Saturday, March 7, 2015

The Turnip Princess and Other Newly Discovered Fairy Tales - Franz Xaver von Schönwerth, translated by Maria Tatar, edited by Erika Eichenseer

FTC Compliance Statement: I received a free, time-limited, electronic review copy of this book from the publisher via in exchange for my honest review, which is provided below. I have not been compensated for this review and my opinion is my own.

Fairy-tale, myth, and legend fans will love this collection of stories originally collected in the mid-1800s but lost until being rediscovered in 2012. As a child, I read many Brothers Grimm and Hans Christian Andersen stories, and these tales make a great accompaniment to those famous collections.

I think my favorite stories in this book were "The Figs," "The Portrait," "Ashfeathers" (a Cinderella-type story), "The Scorned Princess," "The Traveling Animals," "Woodpecker,""Hans Dudeldee," and "Oferla." I must say I found a few of the stories puzzling; I wondered if there was supposed to be a lesson to take away. Maybe not - it's easy to imagine these stories being told by a fire in a cozy cottage, maybe to provide entertainment on a winter night. Or maybe the lesson isn't something that easily translates into one we would understand as people living at the beginning of the 21st century.

This book includes a section of brief commentary on each story, which provides background information as well as information linking these stories to other tales and legends, as well as discussion of common themes, incidents, and motifs. There's also a section of notes on the sources of the tales. Recommended.

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