fairy tale retelling

EVERLAND—New in Paperback!

On March 28, Wendy Spinale’s magical thrill-ride, EVERLAND, comes out in paperback and we couldn’t be more thrilled!

If you’re already a self-proclaimed EVERLAND fangirl who doesn’t have a copy of EVERLAND on your shelf or if you’re completely new to the series, there’s no better time to get your hands on the paperback edition!

Check out the summary for EVERLAND below:

Forget the story of Peter Pan you know. Because in Everland, the only way to grow up is to survive.

London has been destroyed in a blitz of bombs and disease. The only ones who have survived are children, among them Gwen Darling and her siblings, Joanna and Mikey. They spend their nights scavenging and their days avoiding the ruthless Marauders – the German Army led by Captain Hanz Otto Oswald Kretschmer.

Unsure if the virus has spread past England’s borders but desperate to leave, Captain Hook hunts for a cure, which he thinks can be found in one of the survivors. He and his Marauders stalk the streets snatching children for experimentation. None ever return. Until the day they grab Joanna. As Gwen sets out to save her, she meets a mysterious boy named Pete. Pete offers the assistance of his gang of Lost Boys and the fierce sharpshooter Bella, who have all been living in a city hidden underground. But in a place where help has a steep price and every promise is bound by blood, it will cost Gwen. And are she, Pete, the Lost Boys, and Bella enough to outsmart Captain Hook?

Dying to know more?! We’ve got you covered. Read a special sneak peek of EVERLAND:

Everland (Excerpt) by I Read YA on Scribd

Find EVERLAND in paperback everywhere on March 28th!

Barnes & Noble | Amazon | Books-A-Million | Indie Bound | Walmart | Target

P.S. Don’t forget to pick up the sequel to Everland, UMBERLAND, when it hits stores May 9th!

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:


Snow White

Beauty & the Beast

Sleeping Beauty


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

okay so im sure I saw a post about mermaids having their own form of sign language bc sound doesn’t travel underwater, but what if they’ve just evolved without hearing at a certain point? in or out of the water, they have to sign to understand one another. (sorry 

and maybe a girl who’s deaf or hard of hearing is in a shipwreck, and while the others are shouting for help in a cold and soundless sea, the girl is frantically signing. she knows its useless, but her panic flies through her fingers as she falls deeper and deeper into the ocean. the mermaids watch, unmoved, as the rest of the sailors drown, but they recognize that her hands are making words, though they dont have the same language. 

when the girl wakes up, she finds herself on a tiny spit of land, waterlogged but alive, and surrounded by sharp-toothed fish people whose fins shimmer darkly beneath the surface. it takes a bit of doing, but once she realizes that they don’t want to eat her, the girl begins to learn their signs, and vice versa. they feed her and teach her to fish, and she teaches them jokes and sleight of hand.

what im saying is mermaids adopting a deaf or hoh girl as one of their own, and moving their colony closer to the surface in order to be near her and them being a weird fishy/human family and living in their own silent and lovely world

Chelsea snorts with disbelief, clamps an arm around my shoulders, and starts hustling me towards the street. “Tomorrow you can send the owner a note explaining everything. Say that you’re terribly sorry but your family refuses to let you work for a serial killer. Blame me if you want. Oh, my sister’s so overprotective! She just wouldn’t listen when I told her dismembering people doesn’t bother me!”

Vassa in the Night

Click here for a Pinterest infographic of these books!


Sleeping Beauty

Beauty and the Beast

The Little Mermaid

The Twelve Dancing Princesses

Little Red Ridding Hood

Snow White


Alice in Wonderland

The Goose Girl

Peter pan

Other Retellings

What is your favorite fairy tale retelling? Any retellings that aren’t on the list that you would recommend?
Disney releases new Beauty and the Beast teaser trailer

People: Look is Emma Watson

Me: Okay, but when is Rhysand going to show up?

About Belle:

The story of Beauty and the Beast finds new life in this magical and imaginative retelling that’s filled with romance and adventure.

By the time her sixteenth birthday comes around, Belle feels more convinced than ever that she is being called by the wrong name. Unlike her older sisters Celeste and April, whose names suit them perfectly, Belle knows that she is not beautiful. She begs to be called by her given name, Annabelle—or even Anna for short—but to no avail. Her solace is her wood-carving hobby, and she longs to find the Heartwood tree: Legend has it that, when carved by the right hands, it can reveal the face of one’s true love.

