And that s the way with all these stories They drift to a conclusion, but never fight for it And I wish there had been a little bit struggle, or cunning, to make it feel like the happy endings were earned.
The Door in the Hedge was a bit different than anything else I ve read by Robin McKinley One thing I love about her writing is that she manages to retain that classic fairy tale style of writing, but still throw in her original style as well The first story in the collection was perhaps my favorite, though her retelling of The Twelve Dancing Princesses was very good, too Overall, it was an excellent, light read that felt like you were soaking up an old classic without having to think too much about itRobin McKinley s books are almost always worth reading Master Storyteller Robin McKinley Here Spins Two New Fairy Tales And Retells Two Cherished Classics All Feature Princesses Touched With Or By Magic There Is Linadel, Who Lives In A Kingdom Next To Faerieland, Where Princesses Are Stolen Away On Their Seventeenth Birthdays And Linadel S Seventeenth Birthday Is Tomorrow And Korah, Whose Brother Is Bewitched By The Magical Golden Hind Now It Is Up To Her To Break The Spell Rana Must Turn To A Talking Frog To Help Save Her Kingdom From The Evil Aliyander And Then There Are The Twelve Princesses, Enspelled To Dance Through The Soles Of Their Shoes Every Night These Are Tales To read With Delight A collection of four stories, all in an exquisite enchanting prose style She has the voice down pat, it can draw you in on its own.
Two are retellings, one of The Frog Princess and the other of The Twelve Dancing Princess, in which elements are added that shift the significance of events in the tale I think the second is my favorite of this.
There s also an original tale about the fairies the Fair Folk and the last mortal land, where the fairies take infant boys and maidens nearly old enough to marry And the royal family of that land.
And the fourth one also has some fairy tale elements, a magical hind in the woods, but I think it s the weakest of the four.
Robin McKinley s strong suit is not short stories Her books usually start off slow and take a while to warm up and become interesting, and with short stories, that sort of thing just doesn t work out as well While the stories themselves had interesting plots, the way McKinley writes most of them is plodding, to say the least The first story kept losing my interest, but I know how her writing works, so I continued on, regardless of how bored I was from her initial set up With that said, however, the first story is by far the weakest and the stories only get stronger and interesting as the book moves along, which I really appreciated Well done on whoever created the chronology for this anthology, because the best stories were put last, so there was only buildup and things to look forward to rather than reading a great story at first and then getting disappointed by the next one.
I m a huge fan of fairy tales, which is part of the reason why I picked up this book I very much enjoyed the retelling of the Princess and the Frog While predictable, it was still an interesting twist on the original tale, and I absolutely LOVED the twelve dancing princesses retelling It could have been several pages shorter, but it was overall quite well done.
Basically, this is great if you re a fan of fairy tales and Robin McKinley It takes a lot to to get through the set ups of most of the stories, but they do have some sort of payoff that I felt was worthwhile It s not amazing by any means, nor are these particular retellings must reads, but they re great if you re in need for a fairy tale fix.
Also posted on Purple People Readers.
Robin McKinley writes a mean fairy tale, whether she s reworking an old classic The Twelve Dancing Princesses, The Princess and the Frog , The Golden Hind or writing her own The Stolen Princess I love how atmospheric these stories are you step into each story slowly until you re fully submerged, almost ensorcelled yourself The characters and their histories are fleshed out well beyond the scope of the original fairy tales The soldier in The Twelve Dancing Princesses becomes an old campaigner who can t go back to his old life the court in The Princess and the Frog has a powerful visitor who has overstayed his welcome The women are all still as beautiful as the moon and the men are all stalwart and true, but I d be willing to attribute that to the fairy tales, rather than to McKinley The only consistent weakness in the stories was plot related It s most apparent in The Golden Hind, view spoiler when the princess visits the enchanter in order to free her brother and the other hunters There s a moment where she walks into the chamber to see him, and then in the moment after she s free In fact, the climax seems to be missing from many of the stories, because the magic in each of them is too mysterious for it to be clear what s going on The two brothers dueling in The Princess and the Frog has the same sort of lackluster ending, and I actually paged back while reading The Twelve Dancing Princesses to see what the requirement was to break the enchantment It s stated early on that the soldier only needs to speak truly of what he s seen, but that s pretty boring in practice given that the shadow court seems so powerful and nefarious hide spoiler This book includes four short stories The Stolen princess 2,5 stars The Princess and the Frog 2 stars, the story was just too short The Hunting of the Hind 3 stars The Twelve Dancing Princesses 3,5 stars Okay i ll admit that a three star rating for Robin Mckinley writing is absurd She s one of the great ones able to transport me to magical worlds, with her beautiful smooth writing.
I guess these short stories are told in the classical traditional fairy tale way, and after having read so many fairy tales retellings i can t help comparing this one, with other tales i ve readnamely Wildwood Dancing A retelling of The Twelve Dancing Princesses Princess and the Frog fairy tales Which i guess is unfairFor those who like classical fairy tales with love at first sight.
no character development, and things like that i think you ll enjoy this quite a lot For others who have been spoiled by a certain modernization that has re written today retellings of fairy tales, this will probably rank a little lower.
despite the beautiful writing.
A Door in the Hedge by Robin McKinley is a small collection of short stories There are 4 stories total, 2 new stories and 2 stories retold My favorite was the first, The Stolen Princess one of the new stories She completely draws you in and before you know it, you have finished the book I couldn t put it down I figured that I would read a story here and there, but that didn t happen It s the same with all her books I finish them before I want to I am in the process of buying up all her books so that I can read them again and again And maybe this sounds morbid, but I am glad that she isn t dead so that she can keep writing I love Jane Austen but it saddens me that she died so young when she could have and would have written many books that I am sure I would love as much as her existing ones.
2 23 18 on sale for 1.
99 for Kindle version.