Tuesday, January 27, 2015

The Witch: And Other Tales Re-told

The Witch: and Other Tales Re-told
by Jean Thompson
Blue Rider Press, 2014. 256 pages. Short stories.

In this collection of short stories, Thompson recreates classic fairy tales in modern settings and situations. But hers are not just light, Cinderella-like knock-offs; in these stories, be prepared to look deeply at modern society and see how the events of today so closely mirror the fables recorded hundreds of years ago by the Brothers Grimm and others.

This really was a fascinating collection of short stories. Each one was obviously based on a fairy tale, but in a retelling so contorted and original that each stood alone, independent of the fairy tale as well. The writing was exquisite and the stories, while not always the happiest (and what Grimm fairy tale ever actually ended happily outside of Disney?), really depicted a modern way of living and thinking that will be as familiar to readers as the original stories are. This collection of stories will make you reflect and look for a moral, much as Aesop and the Brothers Grimm encouraged their readers to do.


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