fairy tale blog

YA Fairy Tale Retellings

I’ve had several people ask for some YA retelling book recommendations, so here are a few of each! I marked my favorites with an asterisk:

Cinderella

Snow White

Beauty & the Beast

Sleeping Beauty

Rapunzel

The Twelve Dancing Princesses

Peter Pan

Aladdin/1,001 Nights

Red Riding Hood

Hansel & Gretel: Sweetly by Jackson Pearce

The Little Mermaid: Mermaid by Carolyn Turgeon

The Frog Prince: 

Rumpelstiltskin: A Curse Dark as Gold by Elizabeth C. Bunce

The Snow Queen

Book Reviews : Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

I actually liked this for Scarlet because in many ways I could relate to her. We were both close to our Grandmothers and have the same relationship with them. I thought the way she met her Wolf was clever and I liked this book because of that. I was not a fan of the insta-love.

Beauty and the Beast

We all talk a lot about Beauty and the Beast—especially me. Of all the fairy tales I’m obsessed with, this has always been my favorite. And right now, I think the Beast is an excellent way to continue this discussion on rape.

What do you know about him, you who grew up on Disney?

The Beast was a jerk, right? He was mean to some fairy, so she turned him into a monster as a well-deserved punishment.

My favorite version of this story is La Belle et le Bete, a novella by a Madame Villeneuve. It’s the version of this story type that our current version is most directly descended from. And it doesn’t focus a lot on this aspect of things, but here is what I have always taken away from this story:

The Beast is the victim.

He’s young. Young enough that he can’t be left home alone when his mother the queen goes off to war. So they leave him with a fairy woman.

The fairy falls in love. The Beast—future Beast—doesn’t feel the same way. That—not wanting a romantic relationship with his guardianthat is what he’s being punished for.

So we’ve got a young man, sexually harassed, at the very least, by a woman he trusted to take care of him. He gets tossed into some new body, monstrous and unfamiliar. But wait!

There’s more. Part of the spell is that he must seem as stupid as he is hideous. You’ve got this child, abused, tortured, transformed, and not even able to properly express himself—able to think just as he normally does, but unable to express those thoughts, unable to communicate effectively, unable to even let the Beauty get to know him as he really is.

I’ve read a lot of weird, intense, depressing fairy tales, but I’ve never encountered a character I felt more sympathy for than the Beast.

Now, let’s talk about what we’ve done to this story over the years, and what it says about us as a society.

This awful thing that happened to the Beast was his own fault, naturally. A very young man is sexually abused, essentially, by an older woman who is supposed to be taking care of him, and we change this into the story of an unpleasant young man being justly punished by a good woman. And then—then we do the exact same thing Beauty spent the entire story learning not to do. We immediately assume that ugliness of body must signify ugliness of spirit, and we adjust the story accordingly.

This is meant to be a story about a girl learning to see past appearances—about Beauty becoming a better person. Instead it’s become the exact opposite—Beauty helping the Beast to become better. It’s a redemption story now. The Beast never needed to be redeemed. He needed to be rescued.

I love Beauty and the Beast, in all its versions. I’m not saying that there’s something wrong with the version we tell now. It’s a good story, if a different one. What I am saying is that the way the story has changed over the years can be connected in interesting ways to how we handle the issues it contains in real life.

How many times have you heard the words “Men can’t be raped?” We have this bizarre inability to accept the idea of the guy as the victim in any situation. Anyone who gets raped, our society tends toward the mindset of “They deserved it.” Or we pretend it didn’t happen. And in the meantime, we’ve got all these people suffering the way the poor Beast does.

Imagine how traumatized he must have been. Imagine going through that, and having everyone siding with the evil fairy, everyone saying you deserved it, everyone assuming that because you’re big and ugly, you couldn’t possibly have been a victim here, and in fact, you were probably the perpetrator.

Let’s think less about magic flowers, and more about the incredible abuses of power at play here. The Beast is magnificent. And so many people are going through the real-life equivalent of his problems. We need more Beauties to see the worth in the people we push off to the side. No one real should ever have to suffer like the Beast.    

\n  QQL&��

(She’s the kind of dreamer that lives in vodka and fairy tales and the hope that one day he will realize that he missed out on the most beautiful goddamn thing he’s ever had the chance to hold onto.)

She’s the kind of lover that loves in marijuana minutes & half smoked cigarettes & drunken hope that one night he’s going to wake up next to a blonde with eyes like the sunrise & suddenly miss her black velvet curls & night sky, starry eyes. And the darkness that once left him afraid.. he’ll crave.

(And she hopes he finds her in his nightmares, her lips on someone else’s lips and her hands tangled up in their hair and she hopes he remembers the way she used to taste like blood and bravery and half of an unfinished love song & she hopes it makes him miss her, the way she misses sleeping pills and being 17.)

He’ll dream about her until he’s wide awake, until every cup of coffee tastes like her name, bitter but so fucking sweet & his hands will shake, remembering how her lips tasted like cherries & second chances. And her only wish is when his blonde bombshell asks what his favorite flavor is, he says cherries. It’s always been cherries.

—  A collab with ( weallwritealong )

anonymous asked:

i really want to follow more disney/fairy tale blogs, do you have any favourites? thank you in advance

The all time king is @droo216

@ibuzoo posts beautiful Disney graphics from time to time. @theabhorsen blogs about fairy tale things. @caddies posts Disney stuff, as does @saferincages. @princessesfanarts posts really beautiful art. 

Seriously, I follow SO MANY wonderful Disney and fairy tale blogs, it might be easier to do this- if you post Disney or fairy tale things, like this post so anon and others can find you! Like this even if I don’t follow you, so I can lurk too.