Monday, August 10, 2020

Help a SurLaLuner: Finding a Fairy Tale: Husband Forgets Underwater Wife


Hello to the collective memories of SurLaLuners!

I've received this request for help in identifying a fairy tale. While the theme of heros/heroines forgetting their spouses/lovers is a fairly common theme in folklore, this one is not specifically coming to mind. Do the details for this tale bring a particular tale to mind for anyone, especially the underwater kingdom element to it?

It involves a man who travels to an underwater kingdom and marries a princess he meets there. He then wants to return to his home to see his parents, and when he does, he forgets all about his wife and his life in the magical land. Does that ring a bell?

Despite my inability to find the story, I suspect it's a common theme. Any fairy tale at all about spending time in a magical kingdom, then losing all memory of it when the hero returns home would work for the book. Do you know of any stories like this?

I have read many tales where forgotten spouses are a theme. But since they are forgotten, usually the spouse who has been forgotten is the hero of the tale since he/she seeks out the spouse with the forgotten memory--after all, the faulty memory has no reason to go searching since he/she doesn't remember there is something to remember! But I can't think of forgotten kingdoms so much myself.

Just leave your suggestions in the comments if the tale sounds familiar. Or feel free to share tales with similar themes--the requestor is looking for tales with the lost memory theme from what I understand although this is the particular one that stands out in his memory.



New Book: A Song of Wraiths and Ruin by Roseanne A. Brown



A Song of Wraiths and Ruin by Roseanne A. Brown was released in June of this year. It is inspired by African folklore, but I don't know which tales specifically. There are many collections of African Folklore available in the SurLaLune Fairy Tales Database.

Book description:

An instant New York Times bestseller!

The first in a gripping fantasy duology inspired by West African folklore in which a grieving crown princess and a desperate refugee find themselves on a collision course to murder each other despite their growing attraction—from debut author Roseanne A. Brown. This New York Times bestseller is perfect for fans of Tomi Adeyemi, Renée Ahdieh, and Sabaa Tahir.

For Malik, the Solstasia festival is a chance to escape his war-stricken home and start a new life with his sisters in the prosperous desert city of Ziran. But when a vengeful spirit abducts his younger sister, Nadia, as payment to enter the city, Malik strikes a fatal deal—kill Karina, Crown Princess of Ziran, for Nadia’s freedom.

But Karina has deadly aspirations of her own. Her mother, the Sultana, has been assassinated; her court threatens mutiny; and Solstasia looms like a knife over her neck. Grief-stricken, Karina decides to resurrect her mother through ancient magic . . . requiring the beating heart of a king. And she knows just how to obtain one: by offering her hand in marriage to the victor of the Solstasia competition.

When Malik rigs his way into the contest, they are set on a heart-pounding course to destroy each other. But as attraction flares between them and ancient evils stir, will they be able to see their tasks to the death?

"Magic creates a centuries-long divide between peoples in this stunning debut novel inspired by North African and West African folklore. An action-packed tale of injustice, magic, and romance, this novel immerses readers in a thrilling world and narrative reminiscent of Children of Blood and Bone." (Publishers Weekly, "An Anti-Racist Children's and YA Reading List")

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Saturday, August 8, 2020

New Book: The Princess Will Save You by Sarah Henning



A Saturday bonus post for a new book that I imagine will appeal to many readers here but doesn't have a direct folklore connection. The Princess Will Save You by Sarah Henning was released last month. And it is a retelling of The Princess Bride (the film and the novel by William Goldman).

Book description:

The Princess Will Save You is a YA fantasy adventure inspired by The Princess Bride, in which a princess must rescue her stable boy true love, from the acclaimed author of Sea Witch, Sarah Henning.

When a princess’s commoner true love is kidnapped to coerce her into a political marriage, she doesn’t give in―she goes to rescue him.

When her warrior father, King Sendoa, mysteriously dies, Princess Amarande of Ardenia is given what would hardly be considered a choice: Marry a stranger at sixteen or lose control of her family’s crown.

But Amarande was raised to be a warrior―not a sacrifice.

In an attempt to force her choice, a neighboring kingdom kidnaps her true love, stable boy Luca. With her kingdom on the brink of civil war and no one to trust, she’ll need all her skill to save him, her future, and her kingdom.

“Full of inconceivable wit, daring adventure, and cunning political machinations…It’s as if Sarah Henning looked into my soul that yearned for a book like The Princess Bride and said―as you wish. And yes, this is a kissing book.” ―Ashley Poston, author of Heart of Iron

“The Princess Will Save You is everything we love about YA fantasy, complete with first love, sweeping adventure, and a fierce heroine who holds her own. There’s something for everyone in this book.” ―Adrienne Young, New York Times bestselling author of The Sky in the Deep

“An action-packed adventure with a fierce heroine that is sure to enthrall! Sarah Henning has created a fantasy narrative that weaves together love and betrayal, pirates and swordplay. Sure to please anyone who grew up loving tales of princesses.” ―Emily Lloyd-Jones, author of The Bone Houses

SurLaLune's Small Print:

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Friday, August 7, 2020

Newish Book: House of Salt and Sorrows by Erin A. Craig



House of Salt and Sorrows by Erin A. Craig was released last year and is now available in paperback.  It's a retelling of Twelve Dancing Princesses which is catnip is for a lot of SurLaLune readers. It has a 3.95 rating on Goodreads.

Book description:

As one by one her beautiful sisters mysteriously die on their isolated island estate, Annaleigh must unravel the curse that haunts her family. Be careful who you dance with...

In a manor by the sea, twelve sisters are cursed.

Annaleigh lives a sheltered life at Highmoor with her sisters and their father and stepmother. Once there were twelve, but loneliness fills the grand halls now that four of the girls' lives have been cut short. Each death was more tragic than the last--the plague, a plummeting fall, a drowning, a slippery plunge--and there are whispers throughout the surrounding villages that the family is cursed by the gods.

