Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Fairytale Retellings I’ve Read/Want to Read


Top Ten Tuesday was created by the lovely team at The Broke and the Bookish. The theme for this week is fairytale retellings I’ve read or want to read, and this includes fairytales that I want to be retold. So I’m going to split my post up into three sections.

Retellings I’ve Read

1. Cinder by Marissa Meyer:
Cinder is obviously a retelling of Cinderella and is the first book in The Lunar Chronicles series. The other books are also retellings of other fairytales: Scarlet (Little Red Riding Hood), Cress (Rapunzel) and Winter (Snow White). This is one of my favourite series of all time because it is so well thought out and a lot of fun to read. These are sci-fi retellings that are set in the distant future when life on the moon is possible. Even if you’re not into the sci-fi genre (and I’m not), I’d highly recommend these books.

2. A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas:
This is a retelling of Beauty and the Beast, along with some other fairytales like East of the Sun and West of the Moon. ACOTAR is a wonderful first instalment of a new fantasy trilogy and I’m excited for the rest of the books. The upcoming two books in the trilogy will also be inspired by fairytales and myths. Book 2 will be inspired by the Hades and Persephone story. Here’s a review of ACOTAR.

3. The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler:
This contemporary novel is loosely based on The Little Mermaid. It doesn’t really follow the story of the Little Mermaid (either the Hans Christian Anderson version or the Disney version) that closely. Instead, there are elements from the fairytale that are incorporated into the novel. There are also lots of mentions of mermaids in the book. Review here.

4. The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh:
This is fantasy retelling of One Thousand and One Nights, so it’s not based on one specific fairytale or folklore from the collection but the story surrounding it in general. I was very excited about this when it first came out because I’ve always loved the story of One Thousand and One Nights. I thought this was a really great take on the story, with some mysterious fantasy elements. I’m excited for the sequel to come out! Review of The Wrath and the Dawn.

Retellings I Want To Read

5. The Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman:
I have yet to read a book by Neil Gaiman but The Sleeper and the Spindle has always been at the top of my list. It is a retelling of Sleeping Beauty and Snow White, which I’m so excited about because Sleeping Beauty is one of my favourite fairytales (and one of my favourite Disney movies). I’ve always been intrigued by Sleeping Beauty/Briar Rose retellings but hesitant to pick them up because she doesn’t do much in the story except sleep. I’ve only heard great things about The Sleeper and the Spindle so I’m keen to pick it up soon. Plus, it has some amazing illustrations by Chris Riddell!

6. The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly by Stephanie Oakes:
This is a relatively new YA release, based on The Handless Maiden, which is a Grimm Fairytale. Before this book was released, I had never come across The Handless Maiden (even though I’ve owned the complete Grimm Fairytales since 2007). This seems like a very heavy, dark and creepy YA novel, which will be a good change up from what I normally gravitate towards.

7. Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge:
I saw this on Aentee @ Read at Midnight’s blog and it seemed like such an intriguing story with unique characters. She thought it was a really great retelling, so I’m excited to check this out soon. See her review here.

8. Wildwood Dancing by Juliet Marillier:
This book has been out for a really long time and I’ve only heard great things about it. It’s a fantasy retelling of Twelve Dancing Princesses and is set in the 1500s. I’ve heard that this book has lots of magical elements, and a really great frog character.

Fairytales I Want Retold

Here are two of my favourite fairytales that I need to see a retelling of. If you’ve ever come across anything that seems to be based on these fairytales, please let me know in the comments!!

9. The Peasant’s Wise Daughter by the Grimm Brothers:
This has been my favourite Grimm’s fairytale since I was a little girl. I haven’t come across any books that have been a retelling of this fairytale.

This is a story about a peasant who brings a mortar to the King as a tribute, against the advice of his wise daughter who tells him that the King would be angry if there is no pestle to go with the mortar. When the young (and slightly foolish) King throws the peasant into jail, the peasant cries that he should have listened to his daughter. The King then sets the peasant’s daughter a riddle to solve, claiming that he’ll release her father and marry her if she manages to solve it. She does and they are married.

Years later, the King makes a foolish ruling during a dispute between a peasant and a merchant (or another peasant?). The peasant who was wronged goes to the Queen for help. She helps him but word gets back to the King that she acted against him. He sends her back to her father and her peasant life. Before she leaves, the Queen secretly slips a sleeping draught into the King’s wine and asks him to allow her to take the one thing she most values from the castle with her. The King agrees and the Queen brings him with her to the hut while he sleeps. When he wakes, she tells him that he was what she valued the most, and he brings her back to the castle where they lived happily ever after 🙂

10. Aurore and Aimee by Jeanne-Marie Le Prince de Beaumont:
This is a really complicated fairytale with lots of different themes, so I’m just going to link to the wikipedia page.

What are your favourite fairytales and fairytale retellings?


19 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Fairytale Retellings I’ve Read/Want to Read

  1. aentee @ read at midnight says:

    Great list! I can’t wait to get my hand on The Sleeper and The Spindle for just the artwork alone. Wildwood Dancing is great- but my favourite Juliet Marillier retelling is Daughter of the Forest omg it’s so good and intense and moving. Thanks do much for linking my review of Cruel Beauty, Jenna!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Beks @ Novel Dreams says:

    Oh I absolutely loved Cinder. I thought it was such a fantastic spin and I totally agree that it’s worth checking out even if you’re not a huge fan of science fiction in general. I actually own Scarlet but haven’t gotten around to reading it yet, but judging by the utterly amazing reviews this series has received as a whole, I’m definitely going to check out the rest of them soon.

    ACOTAR is on my wishlist. Though I’ve only read Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas, I was completely blown away by her writing so I’ll definitely read the rest of that series as well as ACOTAR some day.

    Sarah Ockler is an author I’ve had no experience with before but I’ve heard some amazing things about her other contemporary novels. I’ve never read a retelling (however loosely) of The Little Mermaid so I might have to check it out some day.

    Thanks for the recs this week! Some of these will definitely be making their way onto my wishlist 😛

    Beks @ Novel Dreams


  3. Lydia Tewkesbury says:

    Cinder is such an awesome book.

    I want retellings of the old version of fairytales right now. I listened to a lecture Neil Gaiman gave a while ago where he said that apparently in the original story of Sleeping Beauty the whole 100 years of sleeping part was only the beginning. The meat of the story, he said, was after her marriage, when her mother in law frames her for murdering and eating her own children. Fairytales were so gross because they were made child friendly.

    Liked by 1 person

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