Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Blog Tour: Jane Nickerson - Top Ten Fairy Tale Retellings

Today I'm excited and honored to be part of the Strands of Bronze and Gold blog tour!
As you might know, Strands of Bronze and Gold is a retelling of the classic legend of Bluebeard.  Retellings are one of my favorite types of stories and I enjoyed this one immensely (my review will be up in  few days!).  When I asked Jane Nickerson what her Top Ten favorite fairy tale retellings were, this is what she had to say:

Top Ten Favorite/Most Influential Fairytale Retellings

 10. EnchantmentIn which Orson Scott Card takes a story (“Sleeping Beauty”) and spins it out in ways I would never have considered myself. It intrigues me when authors do things I don’t think I could do.

9. Briar Rose—In which Jane Yolen takes “Sleeping Beauty” and places it in a whole new, unfairytale-like, horrible setting—the holocaust—to lend it a new meaning. I actually didn’t like this book, but giving a story a new moral is an interesting idea. 

8. The Once and Future King—In which T. H. White takes the legend of King Arthur and reinterprets the traditional characters, giving them more complex or even contradictory traits to those in the legend. He also pinpoints moments in real history, tying together fact and fiction. And it’s often very funny—or at least I thought so when I was a kid.

7. BeastIn which Donna Jo Napoli tells the backstory of “Beauty and the Beast” from the eyes of the beast. Set in ancient Persia, this retelling reminds me that by altering the setting and the point of view, a whole new story can be created.

6. Ella EnchantedIn which Gail Carson Levine retells “Cinderella” with a twist (Ella is given the curse of “obedience”), and this makes her even more rebellious and saucy than she would have been anyway. There’ve been so many retellings of this story, but this one adds so many fun new details and Ella is a great character, demonstrating how a change in the protagonist’s personality can often totally change the story. 

5. EntwinedIn which Heather Dixon takes “The Twelve Dancing Princesses” and fleshes out all twelve of their characters—which is a formidable task. Mainly this has always been one of my favorite fairytales and I’m hoping to do a retelling of it myself someday. And I love the cover.

4. ZelIn which Donna Jo Napoli turns the villainous witch of “Rapunzel” into a loving (albeit obsessed) mother. The writing and imagery is beautiful.

3. Goose GirlIn which Shannon Hale takes the less-well-known story of “The Goose Girl” and conjures up a very interesting fantasy world—one which she continues to use for the books that come after, which are not retellings. This reminded me that an author can spin off their retelling into other original stories.

2. The Glass SlipperIn which Eleanor Farjeon retells “Cinderella” in a manner that is magical and humorous. There’s a lot of nostalgia in my love for this book, since it’s the first retelling I ever read, and I enjoyed it as a kid. Eleanor Farjeon is considered old-fashioned nowadays, but I happen to love things old-fashioned, and I consider her writing to be totally charming.

1. Beauty—In which Robin McKinley fleshes out “Beauty and the Beast.” My all-time favorite retelling because the Beast is so very delightful and there’s something incredibly romantic about a girl falling in love with a monster, in spite of his monstrousness. By the way, I didn’t like Rose Daughter nearly so well, in which McKinley rewrites the same story from her older perspective.

Thank you so much, Becky, for including me in your blog!

 About the author:
 For many years Jane Nickerson and her family lived in a big old house in Aberdeen, Mississippi, where she was also the children’s librarian. She has always loved the South, “the olden days,” gothic tales, houses, kids, writing, and interesting villains. She and her husband now make their home in Ontario, Canada.

For the tour, 7 finished copies of Strands of Bronze and Gold are being given away! Enter below!
a Rafflecopter giveaway  
Be sure to visit all the stops on the blog tour!

3rd Top Ten Fashions @ The Mod Podge Bookshelf
4th Guest Blog @ The Midnight Garden
5th Top Ten @ Stories & Sweeties
6th Guest Blog @ ReadingTeen
7th Interview @ Kelsey Sutton
8th Top Ten @ Chapter By Chapter
9th Interview @ Icey Books


  1. Cinder, definitely! :)

  2. I haven't read a single one of those! Not good at all. I agree with booksowlsandtea about Cinder though!

  3. Oooh! I love Beauty too! And also Ella Enchanted and Goose Girl. The rest I will have to add to my to-read list. Thanks for the post, I love retellings!!

  4. Either Entwined or Cinder, I'm not sure which is my top choice!

  5. Yay! Our #1s are the same! I adore BEAUTY and always will.