their Glad Rags, The Night Market, Mr Simonelli and the Faerie Widower) in they nabbed ones interest with a succinct but informative intro, had just enough information to move the story in the middle, and ended with the inevitable slight vaguery of a short story. Often I find short stories are on the tightrope of trying to outsmart their reader in terms of what they say and what they do not say - sometimes this works and other times it makes no sense! Some especially were very flashy but upon really trying to figure what they meant, I have a feeling the author would just shrug and say 'It's up to interpretation' which is code for 'I don't know, but making Little Red Riding Hood the daughter of a shapeshifter and uber christian sounded weird enough...'. Oh, and Blood and Water which was a great, sad, creepy Little Mermaid sendoff. Hans Christen Andersen would be proud (and would probably cry).

  8. 4 out of 5

    Amanda Hupe

    I have always loved fairy tales, mythology, folklore and legends. I loved the magic of it all. When I was in college, I took several fairy tale and folklore classes. (Yes, those classes exist.) We studied all different varieties of the classic fairy tales. We would write papers, analyzing each one and comparing it to different cultures. We also read several revisionist tales. I fell in love with those too. Gregory Maguire, author of Wicked:The Life and Times of The Wicked Witch of the West becam I have always loved fairy tales, mythology, folklore and legends. I loved the magic of it all. When I was in college, I took several fairy tale and folklore classes. (Yes, those classes exist.) We studied all different varieties of the classic fairy tales. We would write papers, analyzing each one and comparing it to different cultures. We also read several revisionist tales. I fell in love with those too. Gregory Maguire, author of Wicked:The Life and Times of The Wicked Witch of the West became one of my favorite fairy tale revisionist authors! I had most of his books and found out he was going to have a short story in a Fairy Tale Retold collection. I pre-ordered Happily Ever After edited by John Klima. Well, it’s been about 6 years and I finally got around to reading it. Check out the rest of my review at amandasbookreviewsite.wordpress.com

  9. 4 out of 5

    Derrick

    Eeeeeuuuuggghh. This is an anthology consisting of 34 short retellings of fairy tales. One of which, I was actually quite fond of (the first one), and the rest were all somewhere between awful, awfully boring, less than okay, and there were a few, very few, that were really not that bad, but not great. The one that I did quite like was "The Seven Stage a Comeback" by Gregory Maguire. Obviously a retelling of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. The story starts out after Snow White has left the dwa Eeeeeuuuuggghh. This is an anthology consisting of 34 short retellings of fairy tales. One of which, I was actually quite fond of (the first one), and the rest were all somewhere between awful, awfully boring, less than okay, and there were a few, very few, that were really not that bad, but not great. The one that I did quite like was "The Seven Stage a Comeback" by Gregory Maguire. Obviously a retelling of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. The story starts out after Snow White has left the dwarfs high and dry and ran off with the prince. This is one that I expected to enjoy since it was written by Maguire who I am a recent fan of, and I did. It was a little dark, and even a little depressing, but it was still fun. And the best part, only because so many of the other stories completely failed in this regard, is that it maintained the world of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. It was actually pretty damn good. Some other ones were okay as well, not all that memorable though, especially since I cold only handle a few, sometimes one, stories at a time, so this book took a VERY long time to get through. I do remember actually liking one about Hansel and Gretel called "Hansel's Eyes" by Garth Nix. Otherwise they were mostly disappointing. One that I was really surprised by was a story about a troll by Neil Gaiman. I was expecting a knock-out from him, and I couldn't wait to get to his story because I really needed a knock-out, but I was disappointed and bored by his story. Gaiman and Maguire were the only authors in this anthology that I had ever read before, so I didn't have any real expectations for the other authors, but I mean, I did expect it to be better. I think maybe just anthologies might not be for me. As short as most of them were, I wanted things to start happening in the stories a lot sooner than they did. These are stories filled with description and setting, especially at the first, and I didn't understand because a lot of these were VERY short. Skip some of the scene-setting! Anyways, just not for me. No thank you. Glad I tried it though, because now I know. Also there was one I just really didn't like that I have to point out and that was "And In Their Glad Rags." It was The Great Gatsby meets Red Riding Hood, and it was so bizarre, I just didn't understand the appeal at all. And I like bizarre as in like John Dies at the End bizarro lit, but this was just stretching it. Why would those elements be put together. But apparently it's just me, because I kept going to the other reviews on here, basically after every story I read, to try and get some insight on why people liked these bu I just don't get it still. So try it for yourself, but it was not even close to my cup of tea.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Chris