Disturbed by a series of ghostly visions, Annaleigh becomes increasingly suspicious that her sister's deaths were no accidents. The girls have been sneaking out every night to attend glittering balls, dancing until dawn in silk gowns and shimmering slippers, and Annaleigh isn't sure whether to try to stop them or to join their forbidden trysts. Because who--or what--are they really dancing with?

When Annaleigh's involvement with a mysterious stranger who has secrets of his own intensifies, it's a race to unravel the darkness that has fallen over her family--before it claims her next. House of Salt and Sorrows is a spellbinding novel filled with magic and the rustle of gossamer skirts down long, dark hallways. Get ready to be swept away.

SurLaLune's Small Print:

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Thursday, August 6, 2020

Bargain Ebook: Bloodleaf by Crystal Smith TODAY ONLY



Bloodleaf (The Bloodleaf Trilogy Book 1) by Crystal Smith is on sale today ONLY for $2.99. It is the first in a trilogy with the second book due out in September. One of its reader reviewers says it draws strong inspiration from The Goose Girl, which is beloved by many SurLaLune readers and doesn't get retold as often. It is YA like most fantasy retellings are these days.

Book description:

A roar of a dark and luscious epic fantasy that’s layered with heady romance, bloodthirsty magic, and ghostly intrigue—an absolutely wicked delight.

Aurelia is a princess, but they call her a witch.

Surrounded by spirits and burdened with forbidden magic, she lives in constant fear of discovery by the witch-hunting Tribunal and their bloodthirsty mobs. When a devastating assassination attempt reveals her magical abilities, Aurelia is forced to flee her country with nothing but her life.

Alone and adrift in an enemy kingdom, Aurelia plans her revenge against the Tribunal, desperate to bring down the dark organization that has wrought terror upon her people for hundreds of years. But there's something deeply amiss in her new home, too, and soon she finds herself swept into a deadly new mystery with a secretive prince, the ghost of an ancient queen, and a poison vine called Bloodleaf.

Aurelia is entangled in a centuries-long game of love, power, and war, and if she can't break free before the Tribunal makes its last move, she may lose far more than her crown.

SurLaLune's Small Print:

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Newish Book: Through the Water Curtain by Cornelia Funke



Through the Water Curtain by Cornelia Funke was released last year and is an interesting concept that I myself wish happened a little more often, if not in book form, at least on authors' websites. Funke, is an internationally bestselling author of YA fantasy and draws inspiration from folklore. Her Reckless series has been shared here on the SurLaLune Blog and has strong influence from the Grimms and other fairy tale collections.

The reader reviews on this book have been mixed, primarily because of expectations, not what was in the description. The volume states clearly that the tales included were selected and introduced by Funke. She did not retell them or even edit them. They are reprints from many various sources. So the experience of reading these is as if she were reading them herself and finding story fodder from them. The introduction and glosses for each tale offer a glimpse into her interests and what fascinated her or captured her imagination as she read and pondered the stories. She also points out their flaws if viewed with modern sensibilities.

Her general introduction discusses the darkness of the tales she heard as a child, the censored and uncensored versions that were about. Interestingly enough, she remembers listening to tales more than reading them, an interesting dichotomy of literary tales that were drawn from the oral and returned to the oral where they best captured her attention. This book didn't seek to censor the tales from their original sources. They are offered as she found them. So they may have content that is questionable to some readers. They are best intended for advanced middle readers and up into adulthood.

As for me, the small collection is fascinating. It contains a few of my personal favorites, ones I have found are often favorites of authors and fairy tale fans, like "The Six Swans" and "Bluebeard." Those tales have inspired countless authors in modern fiction over the last two centuries, include Juliet Marillier for "The Six Swans" and Angela Carter and Kurt Vonnegut for "Bluebeard". Other tales are much lesser known like "Through the Water Curtain" and "The Areca Tree" so even if you are familiar with many tales, you may find a few that are new or at least not very familiar to you. All of the tales come from Europe and Asia, so the around the world description is really limited to two continents.

Book description:

A delightful, diverse selection of fairy tales from around the world by one of our most beloved children's writers.

International bestselling children's author Cornelia Funke has long been inspired and fascinated by fairy tales. This wonderful anthology is Funke's personal selection of fairy tales from all around the world - not just from her native Germany but from Russia, Japan and the Native American tradition. It's the perfect Christmas gift for any young reader wishing to discover the wider world of fairy tales.

This wonderful selection of 13 tales includes:

• The Tale of the Firebird (Russia)
• The Boy Who Drew Cats (Japan)
• The Frog Princess (Ukraine)
• The Six Swans (Germany)
• The Girl Who Gave a Knight a Kiss out of Necessity (Sweden)
• Kotura, Lord of the Winds (Siberia)

SurLaLune's Small Print:

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Wednesday, August 5, 2020

New Book: 101 Middle Eastern Tales and Their Impact on Western Oral Tradition by Dr. Ulrich Marzolph



101 Middle Eastern Tales and Their Impact on Western Oral Tradition (Series in Fairy-Tale Studies) by Prof. Dr. Ulrich Marzolph will be released on August 18, 2020 and is available for pre-order.

