Re-Imagined, Magical Fairy Tales
“I was not made for pleasing princes.”
Despite the fact that I’m not the biggest fan of short stories or anthologies, when Leigh Bardugo announced that she was writing one for the Grishaverse, completed with ILLUSTRATIONS, I knew I would be reading this book.
If you don’t already know, my main reason for not liking short stories are that they seem so incomplete to me and the minute I get invested, the story is over. Poof. And yet, not once in these reimagined fairy tales did I feel like that. I was either mesmerized by Leigh’s magical writing style, in awe of Sara Kipin’s illustrations or just waiting to see what would happen next.
Let’s break this down story wise:
1) Amaya and the Thorn Wood:
I love books about girls with strong hearts who know only to tell the truth and aren’t fooled by frivolities. Amaya was one of these girls and the story of her, a great bear and tales weaved around sadness, love and those who are supposed to love us and sisterhood wrung my heart. I love how this story was told with a stark, honest voice and it was definitely me favourite in the collection.
2) The Too Clever Fox:
Before I began this story, I thought it was about Prince Nikolai Lantsov, the prince whose nickname was the Clever Fox. He comes in the Grisha trilogy, makes an appearance in the Sic of Crown duology and now, HE’S GETTING HIS OWN SERIES.
Which is beside the point because this story is all about an actual fox and the wit he uses to survive. There’s a hunter, friendship, love, betrayal and wit that will make you smile.
3) The Witch Of Duva:
This story is a reimagined Hansel and Gretel retelling, and it’s reimagined in a way only Leigh Bardugo could. Who is the person at fault? The wicked stepmother, the evil witch or the spineless father? I loved how magic was weaved into this tale, and you’ll get no spoilers from me. Just know that this isn’t your traditional fairy tale.
4) Little Knife:
I ADORED this story because for the first time, Grisha power was mentioned and used. This story revolves around tasks set to win the hand of the fairest maiden in the land and the magic that surrounds it all. It’s filled with Tidemaker power and I loved every second of it.
5) The Soldier Prince:
This story is a reimagined Nutcracker story with Grisha Fabrikator magic and the spirit of a toy who learns to find his own desires. This is probably one of the more out there stories in this collection, but I loved it anyway.
6) When Water Sang Fire:
This was my second favourite story in this collection because it had mermaids, sisterhood, music, magic and most importantly, a character who is one of my favourites from the Grisha trilogy and I LOVED EVERY SECOND OF IT. Also, IS SHE STILL ALIVE AND WILL WE BE MEETING HER IN THE NEXT PART OF THE GRISHA SERIES?
A mystical, magical collection of re-imagined fairy tales written in a way only a true master like Leigh Bardugo could, with illustrations that bring words to life. 4.5 stars.