    Happily Ever After is a pretty hefty tome. It's a short story anthology edited by John Klima and featuring authors such as Gregory Maguire, Susanna Clarke, Patricia Briggs, and Charles de Lint. The short stories are retellings, interpretations and variations on classic fairy and folk tales. On to the stars, Selection: The vast majority of these stories are well told and well picked. Unfortunately, a couple of them fall extraordinarily flat. The great thing about anthologies, though, is that it's o Happily Ever After is a pretty hefty tome. It's a short story anthology edited by John Klima and featuring authors such as Gregory Maguire, Susanna Clarke, Patricia Briggs, and Charles de Lint. The short stories are retellings, interpretations and variations on classic fairy and folk tales. On to the stars, Selection: The vast majority of these stories are well told and well picked. Unfortunately, a couple of them fall extraordinarily flat. The great thing about anthologies, though, is that it's only a few short pages until the next work. Star. Diversity: Here, Klima did a fantastic job. There are plenty of different takes on the classic fairy tale, including classic fairy tale. We're also treated to the fairy tale as Science Fiction, as Urban Fantasy, as Alternate History, Horror and more. Star. Variation: We've been telling fairy tales for centuries. It is particularly hard to keep a story fresh after that long, but these authors do an amazing job. Even with several retellings of the same classics like Snow White and Cinderalla. Even with that repetition, the authors all bring fresh eyes and styles to these classics. Star. Flow: This is especially important for anthologies, and Happily Ever After does a very good job. The collection starts pretty light but grows increasingly dark. In addition, the stories tend to compliment one another well between each author. Klima does a good job of giving us a break after something particularly intense to catch our breath and building up to some fantastic stories. Star. Overall: This anthology was exceptionally enjoyable from beginning to end. It was especially enjoyable to read such a well thought out and put together collection of stories on a theme that hasn't been done to death yet seems so familiar. There were a couple of hiccups, but they never detracted from the overall experience. There's a lot of style, variation, and interesting hooks to make Happily Ever After a fantastic read. Star.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Miss Clark

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. As it is with so many anthologies, there is good, enjoyable, bad and those oh-so-special "Where is the bleach so I can get this story out of my mind?" stories. This was an "adult" fairytale anthology and it most certainly is not all about the HEA ending. Most of them are dark and depressing, with an unwelcome and heavy dose of sexually explicit content. Sexual sin and encounters were a staple of classic fairytales but they never felt the need to graphically detail those encounters. *shudders* Tru As it is with so many anthologies, there is good, enjoyable, bad and those oh-so-special "Where is the bleach so I can get this story out of my mind?" stories. This was an "adult" fairytale anthology and it most certainly is not all about the HEA ending. Most of them are dark and depressing, with an unwelcome and heavy dose of sexually explicit content. Sexual sin and encounters were a staple of classic fairytales but they never felt the need to graphically detail those encounters. *shudders* Truly, the more "adult" books I read, the less I respect them. They remind me of those awful fanfiction stories that are only about sex and nothing else. That is not STORY. It is not literature. And I don't want to read it. That said, these few were readable:(if their novels are similar, I would not mind picking a few up) OKAY The Seven Stage a Comeback by Gregory Maguire And in Their Glad Rags by Genevieve Valentine The Emperor's New (And Improved) Clothes by Leslie What Black Feather by K. Tempest Bradford LIKED Fifi's Tale by Alan Rodgers The Faery Handbag by Kelly Link Hansel's Eyes by Garth Nix Snow in Summer by Jane Yolen BEST The Rose Garden by Michelle West The Price by Patricia Briggs