Just to be clear, although this title may sound like it is a collection of folktale texts from the Middle East, it is not. The full tale texts are not included. There are many more than 101 individual tales discussed, too. The volume offers a discussion of the tales arranged by theme and motifs instead. I received a copy of this book for review and although I haven't read the entire thing--it is over 700 pages long including the appendices--it is a great reference book for discussion of various ATU (Aarne Thompson Uther) tale types that can be found in the Middle East. Each chapter is devoted to a different ATU tale type. For example, Chapter 2 is "Belling the Cat (ATU 110)" and Chapter 8 is "The Two Hunchbacks (ATU 503)", just two of the tales I am very familiar with in recent years as I have used them in SurLaLune Folklore anthology work. I found some new information to me in each of these chapters despite being very familiar with them since resources in English for these have been limited. This is a great way to learn more about several tale types (101 of them to be exact) you may be less familiar with. And, no, you don't need to be familiar with the ATU tale type system. This volume uses the system as a guide to organize, group and discuss many tales while providing primary and secondary resources to read more. The Works Cited list is a cornucopia of resources, too. Marzolph is one of the leaders in this area of folklore studies and his vast knowledge and experience shows. Overall, this is highly recommended and filled a gap in my extensive folklore library.

Book description:

Against the methodological backdrop of historical and comparative folk narrative research, 101 Middle Eastern Tales and Their Impact on Western Oral Tradition surveys the history, dissemination, and characteristics of over one hundred narratives transmitted to Western tradition from or by the Middle Eastern Muslim literatures (i.e., authored written works in Arabic, Persian, and Ottoman Turkish). For a tale to be included, Ulrich Marzolph considered two criteria: that the tale originates from or at least was transmitted by a Middle Eastern source, and that it was recorded from a Western narrator's oral performance in the course of the nineteenth or twentieth century. The rationale behind these restrictive definitions is predicated on Marzolph's main concern with the long-lasting effect that some of the "Oriental" narratives exercised in Western popular tradition-those tales that have withstood the test of time.

Marzolph focuses on the originally "Oriental" tales that became part and parcel of modern Western oral tradition. Since antiquity, the "Orient" constitutes the quintessential Other vis-à-vis the European cultures. While delineation against this Other served to define and reassure the Self, the "Orient" also constituted a constant source of fascination, attraction, and inspiration. Through oral retellings, numerous tales from Muslim tradition became an integral part of European oral and written tradition in the form of learned treatises, medieval sermons, late medieval fabliaux, early modern chapbooks, contemporary magazines, and more. In present times, when national narcissisms often acquire the status of strongholds delineating the Us against the Other, it is imperative to distinguish, document, visualize, and discuss the extent to which the West is not only indebted to the Muslim world but also shares common features with Muslim narrative tradition. 101 Middle Eastern Tales and Their Impact on Western Oral Tradition is an important contribution to this debate and a vital work for scholars, students, and readers of folklore and fairy tales.

SurLaLune's Small Print:

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Tuesday, August 4, 2020

New Book: Re-Orienting the Fairy Tale: Contemporary Adaptations across Cultures



Re-Orienting the Fairy Tale: Contemporary Adaptations across Cultures (Series in Fairy-Tale Studies) by Mayako Murai and Luciana Cardi is officially released on August 25, 2020. It is available for pre-order.

Book description:

Re-Orienting the Fairy Tale: Contemporary Adaptations across Cultures seeks to "re-orient" the fairy tale across different cultures, media, and disciplines and proposes new approaches to the ever-expanding fairy-tale web in a global context with a special emphasis on non-Euro-American materials. Editors Mayako Murai and Luciana Cardi bring together emerging and established researchers in various disciplines from around the world to decenter existing cultural and methodological assumptions underlying fairy-tale studies and suggest new avenues into the increasingly complex world of fairy-tale cultures today.

Divided into three parts, the fourteen essays cover a range of materials from Hawaiian wonder tales to Japanese heroine tales to Spanish fairy-tale film adaptation. Chapters include an invitation from Cristina Bacchilega to explore the possibilities related to the uncanny processes of both disorientation and re-orientation taking place in the "journeys" of wonder tales across multiple media and cultures. Aleksandra Szugajew's chapter outlines the strategies adopted by recent Hollywood live-action fairy-tale films to attract adult audiences and reveals how this new genre offers a form of global entertainment and a forum that invites reflection on various social and cultural issues in today's globalizing world. Katsuhiko Suganuma draws on queer theory and popular musicology to analyze the fairy-tale intertexts in the works of the Japanese all-female band Princess Princess and demonstrate that popular music can be a medium through which the queer potential of ostensibly heteronormative traditional fairy tales may emerge. Daniela Kato's chapter explores the ecological dimensions of Carter's literary fairy tale and offers an ecofeminist interpretation of a fairy-tale forest as a borderland that lies beyond the nature-culture dichotomy.

Readers will find inspiration and new directions in the cross-cultural and interdisciplinary approaches to fairy tales provided by Re-Orienting the Fairy Tale.

Reviews:

Re-Orienting the Fairy Tale represents a significant contribution to an emerging area of inquiry in which there is a great deal of intellectual interest. Since many of the themes explored are not treated comprehensively elsewhere, it will prove attractive to a readership seeking to understand cutting-edge developments in the field of study. The book is also socially and intellectually important in the challenges it makes to hierarchical and binaristic thinking and in its determination to revalue indigenous storytelling cultures that have been marginalized by neo-imperial global media.

– Andrew Teverson, author of The Fairy Tale World

In its Puckish way, this volume pleasantly disorients scholars who are familiar only with the path of Eurocentric concepts of fairy tales. In so doing, it leads them to robust storytelling traditions from many non-Western cultures. Meanwhile, contributors’ postmodern strategies, lucidly developed, offer provocative ways to appreciate familiar Western tales.

– Bill Ellis, professor emeritus of English and American studies, Penn State University

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Monday, June 15, 2020

Bargain Ebook: A Spark of White Fire by Sangu Mandanna



A Spark of White Fire (Celestial Trilogy Book 1) by Sangu Mandanna is on sale in ebook format for $1.99. This draws inspiration from India folklore as described below.

Book description:

Named one of the best 25 space opera books by BookRiot!

The first book in a scifi retelling of the Mahabrahata. When Esmae wins a contest of skill, she sets off events that trigger an inevitable and unwinnable war that pits her against the family she would give anything to return to.

