HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Fairy Tales from the Brothers Grimm: A New…
Loading...

Fairy Tales from the Brothers Grimm: A New English Version (edition 2012)

by Philip Pullman

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
6862413,895 (4.01)29
Member:megaden
Title:Fairy Tales from the Brothers Grimm: A New English Version
Authors:Philip Pullman
Info:Viking Adult (2012), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 400 pages
Collections:Read but unowned
Rating:***1/2
Tags:Fairy Tales, Germany, NonFiction

Work details

Fairy Tales from the Brothers Grimm: A New English Version by Jakob Grimm

Recently added byannalena21, private library, etbm2003, gemmawhat, MichaeltK, sawcat, kimthedork, Ferocity, KisuJaPasi
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 29 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 24 (next | show all)
Description: Two centuries ago, Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm published the first volume of Children’s and Household Tales. Now Philip Pullman, one of the most accomplished authors of our time, makes us fall in love all over again with the immortal tales of the Brothers Grimm.

Pullman retells his fifty favorites, from much-loved stories like “Cinderella” and “Rumpelstiltskin,” “Rapunzel” and “Hansel and Gretel” to lesser-known treasures like “The Three Snake Leaves," "Godfather Death" and "The Girl with No Hands." At the end of each tale he offers a brief personal commentary, opening a window on the sources of the tales, the various forms they've taken over the centuries and their everlasting appeal.

Suffused with romance and villainy, danger and wit, the Grimms' fairy tales have inspired Pullman's unique creative vision—and his beguiling retellings will draw you back into a world that has long cast a spell on the Western imagination.

Thoughts: I have been eagerly looking forward to this book since it was announced. I love classic folk tales and I love Philip Pullman's writing, so this was right up my alley. Reading the introduction, you get a real feel for how much Pullman invested time in really understanding how and why the brothers began their undertaking and how much of themselves they put into these "collected folk tales."

Many of these stories I've never read in their mostly original form. I'm familiar with a much larger number of them, but apparently what I know of the tales is generally the much later retelling. It's great to delve into these stories with such a great guide.

Each story is presented, via Pullman's "new English translation," and then there is a bit at the end where Pullman classifies each story and writes a short discussion. It's very scholarly feeling and I love it. This is what it looks like:

Tale Type: ATU 440, "The Frog King'
Source: a story told to the Grimm brothers by the Wild Family
Similar Stories: Katherine M. Briggs: "The Frog," "The Frog Prince," "The Frog Sweetheart," "The Praddo"

1.1 The Frog King, or Iron Heinrich: This is so not the story I'm familiar with. You know, where the princess kisses the frog and he turns into a handsome prince and they live happily ever after. For one, this princess is a bitch who only keeps promises because her father makes her. Second, there is some truly weird details about the frog wanting to sleep in her bed and eat from her plate. Most importantly, though, is that there is no kiss! He turns human again AFTER SHE THROWS HIM AGAINST THE WALL! It's very weird. They still ride off into the sunset together, but I can't for the life of me figure out why.

Also, there is what feels like a completely different story tacked onto the end, the story of Iron Heinrich, the faithful manservant of the prince-who-was-a-frog. I won't go into details because I don't want to spoil anything. I will just say that you should read this story mostly for the end with Heinrich.

1.2 The Cat and The Mouse Set Up House: A lying, conniving cat does not make a good husband for a mouse. End of story.

1.3 The Boy Who Left Home to Find Out About the Shivers: Hmm, this story leaves me torn. It's basically about a "simpleton" who doesn't know enough to understand what people mean when they say "that gives me the shivers" and his understanding of the world is so basic that he has no fear. There is some messed up gruesome stuff in this one and I have a problem with the ethical ramifications of a story about someone who would seem to have a mental development issue but ultimately this story is about being fearless and determined even when the world is basically telling you that you will amount to nothing.

In the end, the way he finally gets the shivers is... weird and suggestive. Pullman notes that another version of this story from another writer places an overtly sexual nature on him finally getting the shivers. Just weird.

