Monday, January 7, 2013

Book Review: Beyond Grimm - Tales Newly Twisted

Title: Beyond Grimm - Tales Newly Twisted
Authors: Various
Publisher: Book View Cafe
Summary: (taken from Goodreads)
Not your grandmother's fairy tales! From the far-ranging imaginations of Book View Cafe authors comes this delirious collection of classic tales newly twisted into dark, dangerous, and occasionally hilarious re-tellings. From the golden isles of Greece to the frozen north, from fairytale castles to urban slums, join us on an unforgettable journey!
Through Forests Dark and Grimm...
Hair Raising, by Pati Nagle
No Newt Taxes, by Patricia Rice
Rum Pelt Stilt’s Skin, by Alma Alexander
Of Rats and Cats and Teenagers, by Irene Radford
The Tinderbox, by Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff
Any Brave Boy, by Laura Anne Gilman

Across Golden Seas…
Elfleda, by Vonda N. McIntyre
Harpies Discover Sex, by Deborah J. Ross
To Serve A Prince, by Brenda W. Clough
The Rapture of Ancient Danger, by Sherwood Smith

In Another Part of the Forest...
Mending Souls, by Judith Tarr
Sister Anne, by Sylvia Kelso
Princess Dancer, by Sue Lange
NimuĂ«’s Tale, by Madeleine E. Robins
Ricky Cowlicky, by Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff
Little Red in the ’Hood, by Irene Radford

Around a Campfire...
Hero/Monster, by Amy Sterling Casil
To Ride Beyond the Wide World’s End, by Judith Tarr
Turnabout, by Deborah J. Ross

Overall Rating: 3 out of 5

I am a huge fan of fairy tale retellings and was really looking forward to reading darker versions of the classic fairy tales. As always with short story anthologies, I loved some and disliked others. For Beyond Grimm: Tales Newly Twisted, I found myself enjoying most of the stories, however. As the title suggests, these stories are for those who enjoy more twisted, darker tales. It is even better that many are based off popular children's fairy tales.

Many of these authors are well established and I definitely enjoyed seeing more of their work. I requested this book because of Irene Radford, but I also loved reading stories from Sherwood Smith, Laura Anne Gilman, and Alma Alexander. "Hair Raising" made me want to read more of Pati Nagle, and "Ricky Cowlicky" was also a fun story by an author who was new to me.

I think that the first six stories are the strongest of the anthology, so the later ones were a bit of a disappointment for me. But I do think that there is something for everyone -- while I particularly enjoyed the twists on Rapunzel, Snow White, and Rumpelstiltskin, I think that fans of Arthurian legends will love "Nimue's Tale." I don't think that every single one of these stories will be favorites for one person, but anyone interested in fantasy will find at least one or two stories to love.

*I received a free copy from the publisher through LibraryThing's Early Reviewers program in exchange for my honest review.*