In a universe of capricious gods, dark moons, and kingdoms built on the backs of spaceships, a cursed queen sends her infant daughter away, a jealous uncle steals the throne of Kali from his nephew, and an exiled prince vows to take his crown back.

Raised alone and far away from her home on Kali, Esmae longs to return to her family. When the King of Wychstar offers to gift the unbeatable, sentient warship Titania to a warrior that can win his competition, she sees her way home: she’ll enter the competition, reveal her true identity to the world, and help her famous brother win back the crown of Kali.

It’s a great plan. Until it falls apart.

Inspired by the Mahabharata and other ancient Indian stories, A Spark of White Fire is a lush, sweeping space opera about family, curses, and the endless battle between jealousy and love.

SurLaLune's Small Print:

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Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Bargain Ebook: Thorn by Intisar Khanani



Thorn (Dauntless Path Book 1) by Intisar Khanani is on sale in ebook format for $2.99. This book is particularly exciting since it is a retelling of The Goose Girl which doesn't get retold often enough IMHO.

Book description:

Hunted meets The Wrath and the Dawn in this bold fairytale retelling—where court intrigue, false identities, and dark secrets will thrill fans of classic and contemporary fantasy alike.

Princess Alyrra has always longed to escape the confines of her royal life, but when her mother betroths her to a powerful prince in a distant kingdom, she has little hope for a better future.

Until Alyrra arrives at her new kingdom, where a mysterious sorceress robs her of both her identity and her role as princess—and Alyrra seizes on the opportunity to start a new life for herself as a goose girl.

But as Alyrra uncovers dangerous secrets about her new world, including a threat to the prince himself, she knows she can’t remain silent forever. With the fate of the kingdom at stake, Alyrra is caught between two worlds, and ultimately must decide who she is and what she stands for.

Originally self-published as an ebook and now brought to life with completely revised text, Thorn also features an additional short story set in-world, The Bone Knife.

SurLaLune's Small Print:

As an Amazon Associate, the SurLaLune Fairy Tale site earns a percentage from qualifying purchases as a referral incentive which helps support the site. Your cost does not increase by using the links on this site. Read SurLaLune's Privacy Policy here.

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Two of Marissa Meyer's Lunar Chronicle Books on Sale TODAY ONLY



Scarlet (The Lunar Chronicles Book 2) and Cress (The Lunar Chronicles Book 3) by Marissa Meyer are on sale today only for $2.99 each. They are usually in the $7-8 range.

Description for Scarlet:

Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of Marissa Meyer's bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She's trying to break out of prison--even though if she succeeds, she'll be the Commonwealth's most wanted fugitive.

Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit's grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn't know about her grandmother or the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother's whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.

An NPR Best Book of 2013

Description for Cress:

In this third book in Marissa Meyer's bestselling Lunar Chronicles series, Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, now with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they're plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and prevent her army from invading Earth.

Their best hope lies with Cress, a girl trapped on a satellite since childhood who's only ever had her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker. Unfortunately, she's being forced to work for Queen Levana, and she's just received orders to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice.

When a daring rescue of Cress goes awry, the group is splintered. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a higher price than she'd ever expected. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing prevent her marriage to Emperor Kai, especially the cyborg mechanic. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only hope the world has.

SurLaLune's Small Print:

As an Amazon Associate, the SurLaLune Fairy Tale site earns a percentage from qualifying purchases as a referral incentive which helps support the site. Your cost does not increase by using the links on this site. Read SurLaLune's Privacy Policy here.

Monday, May 18, 2020

SurLaLune New Site Under Switch Over

Hi All,

Just a heads up that an abundance of bad links on the old site to NSFW and thus not safe for me has precipitated an early switch over from the old SurLaLune site to the old one.

The site will site be at surlalunefairytales.com but it will be quite different and all old links will be broken on Wikipedia, etc. It was a necessary event to move to a new and hopefully improved site!

The new site is in the process of propagating or switching over. There will be some broken links for a time, too.

The site email address is changing, too, to fairytales at surlalunefairytales dot com.

So lots of changes. And they will take a while but school is now over or nearly over for most visitors.

Thanks and I'll be in touch soon!

Heidi

Monday, April 27, 2020

Bargain Ebook TODAY ONLY: Animal Folk Tales of Britain and Ireland by Sharon Jacksties for $1.99



Animal Folk Tales of Britain and Ireland by Sharon Jacksties is on sale for $1.99 TODAY ONLY in ebook format.

Book description:

Stories and animals have long travelled the same routes. Through our heritage of charming, quirky and profound tales, you will find yourself re-acquainted with Britain’s wondrous fauna.Find out how hedgehog ended up with spines and what makes him scuttle so fast, discover how pigs saved a prince from leprosy and why the wealthy lord was so intent on capturing the black fox.Sharon Jacksties’ wonderful book combines traditional stories, little-known zoological facts and true anecdotes to create a treasure trove of stories for animal lovers of every kind.

SurLaLune's Small Print:

As an Amazon Associate, the SurLaLune Fairy Tale site earns a percentage from qualifying purchases as a referral incentive which helps support the site. Your cost does not increase by using the links on this site. Read SurLaLune's Privacy Policy here.


Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Bargain Ebook: TODAY ONLY: Snow White, Blood Red (Fairy Tale Anthologies Book 1) for $1.99




Snow White, Blood Red (Fairy Tale Anthologies Book 1) by Ellen Datlow (Editor), Terri Windling (Editor) is one sale TODAY ONLY for $1.99 in ebook format.

Book description:

Fairy tales retold—with a twist—from “some of our best storytellers” including Neil Gaiman, Gahan Wilson, Tanith Lee, and others (The Washington Post).

In this “no holds barred . . . nightmarish . . . provocative” collection, bestselling and award-winning fantasy masters put a dark, disturbing, and erotic spin on your favorite bedtime stories—and give you something entirely new to trouble your dreams (The New York Times Book Review).