  12. 5 out of 5

    Res

    This collection of fairy-tale-inspired stories has a disturbing preoccupation with the sexual victimization of girls and very young women. Obviously that thread runs under the surface of fairy tales, too -- but in fairy tales, girls survive, using such tools as seemed plausible in the times the tales were told; it would have been nice to see the girls in the modern retellings do the same. Kelly Link's "The Faerie Handbag" and Susanna Clarke's "Mr. Simonelli or the Fairy Widower" are quite nice, This collection of fairy-tale-inspired stories has a disturbing preoccupation with the sexual victimization of girls and very young women. Obviously that thread runs under the surface of fairy tales, too -- but in fairy tales, girls survive, using such tools as seemed plausible in the times the tales were told; it would have been nice to see the girls in the modern retellings do the same. Kelly Link's "The Faerie Handbag" and Susanna Clarke's "Mr. Simonelli or the Fairy Widower" are quite nice, and they were quite nice in the last collection I read them in, and in the one before that, and in the one before that. I enjoyed: - "The Price," Patricia Briggs' romantic retelling of Rumpelstiltskin. - "Troll Bridge," Neil Gaiman's contemporary troll tale - Karen Joy Fowler's "The Black Fairy's Curse," which actually makes Sleeping Beauty interesting - Howard Waldrop's "The Sawing Boys," deeply weird but very funny - Theodora Goss's beautiful and complicated "The Rose in Twelve Petals" - Bruce Sterling's "The Little Magic Shop," whose hero wins all by pure mundanity.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Danny

    As with any anthology, there's good parts and bad parts, but I like the idea of it. I just don't have the patience to sort through it right now so I cherry-picked some authors and stories that I really wanted to read. Unfortunately, two of the stories by authors I enjoy (Susanna Clarke and Neil Gaiman) were previously published, which means I'd already read them. But I did read a really cool re-telling of Little Red Riding Hood set in the 1920s ("And In Their Glad Rags" by Genevieve Valentine), a As with any anthology, there's good parts and bad parts, but I like the idea of it. I just don't have the patience to sort through it right now so I cherry-picked some authors and stories that I really wanted to read. Unfortunately, two of the stories by authors I enjoy (Susanna Clarke and Neil Gaiman) were previously published, which means I'd already read them. But I did read a really cool re-telling of Little Red Riding Hood set in the 1920s ("And In Their Glad Rags" by Genevieve Valentine), and Kelly Link's story about a magical bag in which an entire village lives was exceedingly awesome. So there you go. Lovers of fairy tales (or faery...or tails I suppose) should find something to love here.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Greymalkin

    Well that took freakin' forever. There are some really wonderful stories in here but a lot of surprisingly pedestrian ones. Not bad necessarily but kinda...unmemorable. I really liked the one sci-fi spin on Puss in Boots, which really created a whole living breathing world in just a few pages and also managed to still stay recognizably Puss in Boots. It wasn't horrible but it was effortful to get through and that is a really bad sign. I guess I was spoiled after Datlow's Tails of Wonder and Imag Well that took freakin' forever. There are some really wonderful stories in here but a lot of surprisingly pedestrian ones. Not bad necessarily but kinda...unmemorable. I really liked the one sci-fi spin on Puss in Boots, which really created a whole living breathing world in just a few pages and also managed to still stay recognizably Puss in Boots. It wasn't horrible but it was effortful to get through and that is a really bad sign. I guess I was spoiled after Datlow's Tails of Wonder and Imagination which had some really amazing stories and I couldn't wait to read the next one to see what crazy direction it would go.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Robin

