Saturday, May 26, 2018

Keep it Short #21

This week I read two fairy tales from The Blue Fairy Book.

Felicia and the Pot of Pinks.

First sentence: Once upon a time there was a poor laborer who, feeling that he had not much longer to live, wished to divide his possessions between his son and daughter, whom he loved dearly.

Premise/plot: Felicia's brother Bruno is BAD NEWS. He has no intention of treating his sister well. You would think--perhaps if this wasn't a fairy tale--that he wouldn't begrudge his sister a pot of pinks--a flower pot. I mean it makes a little sense to begrudge a silver ring. But a flower pot?!?!

Felicia has left her home to fetch water so she can water her pot of pinks. She meets someone unexpected on her way--the 'Queen of the Woods.' But when she returns her pot of pinks is GONE. In its place is a CABBAGE. Upon seeing the replacement, she is so upset that she hurls the cabbage out the window. Much to the cabbage's dismay! You see, this is a TALKING CABBAGE. Because of course that makes perfect sense! The next day, she makes amends to the offended cabbage and she learns what happened to her pot of pinks. BRUNO. Felicia is tempted to take revenge--on her brother's hen. Fortunately, the hen is a TALKING hen. And the hen is able to convince her that all is not as it seems. (Felicia should have suspected as much by now, right?!)

Who is Felicia really? And will she get her pot of pinks back? If I've intrigued you, you can read what happens next

My thoughts: I really enjoyed this one! 

The White Cat

First sentence: Once upon a time there was a king who had three sons, who were all so clever and brave that he began to be afraid that they would want to reign over the kingdom before he was dead.

Premise/plot:  The youngest son has the BEST adventure in this fairy tale. So the king, I believe, eventually gives his three sons three TASKS or three TESTS to see who will be his heir. The tests are whimsical, almost nonsensical in nature. Find me the most beautiful dog. Find me a piece of muslin so fine that it could be drawn through the eye of a needle. Bring home the loveliest princess. The last request makes a little bit of sense. The other two, not so much. Each task is given a full year to complete. So this story spans three full years!

As I said, the youngest son has the BEST story. On his journey, he comes across a mysterious castle with a LOVELY mistress--a white cat. He is CHARMED and DELIGHTED and completely CAPTIVATED. He forgets himself--literally. But the White Cat is always ready to help. She sends him back to the king with--you guessed it--the littlest dog, the finest piece of muslin, and the loveliest princess.

My thoughts: I loved, loved, LOVED, LOVED this story. Why did no one tell me about this fairy tale?!?! What other tales have I been missing out on?!

© 2018 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews


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I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
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  • fantasy
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  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

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