A boy is haunted through adulthood by a soul-eating creature that lies forever in wait under Neil Gaiman’s “Troll Bridge”; a melancholy amphibian shares his most private fantasies with a therapist in Gahan Wilson’s “The Frog Prince”; in Tanith Lee’s “Snow-Drop,” a lonely artist invites seven circus performers into her home to satisfy an obsession; in Steve Rasnic Tem’s “Little Poucet,” a band of lost brothers find refuge and terror with a hungry family in the woods; and Wendy Wheeler delves into the deviant psyche of the predatory male in “Little Red.” Also featuring Nancy Kress, Charles de Lint, Melanie Tem, Patricia A. McKillip, Jack Dann, and others, all paying a revisit to our favorite fairy tales in ways you’ve never dared to imagine.

SurLaLune's Small Print:

As an Amazon Associate, the SurLaLune Fairy Tale site earns a percentage from qualifying purchases as a referral incentive which helps support the site. Your cost does not increase by using the links on this site. Read SurLaLune's Privacy Policy here.

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Watch an Opera: Little Red's Most Unusual Day: Activities During Corona


LITTLE RED’S
MOST UNUSUAL DAY
Created by John Davies and shared with permission
Music by Offenbach and Rossini


The Nashville Opera intended to tour Nashville, TN area schools with performances of Little Red's Most Unusual Day this spring. Since those plans had to be cancelled thanks to Corona, the Nashville Opera has shared a video of the performance online instead. They also have a Story Board, a Mini Guide and Coloring Pages to accompany the performance video on their Little Red's Most Unusual Day page.

I live in the Nashville area and am thrilled to offer a little bit of fairy tale related art from one of my local arts organizations!

Here's the video embedded:

Bargain Ebook: The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden




The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden is on sale for $1.99 in ebook format.

Book description:

NATIONAL BESTSELLER • A magical debut novel for readers of Naomi Novik’s Uprooted, Erin Morgenstern’s The Night Circus, and Neil Gaiman’s myth-rich fantasies, The Bear and the Nightingale spins an irresistible spell as it announces the arrival of a singular talent with a gorgeous voice.

At the edge of the Russian wilderness, winter lasts most of the year and the snowdrifts grow taller than houses. But Vasilisa doesn’t mind—she spends the winter nights huddled around the embers of a fire with her beloved siblings, listening to her nurse’s fairy tales. Above all, she loves the chilling story of Frost, the blue-eyed winter demon, who appears in the frigid night to claim unwary souls. Wise Russians fear him, her nurse says, and honor the spirits of house and yard and forest that protect their homes from evil.

After Vasilisa’s mother dies, her father goes to Moscow and brings home a new wife. Fiercely devout, city-bred, Vasilisa’s new stepmother forbids her family from honoring the household spirits. The family acquiesces, but Vasilisa is frightened, sensing that more hinges upon their rituals than anyone knows.

And indeed, crops begin to fail, evil creatures of the forest creep nearer, and misfortune stalks the village. All the while, Vasilisa’s stepmother grows ever harsher in her determination to groom her rebellious stepdaughter for either marriage or confinement in a convent.

As danger circles, Vasilisa must defy even the people she loves and call on dangerous gifts she has long concealed—this, in order to protect her family from a threat that seems to have stepped from her nurse’s most frightening tales.

Praise for The Bear and the Nightingale

“Vasya [is] a clever, stalwart girl determined to forge her own path in a time when women had few choices.”—The Christian Science Monitor

“Stunning . . . will enchant readers from the first page. . . . with an irresistible heroine who wants only to be free of the bonds placed on her gender and claim her own fate.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Utterly bewitching . . . a lush narrative . . . an immersive, earthy story of folk magic, faith, and hubris, peopled with vivid, dynamic characters, particularly clever, brave Vasya, who outsmarts men and demons alike to save her family.”—Booklist (starred review)

“Arden’s supple, sumptuous first novel transports the reader to a version of medieval Russia where history and myth coexist.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

SurLaLune's Small Print:

As an Amazon Associate, the SurLaLune Fairy Tale site earns a percentage from qualifying purchases as a referral incentive which helps support the site. Your cost does not increase by using the links on this site. Read SurLaLune's Privacy Policy here.

Monday, March 30, 2020

Volunteer Proofreading for SurLaLune Tales Database: Activities During Corona



So I mentioned a few weeks ago that I was thinking of ways to provide volunteer opportunities during this time of Corona Isolation.

For many of us, the most important thing we can do right now is stay home and practice social distancing. For those of you looking for a way to do volunteer work, this is one opportunity.

The new version of SurLaLune Fairy Tales site--which is still in beta and hasn't officially launched yet--has a new tales database under construction. The database is a repository of tales from all around the world, classified by ATU number or Migratory Legend number when possible. Currently, the database has over 135 books in it, a few still under construction, and roughly 5,000 tales already input. You can see the database under construction at http://dev.surlalunefairytales.com/books.php.

Yes, that's a lot, but it doesn't come near to what is available to make SurLaLune an even more robust resource, free to readers around the world. But it takes time to proofread the many books and tales before they can be entered. Books published 1924 or earlier are now in the public domain in the U.S. and qualify for entry. Many have been scanned as images and can be found in online repositories like Google Books and the Internet Archive.

This week--or longer if necessary--I am asking for volunteers to help proofread copy for Fairy Tales from South Africa by Mrs. E. J. Bourhill and Mrs. J. B. Drake, first published in 1908. Digitized copies of the books are available at:

https://books.google.com/books?id=cs0WAAAAYAAJ&printsec=frontcover#v=onepage&q&f=false

and

https://archive.org/details/fairytalesfroms00hollgoog/mode/2up

There you will also find computer OCR text of the tales but they are riddled with errors from the computer scanning. This book's Plain Text copy starts at https://books.google.com/books?ppis=_e&printsec=frontcover&id=cs0WAAAAYAAJ&output=text You do not need to start from scratch in producing the text unless retyping it yourself is your groove. I have a friend who types a 100+ words a minute with precise accuracy and she prefers to type instead of proofread. Most of the rest of us tend to like proofing the existing OCR text instead.