1.4 Faithful Johannes: This is the story of the ever faithful servant who will do anything, including sacrificing himself, to serve his king. There is the usual exceedingly beautiful woman, the love at first sight, and the servant who overhears how to save everyone but to do so will most likely cost him his own life.

I'm rather uncomfortable with the old folk tales that basically involve kidnapping a princess in the hopes that she will willingly marry you and the end of this tale has a quite unthinkably violent moment, but it's nice to read a story where the servant's dedication doesn't go completely unrewarded by some self centered, ungrateful royals.

1.5 The Twelve Brothers: This is one of the early foundations for the ever popular stories about a girl with 12 (or 7 or 10 or however many) brothers who are turned into birds by her innocent actions and she is given an almost impossible task to save them. I've read/heard/seen a few other versions but I have to say that I really liked this telling. Don't know how much of it was Grimm and how much was Pullman, but it was good.

1.6 Little Brother and Little Sister: I actually really liked this story of a brother and sister who run away from an evil step mother only for the brother to be turned into a deer by one of her spells. Naturally, there are plenty of folk tale mainstays in this tale- I mean, just how many eligible kings can their be? How many beautiful maidens?- but it's one of the rare Grimm ghost stories. Nice development.

1.7 Rapunzel: I thought I had read the original Grimm version of Rapunzel. I recognized the beginning of the story with the father stealing rapunzel greens (lamb's lettuce) from a witch's garden and the witch taking their child as punishment. What I DON'T ever remember reading is the bit where Rapunzel gets herself into a delicate situation, the prince gets blinded by a thorn bush, and they each, separately, spend a lot of time as beggars. A knocked up Rapunzel is a VERY different message than I was expecting.

1.8 The Three Little Men in the Woods: This is VERY Cinderella-ish except with the added benefit of three little men who reward nice girls with beauty and riches. Naturally, SOMEONE'S head has to be cut off, but happy endings all around?

1.9 Hansel and Gretel: Again, there always seem to be little bits of these stories that I've never heard before. This time it was an interlude with a duck. Who knew?

1.10 The Three Snake Leaves: This one is totally new to me and it's kind of gruesomely awesome! I won't ruin it because it really should be read, but let's just say you haven't seen a bridezilla like this one before!

1.11 The Fisherman and His Wife: A fisherman catches a magical fish and his terrible wife takes advantage of many wishes. Overly long and repetitive. There are too many terrible old women in these stories.

1.12 The Brave Little Tailor: A story about a tailor who kills 7 flies and apparently that makes him the smartest, bravest person in the kingdom. He deals with giants and rowdy animals through wit rather than strength. Ultimately, I couldn't believe that a guy who wasn't smart enough not to leave his jam toast next to an open window was smart enough to outwit and entire kingdom...

1.13 Cinderella: This is the Grimms traditional Aschenputtel story with a bit of the English Mossycoat story (which I've never read and now want to). There is lots of added charm to this story. The ball goes on for 3 nights so there are 3 beautiful dresses for Cinderella but the best part is where her dresses come from. Hint: It's not a fairy godmother. You should read it because that bit is very nice. The biggest negative, one that almost ruins the story for me, is that Cinderella's father is alive. The idea of this father who speaks like he cares for his child yet he lets her be treated so poorly by his wife and stepdaughters... I just can't get past that.

1.14 The Riddle: Yeah, this one was pretty pointless. Except for this hilarious, very modern sounding section: "The prince's servant had taken his place, and when the maid came in he snatched away the robe she'd covered herself with, and chased her away with a stick. So that didn't work." It make me snort when I read it.

1.15 The Mouse, The Bird, and the Sausage: First line: "A mouse, a bird, and a sausage decided to set up home together." Need I say more? This does have a nice moral but it's so utterly ridiculous that it's not worth even this many words.

1.16 Little Red Riding Hood: Story just as we all probably know it. The thing that's always made my nose twitch about this one is, well, HOW does one sleep through having their belly snipped open, filled with rocks, and sewn shut again? This is a ridiculous train of thought given that it doesn't bother me that 2 fully formed people were retrieved, whole and unharmed, from said stomach, but that's neither her nor there.

