Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Book Review: Tales From the Brothers Grimm and the Sisters Weird by Vivian Vande Velde

My nine year old daughter found this in the Junior Fiction section of the library. She tossed it disgustedly on the return pile a few days later, saying, "This book is dumb. I don't like the way the author redid the fairy tales." Since she's not a big fan of fairy tales anyway, I decided to read it to see if she was right, or if she just didn't appreciate it because of the genre.
The answer, I found, is a little of both. After reading this compilation of "twisted" fairy tales (and it's a quick read) it's clear to me that the book has been wrongly placed in the library: it isn't a book for the 8-12 age range, unless you've got a kid who's ahead of his/her years, irony-wise. The cultural references, dark humor, and general irreverence are more suited for teens and adults. The stories themselves are well-written, and amusing in places, (and secretly echo some adults' feelings about certain iconic fairy tales) but for the most part, I myself couldn't work up much enthusiasm over them. But I can definitely see a more appreciative audience out there for it.

*Originally published on June 14, 2013

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