One day, during a fierce storm, Belle’s father stumbles upon the fabled tree—only to become ensnarled by it and come face-to-face with a terrifying and lonely Beast, who will set him free on one condition: that Belle carves the Heartwood. Belle agrees, never dreaming that she and the Beast have the same wish: to be seen not with the eyes of the mind, but of the heart.

Buy a copy here!

While I find myself relating more and more to Rapunzel characters in fairy tale retellings, Beauty and the Beast will always have a place in my heart, and I do usually love classic retellings (Beauty by Robin McKinley is one of my absolute favorites). Belle delivers exactly that, a fairly standard retelling of Beauty and the Beast with its own charm.

Belle is a charming fast read and had many elements that I appreciated; I loved that Belle had her own “magic” for lack of a better term, and the enchanted forest has to be one of my favorites. I appreciated that it stayed fairly true to the original fairy tale with a conflict more of man v. fate rather than forcing some sort of man v. man or man v. whatever. It had the “happily ever after” that I crave in fairy tale retellings, because for real, enough with the edgy, dark stuff. I want my people to be happy, darn it.

That being said, as a story I feel it fell flat. (SPOILER ALERTS AHEAD). You’re half way through the book before any sort of conflict really happens (when Belle’s family has to move to the country) and at least 2/3 of the way through before the Beast is introduced. That means that there is only 1/3 of the book for Belle and the Beast to fall in love and break the spell, which feels rushed and more like “TA DA, they’re in love. The spell was broken, the end, they live happily ever after.” I got very little chemistry from the two characters and wondered when, exactly, they fell in love. It’s an explosive moment when Belle realizes she is in love with the Beast, but how did they get there? What happened to make her go from mild resentment and resignation to love?

I feel too much of the exposition was spent with Belle mulling over what it means to be Beautiful (vs. beautiful) which has little to no bearing on the rest of the book. To sum it up, Belle believes that her sisters are Beautiful while she is just beautiful. However, after they move to the country, their looks have no bearing as each sister comes into their own in ways they couldn’t while being rich in the city (ie, one sister discovers a talent for cooking). Similarly, much of the exposition is taken up describing Belle’s “place” in the family, which again doesn’t matter any more once they move. All of the talk and description of Belle’s internal feelings about Beauty and her place in the world made the beginning very hard to get into and made the actual plot of the book feel rushed.

Overall, I do not regret reading this book. It’s a solid retelling of Beauty and the Beast. However, while solid, I felt the overall story was rushed with too much time spent on internal musings in the exposition. Those words and musings would have been better spent building up Belle and the Beast’s relationship.

Rating: ★★★✩✩ (+½)

Hunting the Wolf- A Red Riding Hood Story

Summary: A young Lady of good social standing, a Huntsman with a reputation, and a slew of mysterious murders. Can they stop The Wolf before he claims another victim?

(Red is a minor character in The Girl Fairy Tales Forgot, this story is set 25 years before the novel and features more mature themes. Warnings for very brief mentions of murder/ sexual assault)

~Happy Halloween!~

It was almost typical for the scene of a grim murder. Rain pelted the muddied streets, creating puddles of dirt and filth, filling the air with its putrid stench. The night was dark and gloomy. Few people lingered on the streets, for one reason in particular.

This was no ordinary murder.

“The Wolf again, Constable?”

A lone figure hid in the deepest of shadows, cursing the starkness of her white hood. She craned her head around the archway as much as she dared, her fists clenching when she heard the name of the spectre haunting her fellow women.

She could just make out the Constable, his hat lowered from his bowed head. He clucked his tongue, no doubt accustomed to the gruesome nature of the murders by now.

“’Fraid so, lad,” the Constable muttered, his tone stiff as though he was trying not to inhale the aura of death. “Third one this week, the monster’s getting brave.”

Quite suddenly, the young Watchman retched, emptying the contents of his stomach into an archway already filled with the stench of blood and other unmentionable fluids. As he moved, the white cloaked woman caught sight of a pair of lifeless legs, and tore her eyes away. She’d seen enough, had seen enough when she’d discovered the first victim. It was seared into her mind, and she didn’t need to look to know what lay beyond those bloodied heels.

More determined than she’d ever been, she pushed away from the wall. Pulling her cloak tighter to shield herself from the rain, she disappeared down the street, seeking the name of the tavern where she was to meet him.