An interesting note from Pullman regarding this story and Cinderella: Charles Perrault's versions are arguably more well known in Britain, the US, and France than those of the Grimms. What's notable is that Perrault happied up the ending of Cinderella (no stepsisters get their eyes plucked out) but didn't rescue Granny and Little Red Riding Hood from the belly of the wolf- his version ends with them being eaten to serve as a strong morality tale. It's intriguing that Perrault found the systematic abuse of Cinderella to be less morally degrading than the sin of Red wandering off the path to pick flowers...

1.17 The Musicians of Bremen: I like this story a lot. Especially the description the robber gives after he runs from the house!

1.18 The Singing Bone: Evil brother kills innocent brother and almost gets away with it. Almost.

1.19 The Devil with the Three Golden Hairs: In case you were wondering, the Devil is a granny's boy.

1.20 The Girl With No Hands: This story is terrible. But it afforded Pullman a chance to make a wonderful observation:

"'But aren't fairy tales supposed to be full of preposterous things?'

No. The resurrection of the little boy in 'The Juniper Tree,' for example, feels truthful and right. This feels merely silly: instead of being struck by wonder, here we laugh. It's ridiculous. This tale and other like it must have spoken very deeply to many audiences, though, for it to spread so widely, or perhaps a great many people like stories of maiming, cruelty, and sentimental piety."

1.21 The Elves- 3 Stories: This is a collection of 3 somewhat common stories about elves. The first, most recognizable, is about the elves that help the shoemaker. It's well told and almost exactly what you probably remember.

The second is about a hard working servant girl who is asked to be the godmother of a fairy child. I'd never heard this one but it's nice, but very short.

The third is basically instructions on how to get rid of a changeling and make the fairies bring your real child back. Didn't really do it for me.

1.22 The Robber Bridegroom: This story is horrifically gruesome and not in the least bit magical, which made it all the worse. It includes a very violent and repulsive scene where an innocent girl is murdered, chopped into bits, and eaten by a band of murderers. This is all witnessed by the heroine of the story. The resolution is very well executed and satisfying but the story itself is seriously repulsive. It's one thing to have some gruesome stuff in a mystical tale, but this one reads like a horrifying episode of some true crime show.

1.23 Godfather Death: I really like this morality tale. It's one I'm not familiar with but it does have some familiar themes. There was one bit that was particularly interesting and felt especially like something that would catch Pullman's attention. A man is searching for a godfather for his son and approaches the first man to come along the road.

"The first person who came along was God himself. Since he knew everything, he didn't have to ask what was in the man's mind.
'My poor man,' he said, 'I'm sorry for you. I'd be glad to hold you child at his baptism. I'll look after him, don't you worry about that.'
'Who are you?' said the man.
'I am God.'
'Well, be on your way. I don't want you for a godfather. You give to the rich who don't need it, and you let the poor starve.'
Of course, he only said that because he didn't know God's purpose in being so kind to the rich and so cruel to the poor."

That last line just begs for some clarification but there isn't any. I would love to know the Grimm's justification for such a belief.

1.24 The Juniper Tree: Again, this one was completely new to me. It is, quite simply, AWESOME! The structure is perfection. There is a lovely bit at the very beginning where the passing of the months/seasons symbolically represents the passing of a woman's pregnancy and it's just so perfectly done.

From there, the story turns grim and violent quite quickly but again it is so well structured and executed that I almost didn't mind. There is a lot of repetition of a song but the way it is worked into the story makes it much less obnoxious that something like that would typically be. The ultimate conclusion to the story is just perfect. As Pullman notes, "For beauty, for horror, for perfection of form, this story has no equal."

You really must read this story and Pullman's discussion of it, which is quite interesting. I find it quite noteworthy that this story can't really be attributed to the Grimms- it came to them already in manuscript form from the painter Philipp Otto Runge.