    Perusing the fantasy section at my local bookstore, I saw this book and let out a fangirl squee that had people across the store staring. Gregory Maguire? Neil Gaiman? Garth Nix?!?! If Terry Pratchett had been in here I would have died of nerdgasm. I haven't read this book all the way through (it's a collection and not really meant to be read like that) but I've read several stories I've loved, and many more that were pretty great. The stories are in turns hilarious and haunting, and it's overal Perusing the fantasy section at my local bookstore, I saw this book and let out a fangirl squee that had people across the store staring. Gregory Maguire? Neil Gaiman? Garth Nix?!?! If Terry Pratchett had been in here I would have died of nerdgasm. I haven't read this book all the way through (it's a collection and not really meant to be read like that) but I've read several stories I've loved, and many more that were pretty great. The stories are in turns hilarious and haunting, and it's overall a wonderful addition to my library. I'd recommend it to any fantasy fan, especially if you like a splash of dark and twisted with your morning tea.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Kristen

    Just like all short story books, some stories stand out more than others. The one I was happiest about was Charles de Lint's. It made me miss his Newford novels (it feels like it's been entirely too long since a new one has come out), and the character's writings on religion were so spot on. Michelle West's 'The Rose Garden' was a nice play on the 'Beauty and the Beast' tale. I liked the Harry Potter references. :) There were a number of stories that I had read before and a few that just really did Just like all short story books, some stories stand out more than others. The one I was happiest about was Charles de Lint's. It made me miss his Newford novels (it feels like it's been entirely too long since a new one has come out), and the character's writings on religion were so spot on. Michelle West's 'The Rose Garden' was a nice play on the 'Beauty and the Beast' tale. I liked the Harry Potter references. :) There were a number of stories that I had read before and a few that just really didn't interest me. Overall, a good collection.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

    All of your favorite fairy tail writers in one place. This is a stunning collection of stories that just happens to featured some of my favorite authors. How was I supposed to resist? The introduction alone is worth the money. Why you ask? Because the intro itself is a fairy tale detailing the reason for this anthology's existence. Besides, where else can you find Neil Gaimen, Holly Black, and Charles De Lint all in one place. All of your favorite fairy tail writers in one place. This is a stunning collection of stories that just happens to featured some of my favorite authors. How was I supposed to resist? The introduction alone is worth the money. Why you ask? Because the intro itself is a fairy tale detailing the reason for this anthology's existence. Besides, where else can you find Neil Gaimen, Holly Black, and Charles De Lint all in one place.

  18. 4 out of 5

    S Pearlyan

    3.5 stars Some of the stories were really awesome. Most were just good, not awesome. 1-2, I might have hated. Now about the theme, I loved the take on various fairy tales esp when same story got more than 1 treatment. However I do not think it's really young adult as my library has it coded. Some are quite dark with more sexual content, and not to mention child abuse. Most stories here are previously published, so you might have read them before. However overall a good enough reading 3.5 stars Some of the stories were really awesome. Most were just good, not awesome. 1-2, I might have hated. Now about the theme, I loved the take on various fairy tales esp when same story got more than 1 treatment. However I do not think it's really young adult as my library has it coded. Some are quite dark with more sexual content, and not to mention child abuse. Most stories here are previously published, so you might have read them before. However overall a good enough reading

  19. 4 out of 5

    Caroline

    On the surface, this book was right up my alley. I love fairly tales and modern retellings. However, the stories in this book are more style than substance. Sure the writing is technically excellent, but the characters have no life to them. Fairy tales should first and foremost grab you on an emotional level; these are way too cerebral for me.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Beth Smyth

    favorites so far: Mr. Simonelli My Life as a Bird (now I have to check out Charles de Lint's Newford tales) The Night Market (LOVED the ending, so so much) Blood & Water (really dark take on the Little Mermaid) favorites so far: Mr. Simonelli My Life as a Bird (now I have to check out Charles de Lint's Newford tales) The Night Market (LOVED the ending, so so much) Blood & Water (really dark take on the Little Mermaid)