So to participate, choose one tale from the list below, and produce a proofread text copy of it. Then email a copy of the tale to me at heidi @ surlalunefairyatles.com for formatting and insertion into the SurLaLune Fairy Tales database at http://dev.surlalunefairytales.com/book.php?id=143.

If you'd like to volunteer, please post your name in the comments and claim the tale. A few have already been done by me and entered.  Check the comments to be sure your tale hasn't already been claimed. You can do more than one tale, too, of course!

Since this is a volunteer project, you will also get credit for your contribution in the notes to the tale. You can dedicate it to someone. For example, I can add:

This tale was proofread and submitted to the SurLaLune Fairy Tales Database by Anne Shirley in loving memory of Matthew Cuthbert.

Or anything like that within reason.

Here is the list of tales with a short style guide. You can paste your final proofed text straight into an email to me. No need to create a document to send but you can use Google Docs if you prefer and send me a link to that.

If you have more questions, please post them in the comments and I will reply and update this with answers. I'm sure I've forgotten something despite pondering this for a few weeks now.

TALE
VOLUNTEER
Introduction: To All Children Who Still Love Fairy Tales
Natalie
Setuli; or, The King of the Birds
Natalie
Story of the King's Son and the Magic Song, The
Natalie
Story of the Little Birds Who Lived in a Cave, The
Natalie
Story of the Shining Princess, The
Lena3982
Rabbit Prince, The

Unnatural Mother, The

Three Little Eggs, The

Serpent's Bride, The: Part I.
Heidi Anne Heiner 
Serpent's Bride, The: Part II.
Heidi Anne Heiner 
Fairy Bird, The

Cock's Kraal, The

Baboon-Skins
Heidi Anne Heiner 
Reward of Industry, The

Story of Semai-mai, The: Part I.

Story of Semai-mai, The: Part II.

Fairy Frog, The

Nya-Nya Bulembu; or, The Moss-Green Princess
Heidi Anne Heiner 
Enchanted Buck, The
Heidi Anne Heiner 
Beauty and the Beast, The
Bonnie
White Dove, The
Lena3982

Some standardized styles that make it easier for me to quickly format the text:

1. Do not indent any paragraphs but put double spaces between them.

2. For copy that needs to be indented, please don't. Just keep it together single spaced--do not double space between lines of the copy.

For example:

Run, run!
As fast as you can!
You can't catch me,
I'm the Gingerbread Man!

3. For footnotes, put the footnote number in the tale's text like this [1]. Then add the footnote itself to the end of the copy with a [1]: in front of it.

For example:

"Merci," [1] she said to her readers.

FOOTNOTES

[1]: Merci: Thank you!

Saturday, March 28, 2020

New Old Book: Johnny Breadless: A Pacifist Fairy Tale by Paul Valliant-Couturier and Prof. Jack Zipes



Johnny Breadless: A Pacifist Fairy Tale by Paul Valliant-Couturier (Author), Prof. Jack Zipes (Editor) was released earlier this month. I have a review copy on my desk, but haven't had a chance to read it yet. I say this is a new old book because it is a new edition of a long out of print folklore book. Zipes' current mission is to resurrect these "lost" folklore related books for new generations. Zipes provides an introduction explaining the significance of this book and why it was chosen for reprint with a new English translation.

Book description:

During World War I at Christmas time in 1914 there were sudden widespread unofficial ceasefires along the Western Front organized by the French, British, and German soldiers. They crossed trenches to exchange food, souvenirs, and ideas. In some cases they played soccer, sang Christmas carols, held burial ceremonies, and exchanged prisoners of war. The ceasefires were also held at various places in 1915. However, by 1916, the war had become more bitter, and the officers in the French, British, and German armies squashed the ceasefires. Killing was much more important than peacemaking.

Paul Vaillant-Couturier (1892-1937) was one of the French soldiers among those who celebrated truce. As a young man from a well-to-do bourgeois family in Paris, he had never thought he would one day fight for France and kill Germans. His parents were successful singers and actors, and as he indicated in his fictional autobiography, he was groomed to become a professional lawyer or engineer. However, he followed in his parents' footsteps and became an artist. Yet, after enlisting in the French army and serving in the infantry and artillery, he came to realize how cruel war was and caused the deaths of thousands of young men who sacrificed their lives to protect the interests of the ruling classes. By the time he was dismissed in 1919, he emerged as a pacifist and socialist with five medals of honor for heroism. From this point of his life, he went on to become a major journalist and politician; he was one of the founders of the French communist party and served as editor of the left-wing newspaper L'Humanité. He died in 1937 due to wounds from an assassination attempt.

Concerned about the future of young people, Vaillant-Couturier published numerous books about the war, and one of his most significant works was Jean sans pain (Johnny Breadless, 1921). It describes a much different education than he had received, for Johnny Breadless is an orphan and does not understand why and how his parents died and why there is no help for him. It is only after he encounters an amazing rabbit who takes him on a trip to various parts of France during World War I that Johnny begins to grasp the true conditions that lead to the exploitation of common people and to wars that benefit the rich. It is in this remarkable fairy-tale novel that a ceasefire takes place-one that gives Johnny hope that people can live together in peace. It is a truce that Vaillant-Courturer "waged" for most of his life.

SurLaLune's Small Print:

As an Amazon Associate, the SurLaLune Fairy Tale site earns a percentage from qualifying purchases as a referral incentive which helps support the site. Your cost does not increase by using the links on this site. Read SurLaLune's Privacy Policy here.