1.25 Briar Rose: Yep, it's Sleeping Beauty. And it's almost completely pointless. While the bones of the story are here- beautiful princess born, gifts from godmothers (here they are Wise Women rather than fairies), one "Wise Woman" snubbed so she curses the princess to die, saved by the last godmother's gift to sleep instead, everyone falls asleep with her and a briar grows around the castle- there is almost zero dramatic tension. Unlike the Disney story we're probably most familiar with, Briar Rose isn't secreted away to be raised as a normal girl, she just stays in the castle. The evil Wise Woman doesn't ever make a reappearance. Briar Rose doesn't have to wait for true love's kiss, she's going to wake up either way after 100 years- having not aged a day mind you, nor anyone else within the castle. When the prince does come, the 100 years has actually just ended so he just saunters in without any trouble.

The only people who suffer in this story are the people from around the castle. For 100 years their sons go off to try to "rescue" the princess in the hopes of marrying her and not being dirt ass poor anymore, only to die horrible, drawn out deaths stuck in the briar. Why in the world did this story prevail?

1.26 Snow White: Again, this one is pretty much as we know it but with a few notable exceptions. The most interesting is that the Dwarfs' home is not an unkempt pigsty, it's rather tidy and cared for. This is notable, as Pullman points out, because the Disney version made a conscious effort to downplay the fact that Snow White, a child, is taking up with 7 adult men, regardless of stature. As Pullman states, " ...here {the dwarfs} are a band of little earth-spirits, benevolent and anonymous. They are perfectly capable of looking after themselves, unlike the bearded babies of Disney, who have to be cooked for and cleaned up after by Snow White the all-American mom."

The other big change, the one that freaks me the f*ck out, is how the ending comes about. The dwarfs put Snow White in her glass coffin and a prince happens to stumble upon it. She's so lovely in her not-decaying death that he FALLS IN LOVE WITH A CORPSE AND CONVINCES THE DWARFS TO LET HIM TAKE HER COFFIN/DEAD BODY HOME WITH HIM. He says "Let me take the coffin away with me. I've fallen in love with Princess Snow White, and I can't live without being able to see her. I'll treat her with all the honor and respect I'd feel for a living princess."

The dwarfs agree and the only reason Snow White comes back to life is because one of the prince's bumbling servants nearly drops the coffin, which just happens to dislodge the piece of enchanted apple from her throat. And they live happily ever after. Oh, well they live happily ever after once they invite the evil stepmother to the wedding and make her dance in red-hot iron shoes until she falls down dead. You know, your typical wedding celebration.

1.27 Rumpelstiltskin: Exactly as you've heard it a million times.

1.28 The Golden Bird: A young prince has to complete several challenging tasks, added only by a wise fox, a fox he only seems to listen to about 1/3 of the time.

1.29 Farmerkin: Farmerkin is a trickster in a village full of rich dupes. Not my cup of tea.

1.30 Thousandfurs: This story start out typically enough, with a beautiful dying queen asking her husband to never marry another who was less beautiful than she. So what is he to do? Oh right, fall in love with their DAUGHTER and decide to marry her. Eww. I was done at that point.

She runs away and the story becomes very Cinderella-ish and I couldn't have cared less.

1.31 Jorinda and Joringel: Jorinda and Joringel are engaged but they fall into the trap of a wicked witch. Jorinda is turned into a bird, one of 7 thousand girls to meet such a fate, while the witch lets Joringel go. Naturally, he ends up saving the day. This story is most notable because of the common sense of the young couple. It reads more like a literary fantasy than a folk tale with a moral message.

1.32 Six Who Made Their Way in the World: Five men with extraordinary talents agree to follow around one ordinary soldier. They do some mildly interesting things and take all the king's money.

1.33 Gambling Hans: Hans is broke but he shelter's the Lord and St. Peter for a night and they grant him three wishes: a pack of cards that can't lose, a pair of dice that can't lose, and tree that bears amazing fruit but you can't get down from once you climb up. Hans then uses these to cause all sorts of bother, even for the Devil and the Lord. Pointless.

