Saturday, October 6, 2012

The Outspoken Princess and the Gentle Knight

Edited by: Jack Zipes

First line: Once every two weeks Polly went over to the other side of town to see her grandmother.

Why you should read this book: Zipes collections of fairy tales, common and unknown, are unsurpassed in their depth and perspective, and this work, suitable for young readers, is no exception, showcasing "modern" stories (here defined as those published after World War II) that tend to turn basic assumptions about the form on their heads. Without being overtly political, these tales show how fairy tale motifs unravel in a modern world where modern girls take the crosstown bus, drive fork lifts, and, sometimes, use men's desires to get what they need in order to save their people. There's not a bad story in this book, and the rich line drawings, rendered with both whimsy and gravity, add to the magic.

Why you shouldn't read this book: You believe every girl has to marry, the sooner the better, and her husband needs to be stronger and taller than she is.

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