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The Rumpelstiltskin Problem by Vivian Vande…
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The Rumpelstiltskin Problem (2000)

by Vivian Vande Velde

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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» See also 14 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
As a lifelong lover of fairy tales and a fan of Once Upon a Time since its beginning (and hooked since Robert Carlyle graced my television screen as Rumpelstiltskin), I searched our library catalog on a whim to see what a keyword search of Rumpelstiltskin and discovered this gem of short stories published in 2000 through the Ohio Digital Library site. Vivian Vande Velde captured my attention immediately with the introduction about the "Rumpelstiltskin Problem" as she wittingly explained flaws in the original tale and then in the six stories she wrote, set about working out those problems with entertaining results. The stories "Straw Into Gold" and "The Domovoi" were my two personal favorites as the variations on the character of Rumpelstiltskin were sympathetic. Next in line would be the "As Good As Gold" story which sets the story from the king's viewpoint. "A Fairy Tale in Bad Taste" provides an unsavory reason for Rumpelstiltskin wanting a child; "Ms. Rumpelstiltskin" offers the character as a witch who dislikes being called "little man;" lastly, "Papa Rumpelstiltskin" shows what trouble bragging creates for the Miller with humorous results. ( )
  trc2017 | Apr 13, 2017 |
Author is one of my favorites. In this she retells the Rumpelstiltskin story six different ways dealing with all the questions the story raises for us.
  Gmomaj | Oct 5, 2016 |
Enchanting - naturally. And hilarious. Six more plausible versions of the classic fairy tale. Don't forget to read the introduction! ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
"Have you ever wondered just what was going on when that odd little man with the long name stepped up and volunteered to spin straw into gold for the miller's daughter?"
In this book, various miller's daughters confront their deadly situation in different ways, some funny, some scary and some just sad. Vivian Vande Velde has done a great job imagining ways that the miller's daughter could have gotten into the situation in the first place. She details why the father would allow this to happen, what is going on with the king and just who is Rumplestiltskin anyway.

This book was a very quick read. I found the six stories to be very different and very clever. The introduction itself is quite amusing. I found this book in the elementary school library where I volunteer, but I think it would surely appeal to adults as well (maybe even more). Having recently read Rump, the title interested me and the introduction sold the book.

Recommended to:
Middle readers (grades 4 thru 8) and any adults who like fairy tales. ( )
  Jadedog13 | Feb 3, 2016 |
Six "fractured fairy tale" versions of Rumpelstiltskin which the author wrote in response to questions and illogical situations the original story raised for hre. Very funny and creative, with each main character assuming a bad-guy persona in one story or another. These six variations actually enrich and improve upon the original. Good read-aloud.
  Salsabrarian | Feb 2, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Vivian Vande Veldeprimary authorall editionscalculated
Craig, DanCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rinaldi, JenniferCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Once upon a time, before pizzarias or Taco Bells, there was a troll named Rumplestiltskin who began to wonder what a human baby would taste like. - A Fairy Tale In Bad Taste
One upon a time, in the days before Social Security or insurance companies, there lived a miller and his daughter, Della, who were fairly well-off and reasonably happy until the day their mill burned down. - Straw Into Gold
Once upon a time, before home security systems and trained guard dogs, if you lived in Russia the way to keep your house safe and happy was to have a domovoi living beneath your basement. - The Domovoi
Once upon a time, before bread was plastic-wrapped and sold in supermarkets, there lived a miller named Otto and his daughter, Christina. - Papa Rumplestiltskin
Once upon a time, before eyelash curlers and lip liner, there lived a very plain girl by the name of Rumplestiltskin. - Ms. Rumplestiltskin
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0439305292, Paperback)

Why did the miller tell the king his daughter could spin straw into gold in the first place? The story of Rumpelstiltskin is full of holes, says young adult fantasy writer Vivian Vande Velde in the author's note to this delightful group of tales. For instance, why was the dwarf was willing to accept the girl's ring as a bribe when he already knew how to spin unlimited quantities of gold? And why did he want a baby at all? Not to mention the very peculiar ending in which he stamps on the floor, catches his foot in a crack, and in a fit of rage tears himself in two. Excuse me? says Vande Velde.

The skeptical author sets out to remedy these flaws in six different imaginative retellings full of sassy humor that teens will relish. Sticking closely to the spirit and setting of the original, she changes only one or two building blocks in the plot structure and comes up with some surprising results. In one story, the miller's daughter is an obnoxious groupie pursuing the polite and gentle king; in another, Rumpelstiltskin is female; and in a third, the dwarf appears as a troll with a yen to eat human baby who sets up the whole scenario as an attempt to get his hands on a toothsome infant. ("Tastes just like chicken," scoffs his brother-in-law.)

Teen readers will appreciate the wit and freshness of these smart-mouth renditions of a traditional story. (Ages 10 to 14) --Patty Campbell

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:03:16 -0400)

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A collection of variations on the familiar story of a boastful miller and the daughter he claims can spin straw into gold.

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