Friday, March 27, 2020

Bargain Ebook: TODAY ONLY: A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer for $1.99




TODAY ONLY: A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer is on sale in ebook format for $1.99. Catnip for many of you since this is a Beauty and the Beast retelling!

Book description:

In a lush, contemporary fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast, Brigid Kemmerer gives readers another compulsively readable romance perfect for fans of Marissa Meyer.

Fall in love, break the curse.

It once seemed so easy to Prince Rhen, the heir to Emberfall. Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year over and over, he knew he could be saved if a girl fell for him. But that was before he learned that at the end of each autumn, he would turn into a vicious beast hell-bent on destruction. That was before he destroyed his castle, his family, and every last shred of hope.

Nothing has ever been easy for Harper. With her father long gone, her mother dying, and her brother barely holding their family together while constantly underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy, she learned to be tough enough to survive. But when she tries to save someone else on the streets of Washington, DC, she's instead somehow sucked into Rhen's cursed world.

Break the curse, save the kingdom.

A prince? A monster? A curse? Harper doesn't know where she is or what to believe. But as she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land, she begins to understand what's at stake. And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm, his hope comes flooding back. But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall . . . and it will take more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin.

SurLaLune's Small Print:

As an Amazon Associate, the SurLaLune Fairy Tale site earns a percentage from qualifying purchases as a referral incentive which helps support the site. Your cost does not increase by using the links on this site. Read SurLaLune's Privacy Policy here.

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Bargain Ebook: TODAY ONLY: The Gold-Son by Carrie Anne Noble for $.99



The Gold-Son by Carrie Anne Noble is on sale TODAY ONLY for 99 cents on Amazon. This book draws on folklore about leprechauns and fae for inspiration.

Book Description:

All sixteen-year-old Tommin wants is to make beautiful shoes and care for his beloved grandmother, but his insatiable need to steal threatens to destroy everything. Driven by a curse that demands more and more gold, he’s sure to get caught eventually.

When mysterious Lorcan Reilly arrives in town with his “niece,” Eve, Tommin believes the fellow wants to help him. Instead, Lorcan whisks him off to the underground realm of the Leprechauns, where, alongside Eve, he’s forced to prepare to become one of them.

As Lorcan’s plans for his “gold-children” are slowly revealed, Tommin and Eve plan their escape. But with Tommin’s humanity slipping away, the fate-crossed pair has everything to lose unless they can find a way to outsmart a magical curse centuries in the making.

SurLaLune's Small Print:

As an Amazon Associate, the SurLaLune Fairy Tale site earns a percentage from qualifying purchases as a referral incentive which helps support the site. Your cost does not increase by using the links on this site. Read SurLaLune's Privacy Policy here.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Read a New Book: Smoke Bitten by Patricia Briggs: Activities During Corona



Smoke Bitten (A Mercy Thompson Novel Book 12) by Patricia Briggs was released last week and was one of my escape hatches from Coronavirus Isolation last week. I've been reading Briggs' for years and years. This newest entry in her Mercy Thompson series is fun and particularly suitable for SurLaLune (several in the series are) because of the appearance of fairy tales in it. Diamonds and Toads provides some inspiration. Baba Yaga is a recurring character who makes an appearance. And so much of the world building uses folklore and fairy tales in general.

In this one, another well-known fairy tale character is one of the villains in the book. It's a built-up reveal that fairy tale fans may pick up on earlier than others--the clues are fair and accurate--but I don't want to ruin it by saying who. However, it was a fun element of the book for me.

Mercy Thompson, car mechanic and shapeshifter, faces a threat unlike any other in this thrilling entry in the #1 New York Times bestselling series.

I am Mercedes Athena Thompson Hauptman.

My only “superpowers” are that I turn into a thirty-five pound coyote and fix Volkswagens. But I have friends in odd places and a pack of werewolves at my back. It looks like I'm going to need them.

Centuries ago, the fae dwelt in Underhill—until she locked her doors against them. They left behind their great castles and troves of magical artifacts. They abandoned their prisoners and their pets. Without the fae to mind them, those creatures who remained behind roamed freely through Underhill wreaking havoc. Only the deadliest survived.

Now one of those prisoners has escaped. It can look like anyone, any creature it chooses. But if it bites you, it controls you. It lives for chaos and destruction. It can make you do anything—even kill the person you love the most. Now it is here, in the Tri-Cities. In my territory.

It won't, can't, remain.

Not if I have anything to say about it.

SurLaLune's Small Print:

As an Amazon Associate, the SurLaLune Fairy Tale site earns a percentage from qualifying purchases as a referral incentive which helps support the site. Your cost does not increase by using the links on this site. Read SurLaLune's Privacy Policy here.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Read Fairy Tale Review's The Coral Issue for Free: Activities During Coronavirus



Read some new fairy tale and folklore related short stories, poems, and such for free!

Tweeted yesterday by Fairy Tale Review:

"Fairy tales to the rescue. The Coral Issue (2020) has just been made *free* to readers through April 30. Readers, enjoy. Huge gratitude for saying yes when we asked, @WSUPress and @JSTOR."

You can read the entire issue for free for the next six-ish weeks at https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.13110/fairtalerevi.16.issue-1.

If you are unfamiliar with Fairy Tale Review:

Fairy Tale Review is an annual literary journal dedicated to publishing new fairy-tale fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. The journal seeks to expand the conversation about fairy tales among practitioners, scholars, and general readers. Contents reflect a diverse spectrum of literary artists working with fairy tales in many languages and styles

And each edition is a shout out to the work of Andrew Lang and his wife Leonora Lang and their colored fairy books. Because even if only his name was on the cover, the colored fairy books work was predominantly hers and built on his public persona as a folklorist. So both husband and wife were important to the series' production and success. I just have to add that because I am a big fan of Leonora Lang's contributions to folklore.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Lego's Hans Christian Andersen Set: Activities During Corona



I am thinking about some kind of Lego Fairy Tale challenge for Activities During Corona. I haven't finished thinking it through--although I plan to keep it simple--and have to emphasize it is in no way connected with the Lego company, of course. For inspiration, I went web surfing for some fairy tale related Lego builds.