1.34 The Singing, Springing Lark: Kind of like Beauty and the Beast meets The Odyssey. Weird.

1.35 The Goose Girl: A princess is tricked by her maidservant into switching places so she can marry the prince. There is a talking horse who gets beheaded and some twaddle about controlling the wind.

1.36 Bearskin: This is a lovely story, full of charity and faithfulness, which is a nice change. Naturally, not everyone ends up well, but that's to be expected. There was a plot twist I was expecting that never actually happened, which was a tad disappointing but mostly this one was right on the money.

1.37 The Two Traveling Companions: A good natured tailor and a sour-puss cobbler travel together for a while. Despite the fact that the tailor always treated him well, the cobbler takes advantage of the tailor's poor planning to carve out his eyes and leave him for dead. The tailor is saved (and his eyes regrown) and later helped by many animals he didn't eat when he was starving to death.

1.38 Hans-My-Hedgehog: Hans-my-Hedgehog is half boy half hedgehog (bottom half boy, in case you were wondering). He is gallant and resourceful and honorable and yet his parents can't stand him. He gets his just rewards in the end, marries a beautiful and honorable princess, and gets to be a whole person instead of half hedgehog.

1.39 The Little Shroud and 1.40 The Stolen Pennies: These are both extremely short, little more than a page each, ghost stories. They each have a clear and succinct moral and little else.

1.41 The Donkey Cabbage: This story was really two (or three) separate tales smashed together and it sure felt like it. Not worth the time.

1.42 One Eyes, Two Eyes, Three Eyes: Another Cinderella-ish story but with the added weirdness of 3 sisters with varying numbers of eyes, hence their names and the title. Two Eyes is treated poorly because she's not "special." Weird.

1.43 The Shoes That Were Danced to Pieces: The Dancing Princesses. Familiar and enjoyable.

1.44 Iron Hans: A prince helps a "wild man" and is rewarded by being kidnapped and then sent off into the world alone. He does get the promise of help. He ends up saving a kingdom and living happily ever after, which, incidentally, frees the "wild man" from his curse and turns him back into some king. The only really good part is the bit about the Prince's hair turning gold.

1.45 Mount Simeli: A variant on the Aladdin or 40 Thieves story, but Germanic. It's nice and short but not particularly exciting or satisfying.

1.46 Lazy Heinz: Really annoying story of two really annoying and lazy slobs.

1.47 Strong Hans: This story suffers from severe multiple personality disorder. The are too many false starts and too many random details thrown in. It just doesn't work.

1.48 The Moon: A nice little creation myth. Surprising because it doesn't seem to fit with the other stories or what seemed to appeal to the Grimms, but it's quite nice.

1.49 The Goose Girl at the Spring: You really should read this story! It's great. All the elements are so nice and work very well together. This story and Shakespeare's King Lear share the same basic plot but this story approaches the story of the wronged princess from a very different angle and has a much happier ending.

1.50 The Nixie of the Millpond: A boy is accidentally promised to the nixie (female river mermaid) in the family's millpond. Years later he is finally captured by her and his wife must rescue him. She does but they are fated to spend years and years apart. They do find each other and it's rather sweet.

I really enjoyed this book. It was very interesting reading the Grimm stories that I thought I knew (but really didn't) and many that I'd never heard. There were, as you can tell by reading my synopses, several that I did not care for, but there were many that were charming and enjoyable.

There are a few things that could have made this a bit better.

- I wish Pullman's discussions after each story were longer and more detailed. They were often interesting but too short.
- I wish Pullman would have discussed/explained the categorization system, the Aarne–Thompson tale type index.
- There really should have been an afterward. The stories just end. After The Nixie of the Millpond there is nothing whatsoever. This felt abrupt.

Rating: 4

http://www.librarything.com/topic/148412#3840347 ( )
  leahbird | Jan 15, 2015 |
A lovely and comprehensive collection of Grimm's fairy tales.

This selection of fairy tales includes all of the well-known stories, many less familiar ones and the best the Grimms collected. Pullman has updated the tales in straightforward, extremely readable language, but has left in all the gory bits, which are so often sanitized in collections for children. I also enjoy his endnotes commenting on the stories. "The Mouse, the Bird, and the Sausage" was an unknown tale for me that I thought was hilarious, and it has stuck in my mind. I've been reading fairy tales aloud to my 6-year-old, and this edition has been fun reading for both of us. Highly recommended.