  21. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    I used to read anthologies all the time. It's great for discovering new authors in a genre I know I like. This one is no exception. I added at least 12 titles to my "to read" list while reading this one. I used to read anthologies all the time. It's great for discovering new authors in a genre I know I like. This one is no exception. I added at least 12 titles to my "to read" list while reading this one.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    Meh. I read the retellings of my favorites, Beauty and the Beast, Little Red Riding Hood, Snow White, and Rapunzel, and mostly skimmed the rest. A few I had read before, nothing terribly compelling. 3 stars.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    I wish I had a shelf that said "didn't finish reading." I love fairy tales, but the more I read in this anthology, the darker and more disturbing it got. The Cinderella retelling with the pschyo teacher who kills a kindergarten student finished it off for me. I wish I had a shelf that said "didn't finish reading." I love fairy tales, but the more I read in this anthology, the darker and more disturbing it got. The Cinderella retelling with the pschyo teacher who kills a kindergarten student finished it off for me.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    This is a wonderful collection of modern fairy tales - some completely new ideas, some excellent retelling of old old tales. It was absolutely delightful.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Vicki

    There is only one story I recommend in this book - it is "The Price" by Patricia Briggs. It is based on Rumplestiltskin and is wonderful. Loved it! There is only one story I recommend in this book - it is "The Price" by Patricia Briggs. It is based on Rumplestiltskin and is wonderful. Loved it!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    Some of the stories are gorgeous and terrifying and amazing. Some fizzle and die. But I do think there's way more good than bad. Some of the stories are gorgeous and terrifying and amazing. Some fizzle and die. But I do think there's way more good than bad.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Wendy

    I overall enjoyed this, but was, at the same time disappointed. I have read most of these stories in other anthologies. I bought this book years ago, and perhaps should have checked that at the time, but obviously I didn’t. I’m not sure if there is much rhyme or reason to how the stories are presented. I absolutely did not like the first story, although it is perhaps the one that makes the most sense in terms of presentation: The Seven Dwarves Stage A Comeback. So we know we are getting fairy ta I overall enjoyed this, but was, at the same time disappointed. I have read most of these stories in other anthologies. I bought this book years ago, and perhaps should have checked that at the time, but obviously I didn’t. I’m not sure if there is much rhyme or reason to how the stories are presented. I absolutely did not like the first story, although it is perhaps the one that makes the most sense in terms of presentation: The Seven Dwarves Stage A Comeback. So we know we are getting fairy tales retold. Thankfully, they are not all like this. I don’t enjoy reading plays, and I especially don’t like reading plays where there are seven characters, all unnamed. As I continued to read, and realized I’d read most of these before, I was a disappointed and somewhat annoyed. However, it’s been years since I’ve read any fantasy so eventually I settled in and carried on. As can be expected in such a large anthology, the stories will cover a variety of fairy tales (or the same one in different ways) in very different ways. My favorites had to be The Night Market, as it’s based on a tale I’ve never heard before; therefore the plot and outcome are all completely new to me. The atmosphere is palpable. It is a creepy, empowering, visceral tale. So well done. The other one that stands out to me is the re-telling of Pinocchio, an absolutely horrifying take on that old tale. We are set into a place, if not exactly a time, atmospheric and intense. To be honest, my only knowledge of Pinocchio is the Disney movie. I’ve never read the book. But if I recall correctly, Gepetto just wants a boy child so badly he makes a marionette and turns it into his child. The version in this anthology turns that love around into pedophilia/sexual abuse; but as Pinocchio finds his way to overcoming this with some help from an old donkey and a magistrate, he realizes eventually that the magistrate has made a mistake to send him back to Gepetto, and he takes off on his own. We think and hope that this will be a happy ending for the abused boy. There is a scifi story in this anthology that reminds me of why I really dislike scifi. And the several stories at the end of the book, where you would hope things are strong, are less interesting than those in the beginning. Unless, of course, it’s just that after 400+ pages, I became tired of retellings of the same, same, same fairy tales. In any case, if you’ve never read any of the Terri Windling/Susan Datlow anthologies, I would recommend this book. If you have read those, I would skip this, and just try to find Pinocchio somewhere else. (It was an original for this collection.)