The tavern itself was calm and inviting, few customers milled about and the mood was subdued. As soon as she stepped across the hearth, she felt a wave of warmth wash over her as though she’d stepped into a Roman bath. For a moment, she closed her eyes. It took a lot of courage to be out at this hour, alone, courage she had to force from her deepest desires.

The Wolf had hunted tonight. It could have been her lying in the archway.

She shook her head, fighting the palpitations in her chest. It wouldn’t do to think about what ifs. She was here- and she would fight. The Wolf would cease to be a problem, and she would grow up to own her own tavern one day.

Her dreams grounded her and she opened her eyes, searching for the man whom she had planned to meet in secret. Her dark hair was damp, plastered against her forehead, and the hem of her white cloak was covered in filth. Wrinkling her nose, she tried not to picture the fit her mother would throw. It wasn’t important. Not now.

It didn’t take long to find the man she searched for. He stood out like a sore thumb, even in the deepest corner of the tavern.

As she crossed the room, she ordered a drink from the bar.

“So, you are the Huntsman?” she asked as she approached him. It came out harsher than she intended, but she supposed it was a good thing. Even sitting down, he was almost as tall as her. A giant of a man, broad shoulders and bulky muscles. She tried not to look. She failed.

The Huntsman took a swig of his drink, before wiping his mouth and silently inviting her to sit in the wooden chair opposite him. She did so, sitting up straight, not quite sure where to put her hands but making sure he didn’t know that.

He surveyed her out of his one good eye, his blind one blue and unseeing. She’d been warned about his fearsome appearance, the white gashes against the side of his face so much more prominent in the candlelight. He looked older than his years, and had experiences to match.

“Remnants,” he said noticing her line of vision, “of a battle with my own wolf.”

She shifted, looking away. Every sensibility within her told her to apologise for staring. She could hear her governess screaming at her in her mind, yet she shoved those sensibilities to the side. Here, she was no lady.

“I see,” was all she allowed herself to say in response.

There was a moment where neither said anything else, and a barmaid came over to serve her the beer she’d ordered. She never got to have beer at home, and allowed herself the luxury here. It would help steady her nerves and her hands.

“You can be at no loss as to why I am here, Huntsman,” she muttered, leaning closer to him.

He tilted his chin, eyebrow arched, and she fought the urge to recoil under his intense gaze. He was sizing her up, and she’d be damned if she’d be found wanting. This was too important.

“A mysterious man, some say disguising himself as a wolf, doing unspeakable things to women before killing them as they lay at his ungiven mercy,” his face was hard as stone, the disgust in it giving her hope. He took another gulp of his drink. “It’s enough to turn the stomachs of even the hardest of men.”

“Then you know I’m here to ask you to help me,” she implored, fingers so tight against her glass that her knuckles felt as though they might burst from her skin. “Help me stop this monster. They say you are the best at finding those who don’t wish to be found, that you hunt more than just geese and game. Help me hunt The Wolf too.”

Keep reading

  • Title: Unburied fables 
  • Author: Compiled and edited by Creative Aces Publishing 
  • Genre: Fairy tales, Anthologies, Retellings 
  • Published: October 24, 2016 
  • My rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐/5 

Official synopsis: 

This collection enlisted talent around the world. From students to seasoned professionals, these writers came together to raise awareness and reinvent classic stories. While they showcase a wide variety of origins, styles, and endings, all the tales in this anthology have one classic element in common: a happily ever after. 

Fifty percent of this collection’s proceeds will be donated to the Trevor Project, a non-profit focused on suicide prevention efforts among lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, asexual and other queer youth. 

I have a soft spot for fairy tale retellings, and I’ve always thought the queerer, the better, so it’s like this book was made for me. Unburied fables is a collection of classic stories reinvented, and each one of them offers very interesting twists. 

With several asexual characters, trans representation, and the promotion of so many forms of love (romantic and platonic as well), this compilation has become one of my favourite reads of the year. 

I really enjoyed every story in this anthology but my favourite ones are “Handsome and the Beast”, “Odd”, “Match Sticks”, and “Beauty’s Beast”.

To celebrate Asexual Awareness Week, I recommend you all to read Unburied fables, edited by Creative Aces Publishing

It’s a faboulous compilation of fairy tale retellings, and all the stories have something in common: canonically MOGAI characters and happy endings 💜