Read mostly aloud (2014). ( )
  sturlington | Jan 8, 2015 |
I thought I might read several of these, but perhaps not every single one. I started by reading each tale Pullman cited in his introduction, then the most popular classics (Cinderella, Snow White, Rumpelstiltskin, Little Red Riding Hood, Hansel and Gretel, Thousandfurs, etc.), but they're each so short, and if you so much as glimpse the first sentence it's hard to stop reading. So, I read them all, and encountered many wicked stepmothers and witches, beautiful princesses, brave/strong/clever men and children, talking animals, magical objects (golden or not), and things in threes. I haven't read any complete translations of the Grimms' fairy tales as an adult, so I don't know how this one compares to others, but it seems quiet excellent to me. I would have enjoyed even more commentary on each story.

From the introduction:

[excerpt from James Merrill's poem The Changing Light at Sandover]:
Fed
Up so long and variously by
Our age's fancy narrative concoctions,
I yearned for the kind of unseasoned telling found
In legends, in fairy tales, a tone licked clean
Over the centuries by mild old tongues,
Grandam to cub, serene, anonymous.

There is no psychology in a fairy tale. The characters have little interior life; their motives are clear and obvious....Nothing...is concealed.

Realism cannot cope with the notion of multiples; the twelve princesses...the seven dwarfs...exist in another realm altogether, between the uncanny and the absurd.

Swiftness is a great virtue in the fairy tale. A good tale moves with a dreamlike speed from event to event, pausing only to say as much as is needed and no more.

The speed is exhilarating. You can only go that fast, however, if you're travelling light; so none of the information you'd look for in a modern work of fiction...is present. And that...is part of the explanation for the flatness of the characters.

There is no imagery....When what you want to know is what happens next, beautiful descriptive wordplay can only irritate.

The fairy tale is in a perpetual state of becoming and alteration.

The only thing to do, it seems to me, is to try for clarity...

Tales

The Frog King, or Iron Heinrich - "In the olden days, when wishing still worked..." (3)

Hansel and Gretel - "She tore him to shreds with her criticism, and he had no defence; if you've given in once, you have to give in ever after." (78)

The Fisherman and His Wife - "Put me back in the water, there's a good fellow." "Fair enough," said the fisherman. "Say no more. The word of a talking fish is good enough for me." (93)

The Riddle - Neatness and clarity are great virtues when you're telling a story. (note, 132)

The Mouse, the Bird, and the Sausage - "But we're never content with living well if we think we can live better." (133)

The Girl with No Hands - "But aren't fairy tales supposed to be full of preposterous things? No." (note, 169-170)

Gambling Hans - "So Hans had nowhere to go but hell, and when he knocked on the gate there, they let him in at once. There was no one at home but the Devil himself and all the ugly devils, because the handsome devils had gone to earth on business." (271)

The Two Travelling Companions - "But whoever digs a put for someone else falls into it himself." (303) ( )
1 vote JennyArch | Dec 2, 2014 |
What's not to love about this. Grimm's fairy tales bear a lot of retelling, and that's all this is. But is is so nicely done. Pullman takes the bones of each story in this collection and puts it in his own words. None of them are updated in terms of their setting, or job (this is full of tailors and peasants and princes, as you would expect) but the words are contemporary. That sounds like it would be odd, but it isn't. In fact at times it works beautifully, in the tale of the idle pair, their speech patterns are those of the idle youf of today's society. He also takes the time to identify the base tale and where it crops up in other folk collections and what drew him tot he story, or how it could be modified. Some of the stories are familiar, some less so. The one things that stuck me again and again is how dark and violent some of the tales are; describing them as fairy tales puts a gloss on them that is not true to the source text. None of these is very long, but they are busy and vibrant and a joy to read. ( )
  Helenliz | Aug 31, 2014 |
Between 1812 and 1857, Wilhelm and Jacob Grimm collected folk tales and published them in six ever-increasing editions. In this edition, Pullman selects 53 that he thinks are the best stories, and tells them in his own voice, while still maintaining their traditions. Each tale contains three sections: the tale itself, the bibliographic details, and Pullman's personal comments. The bibliographic details include the scholarly classification of the tale (for example, a Cinderella story is ATU510A), the source from where the Grimms collected the tale, and a list of similar stories (usually comparing the Grimm tale to a similar one found in Briggs's Folk Tales of Britain, Afanasev's Russian Fairy Tales, and Calvino's Italian Folktales). My favourite part was always Pullman's own comments, which were often astute and entertaining.

