Book 5 Finished

Posted on February 19, 2013. Filed under: Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , , |

Cover art for Enchanted

When I was a kid, I read all of the really scary fairy tales where people’s eyes were pecked out, or they cut off their own toes. (And people talk about modern YA being dark!)

Enchanted by Alathea Kontis doesn’t have any of that, though it does have an evil fairy godmother. It starts off as a sweet retelling of The Frog Prince, and then things get complicated. It’s as if all of the fairy tales we know and love all happened to the same family. Sunday Woodcutter, the seventh daughter of a seventh daughter, is doomed to a happy life (she’d rather have an interesting one). Her elder sisters, those still living, each have their own gifts, and hers is that anything she writes will come true. This means she can only write about the past, and no one wants to listen to her stories until she meets a frog named Grumble. They become fast friends, and Grumble, who is falling in love with Sunday, asks for a kiss each time she leaves. Sunday obliges, and the day that she is truly in love with him is the day the spell is broken. Too bad she’s not there to see it happen.

Sunday’s older brother is the infamous Jack (of all of the Jack tales), and he’s presumed dead. It’s her adopted brother Trix who trades the cow for magic beans which become the beanstalk. There’s references to Rapunzel, Princess and the Pea, Cinderella, and I can’t remember all of them, but they come off as tongue-in-cheek rather than contrived. Some might be bothered by the insta-love between Sunday and the prince, but that just made it seem more like a modern fairy tale to me.

Read Enchanted, named one of the top ten 2013 Best Fiction for Young Adults, if you like Robin McKinley and Shannon Hale’s fairy tale retellings.

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