I somehow missed the release of LEGO 40291 Creative Storybook Set (307 Pieces) (Hans Christian Anderson) a while back! Even when I am not actively posting on the SurLaLune blog, I am always noticing and keeping my own lists of fairy tale related items. This set is a natural for Lego since they share their homeland of Denmark with Hans Christian Andersen. Just looking at it reminded me of my own trip to Copenhagen in 2017 when I got to see many HCA related places and pieces. I loved Copenhagen and hope to return someday for another visit.

This set was a free gift with purchase item and I missed this although I even get the Lego catalogs and have for years. I have many, many Lego fans in my family.

This set, reminiscent of the Once Upon a Brick set with it's open book design, depicts Andersen sitting on a park bench, writing one of his tales. The opposite page portrays a scene from The Ugly Duckling. It's still fairly easy to find through online retailers, but not Lego themselves. My links are to Amazon but you can hunt around for it online if you are interested in it.


SurLaLune's Small Print:

As an Amazon Associate, the SurLaLune Fairy Tale site earns a percentage from qualifying purchases as a referral incentive which helps support the site. Your cost does not increase by using the links on this site. Read SurLaLune's Privacy Policy here.

Bargain Ebook: Spindle Fire by Lexa Hillyer




And because reading is really my own favorite activity, Corona sheltering or not, I will be posting more books to read, too.

Spindle Fire by Lexa Hillyer is on sale in ebook format for $1.99. This one is a Sleeping Beauty inspired novel. It features two sisters, an unusual construct in Sleeping Beauty tales, but a fascinating way to deal with the sleep curse. All links are to Amazon, see small print below.

Book description:

Half sisters Isabelle and Aurora are polar opposites: Isabelle is the king's headstrong illegitimate daughter, whose sight was tithed by faeries; Aurora, beautiful and sheltered, was tithed her sense of touch and her voice on the same day. Despite their differences, the sisters have always been extremely close.

And then everything changes with a single drop of Aurora's blood--and a sleep so deep it cannot be broken. As the faerie queen and her army of Vultures prepare to march, Isabelle must race to find a prince who can awaken her sister with the kiss of true love and seal their two kingdoms in an alliance against the queen.

Isabelle crosses land and sea; unearthly, thorny vines rise up the palace walls: and whispers of revolt travel in the ashes on the wind. The kingdom falls to ruin under layers of snow. Meanwhile, Aurora wakes up in a strange and enchanted world, where a mysterious hunter may be the secret to her escape . . . or the reason for her to stay.

Spindle Fire is a lush fantasy set in the dwindling, deliciously corrupt world of the fae and featuring two truly unforgettable heroines.

SurLaLune's Small Print:

As an Amazon Associate, the SurLaLune Fairy Tale site earns a percentage from qualifying purchases as a referral incentive which helps support the site. Your cost does not increase by using the links on this site. Read SurLaLune's Privacy Policy here.

Monday, March 16, 2020

From the Brothers Grimm Series on Folkstreams Vimeo Channel: Activities During Coronavirus


Last week one tweet I read that made me laugh was a mother stating emphatically that she's not going to do anything educational while stuck at home with her young kids. They would watch too much tv. They would eat too much junk. Essentially, they would escape anyway they could during the Corona shutdown. I laughed. I liked that she was lowering her expectations and not putting too much pressure on herself. But even those activities will get old in my opinion, so I will keep looking for fairy tale related options to share. Fairy tales and folklore are about surviving trying times.

But on the note of watching TV, I wanted to share links to the From the Brothers Grimm series by Tom Davenport. These are rentable for a few dollars each on the Folkstreams Vimeo Channel. This is just an FYI service from SurLaLune--there is no affiliate earnings with these. Davenport Films made these many years ago so they are not HD and have a folksy feel. They are also mostly set in Appalachia. They are more suitable for older kids, I'd say 3rd grade and up.

I've linked and embedded the films below but some may not embed due to privacy settings. Just follow the links to learn more. They are all viewable for a $1.95 month long rental each.

My husband's favorite (and thus one of my sentimental favorites, too) is Soldier Jack or The Man Who Caught Death in a Sack:


Soldier Jack or The Man Who Caught Death in a Sack from Folkstreams on Vimeo.

Jack and the Dentist's Daughter


Jack and the Dentist's Daughter from Folkstreams on Vimeo.

I remember when this aired on PBS, the last film they produced, Willa: An American Snow White:


Willa: An American Snow White from Folkstreams on Vimeo.

Hansel & Gretel: An Appalachian Version


Hansel & Gretel: An Appalachian Version from Folkstreams on Vimeo.

Ashpet: An American Cinderella


Ashpet: An American Cinderella from Folkstreams on Vimeo.

Rapunzel, Rapunzel


Rapunzel, Rapunzel from Folkstreams on Vimeo.

Mutzmag or The Girl Who Killed the Cannibals. This tale appears in many of the strong women of folklore collections.


Mutzmag or The Girl Who Killed the Cannibals from Folkstreams on Vimeo.

The Frog King


The Frog King from Folkstreams on Vimeo.

Bristlelip is a version of King Thrushbeard.


Bristlelip from Folkstreams on Vimeo.

Bearskin or The Man Who Didn't Wash for Seven Years--Another favorite tale of mine. Really gets the feel of how disgusting Bearskin is!


Bearskin or The Man Who Didn't Wash for Seven Years from Folkstreams on Vimeo.

The Goose Girl


The Goose Girl from Folkstreams on Vimeo.