Several times I was surprised by a tale, and so looked up another translation. Each time I found that Pullman stayed very close to the original, but just used his own very enjoyable writing style. In the odd situation where he changed something, he explains clearly in his comments what exactly he changed and his reasons for doing so.

There are 209 Grimms Fairy Tales. How many can you name? "Rapunzel," "Hansel and Gretel," "Cinderella," "Little Red Riding Hood," "Sleeping Beauty," "Snow White," "Rumpelstiltskin"? Perhaps you also the "Frog Prince" and "the Robber Bridegroom"? That's only nine tales. I have a theory about this--it's because too many of the other tales are either forgettable or ridiculous. Other than these ones that I knew before I opened this book, I'm coming away with only a few new favourites -- "The Mouse, the Bird and the Sausage" (which is an awesome story that has had my 17 yr old and I in hysterics several times), "The Juniper Tree," "The Goose Girl," and "Lazy Heinz." Pullman often acknowledges the flaws in some of the more forgettable tales.

Recommended for: Anyone who wants an edition of Grimm that is a pleasure to read. The book is not illustrated though, so I'd say it's for older readers -- say 9 to 99. Also, anyone who thinks a personal library isn't complete without an edition of Grimms Brothers. ( )
2 vote Nickelini | Mar 10, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 24 (next | show all)
This collection is issued as a "classic", so it is probably right to aim for a style free of the gothic extravagance of Angela Carter or the contemporary ethics of Jane Yolen or any other highly literary or individual interpretation, but for those who already know the stories this results in a collection which is very good, but not very interesting.
 

» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Grimm, Jakobprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Grimm, Wilhelmmain authorall editionsconfirmed
Pullman, PhilipEditormain authorall editionsconfirmed

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English

None

Book description
Haiku summary
Splendid retelling
Of fifty of Grimms' classic
And obscure folk tales.
(passion4reading)

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 067002497X, Hardcover)

#1 New York Times bestseller Philip Pullman retells the world’s best-loved fairy tales on their 200th anniversary

Two centuries ago, Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm published the first volume of Children’s and Household Tales. Now Philip Pullman, one of the most accomplished authors of our time, makes us fall in love all over again with the immortal tales of the Brothers Grimm.

Pullman retells his fifty favorites, from much-loved stories like “Cinderella” and “Rumpelstiltskin,” “Rapunzel” and “Hansel and Gretel” to lesser-known treasures like “The Three Snake Leaves," "Godfather Death" and "The Girl with No Hands." At  the end of each tale he offers a brief personal commentary, opening a window on the sources of the tales, the various forms they've taken over the centuries and their everlasting appeal.

Suffused with romance and villainy, danger and wit, the Grimms' fairy tales have inspired Pullman's unique creative vision—and his beguiling retellings will draw you back into a world that has long cast a spell on the Western imagination.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:37:12 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Two centuries ago, Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm published the first volume of Children's and Household Tales. Now Philip Pullman, one of the most accomplished authors of our time, makes us fall in love all over again with the immortal tales of the Brothers Grimm.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 5 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
57 wanted4 pay4 pay

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (4.01)
0.5
1
1.5
2 3
2.5 1
3 14
3.5 10
4 39
4.5 5
5 25

Audible.com

An edition of this book was published by Audible.com.

See editions

Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

» Publisher information page

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 95,093,277 books! | Top bar: Always visible