Chat Between Chapters: Genre: Fairy Tale Retellings

October 4, 2015 Chat Between Chapters, Featured Posts 17


  Fairy tale retellings are very popular these days. What do you think of the genre? Any favorites to recommend?

Julie Review Avatar Julie:

I’ve been hit or miss with retellings, mostly miss. Some have been a spectacular interpretation – like the Lunar Chronicles (Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, and soon, Winter). But some I’ve not cared for. Cruel Beauty is one of them, though I seem to be the black sheep in that opinion. I have mixed feelings about Dorothy Must Die and Splintered. Destined was alright, but I wanted more from a Psyche retelling. I actually DNF’d Rumpel. So, I’m definitely looking for a fairy tale retelling that will blow me out of the water.



Look – a chart to help you find the fairy tale retelling that you are looking for!

Some that stand out that I’ve read are: 

  • Cruel Beauty – a Beauty and the Beast retelling
  • The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer. Cinderella as a cyborg. The Big Bad Wolf as a love interest. Rapunzel as a hacker stuck in a satellite instead of a tower. This series is great. And Winter is coming!
  • Goose Girl by Shannon Hale. I probably had a messed up childhood from reading Grimm’s Fairy Tales. Or from the Fractured Fairy Tales cartoons. It’s hard to tell. But this was a great retelling of the original.

I also have an entire shelf of fairy tale retellings on Goodreads. Besides Winter, I’ve got my eye on Tithe, A Kiss at Midnight, and Ruby Red for upcoming books to read.

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17 Responses to “Chat Between Chapters: Genre: Fairy Tale Retellings”

  1. Verushka

    I actually don’t mind them so much because I can tell very clearly which ones I’ll like and which ones I won’t if that makes sense. It really does make a difference to the way I view the genre. I like the stories that are left of centre — the oddest retellings I can find, in fact 🙂
    Verushka recently posted…Emma Viskic: Diversity in writing

    • Julie

      How can you tell? That would be great to know before I even get into them whether I’d like them heh. I also like the oddest retellings -ones that turn a story on their head. I love the musical Wicked.

      • Verushka

        Heh, good question — tbh, I go with my gut. If a blurb has me excited, I’m hooked, but that usually happens when there’s something odd/unique and Wicked-like about the blurb, you know? I find with retellings they have to be clear on what’s unusual about the book because no one (or maybe that’s just me? lol) really wants a straight up rehash of a Grimm fairytale we’ve heard all our lives with nothing new to it.
        Verushka recently posted…Emma Viskic: Diversity in writing

  2. Bookworm Brandee

    It’s been hit or miss with retellings for me, although I don’t think I’ve read that many. I’ve read some that I felt were retellings but weren’t billed as such… The Lunar Chronicles are on my list to read soon (my younger daughter is *dying* for me to read them) and there are a few others on both your lists that are on my tbr. Lynn, I read Tithe…actually the entire trilogy and liked it. 😀
    Bookworm Brandee recently posted…#OctobeRecFest Review #2 ~ Audio Review ~ Lick ~ Kylie Scott #ShelfLove #COYER

  3. Cynthia @ Bingeing On Books

    I haven’t read too many retellings, but I love the ones I have read. The Lunar Chronicles is my favorite. I also loved A Court of Thorn and Roses by Sarah. J. Maas. And have you read Damsel Distressed by Kelsey Macke? It’s actually a contemporary retelling of Cinderella and it’s really good. In this version, Cinderella is the evil manipulative stepsister. It’s really good.
    Cynthia @ Bingeing On Books recently posted…September Wrap-Up!

    • Lynn

      Some good suggestions, Cynthia! I like Sarah J. Mass. I should check out the Court of Thorn books.

    • Julie

      Ooh a Cinderella story on its head, that sounds interesting. Gonna look that up on Goodreads 🙂

  4. Genea @ My Heart Beats For Books

    Yes, the Lunar Chronicles has been the exception, the only fairy tale retelling I really like to date. Not big fans of Cruel Beauty and Dorothy Must Die either. They’ve all been let downs so far, we still have The Great Hunt by Wendy Higgins and The Shadow Queen by C. J. Redwine coming next year, fingers crossed I will be calling them favorites too.

  5. Ramona

    I’m with you on this, Julie. The Lunar Chronicles are a nice exception, but hardly the rule. In general, I find retellings nowhere near as good as the originals :\ Fun post!
    Ramona recently posted…Book Controversies

  6. Terri M., the Director

    Some of my favorites (I have a whole shelf on GoodReads):

    The Princess series by Jim C. Hines
    The Lunar Chronicles
    Henge by Realm Lovejoy (King Arthur retelling)
    Ella Enchanted (read the book or watch the movie)
    The Looking Glass Wars series by Frank Bedor
    The Princess Bride by William Goldman
    The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica by James A. Owen
    Ella, the Slayer by A.W. Exley

    I liked Cruel Beauty, but I could not get into the latest one…Crimson Bound. I tried reading it so I’m still considering listening to it to see if that helps clear things up.

    You’ll have to drop by my blog tomorrow. I’m sharing “Why I Love Fairy Tales.”
    Terri M., the Director recently posted…Scenic Sundays 51: It’s a Small Word

    • Julie

      Just added a ton of those that weren’t already on my want to read ,to my want to read list. Thanks 🙂
      I love LOVe Wicked the musical, should have added that to my list, but I haven’t read the book and have heard mixed reviews on it. I want to watch Ella Enchanted, too bad its not on netflix.

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