  28. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    A collection of fairy tales retold by various authors, including Gregory Maguire, Neil Gaiman, Patricia Briggs, Garth Nix, Charles de Lint and several others. There is a huge variety here, some very obviously based on standard (i.e., Grimm or Anderson type) fairy tales, a couple that are a mashup of several recognizable themes, and one or two that are new, or at least didn't come from any fairy tale I've ever heard of. Some were enjoyable, some were weird, one or two were somewhat incomprehensib A collection of fairy tales retold by various authors, including Gregory Maguire, Neil Gaiman, Patricia Briggs, Garth Nix, Charles de Lint and several others. There is a huge variety here, some very obviously based on standard (i.e., Grimm or Anderson type) fairy tales, a couple that are a mashup of several recognizable themes, and one or two that are new, or at least didn't come from any fairy tale I've ever heard of. Some were enjoyable, some were weird, one or two were somewhat incomprehensible to me. So there is probably something for everyone to be found here, and well worth dipping into. My favorite was Fifi's Tail by Alan Rodgers. It is one of the mashups - you start out thinking it is Red Riding Hood and the wolf, then it turns into Snow White, then Snow White adopts the wolf from the pound and names him Fifi; the Three Little Pigs make an appearance; the witch and Hansel and Gretel meet Snow White's wicked queen stepmother and they all go off to the house of the seven dwarfs which somehow sounds like Goldilocks' Three Bears' cottage, and... well, you get the general idea. The wicked queen decides to get a lawyer to take the king to the cleaners, and eventually Snow White and Fifi live happily ever after. It was hilarious. Another really good one is Neil Gaiman's Troll Bridge, which I had read before. I would give 4 stars for those two stories, but there are also some rather mediocre ones, which brought it down to three.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Maja

    I had pretty high hopes for this anthology, but I feel like adult fantasy is always such a hit or miss, ha, especially when it comes to retellings like this. So many of them feel like they're trying so hard to be Edgy and Subversive, and so many feel unmoored in any kind of sense of exigence or plot or emotion, so unfortunately a great deal of this anthology either didn't really work or only kind of worked for me. There are some stories that definitely hit the four-star threshold or higher -- st I had pretty high hopes for this anthology, but I feel like adult fantasy is always such a hit or miss, ha, especially when it comes to retellings like this. So many of them feel like they're trying so hard to be Edgy and Subversive, and so many feel unmoored in any kind of sense of exigence or plot or emotion, so unfortunately a great deal of this anthology either didn't really work or only kind of worked for me. There are some stories that definitely hit the four-star threshold or higher -- standouts include "My Life as a Bird" by Charles de Lint, "The Red Path" by Jim C. Hines, and "The Price" by Patricia Briggs -- but otherwise, this is an "enjoyed well enough, but wouldn't actively recommend or plan to revisit" book, which means it gets three and a half stars, rounded down, kind of by default. (Also no individual reviews here, since there are WAY too many stories for that.)

  30. 4 out of 5

    ElizabethRose

    This book did not go the way I thought it would... There were very few stories I actually liked and a couple of these stories made me physically gag (see the retelling of Cinderella). There was a lot of references to physical and sexual abuse of children and women and it has left me concerned for the mental states of some of these authors. I really liked the retelling of Rumpelstiltskin and a few of the Little Red Riding Hood stories. The Beauty and the Beast one was ok too. I almost DNF this bo This book did not go the way I thought it would... There were very few stories I actually liked and a couple of these stories made me physically gag (see the retelling of Cinderella). There was a lot of references to physical and sexual abuse of children and women and it has left me concerned for the mental states of some of these authors. I really liked the retelling of Rumpelstiltskin and a few of the Little Red Riding Hood stories. The Beauty and the Beast one was ok too. I almost DNF this book but it is part of my 2019 Reading Challenge and my OCD forced me to finish. I read it, there were some good parts, mostly bad, and I plan on getting this book off my shelf and into the hands of someone who might appreciate the more than 3 or 4 stories out of 34.

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