cover image Once Upon a Time: New Fairy Tales

Once Upon a Time: New Fairy Tales

Edited by Paula Guran. Prime (, $15.95 trade paper (384p) ISBN 978-1-60701-404-1

Despite the subtitle, Guran (The Mammoth Book of Angels and Demons) has actually filled this anthology with adaptations of familiar tales. The stories include urban fantasy (“Warrior Dreams” by Cinda Williams Chima, with grindylows in Lake Erie), near-future science fiction (Caitlín R. Kiernan’s “The Road of Needles,” which adapts “Little Red Riding Hood”), and more traditional retellings (Tanith Lee’s “Below the Sun Beneath,” an adaptation of the Grimms’ “The Worn-Out Dancing Shoes”). A few outstanding works give new perspectives on their progenitor stories (“The Spinning Wheel’s Tale” by Jane Yolen), the fairy-tale genre (“The Coin of Heart’s Desire” by Yoon Ha Lee, one of the few non-European stories), or both (“Eat Me, Drink Me, Love Me” by Christopher Barzak, an adaptation of Christina Rossetti’s long poem “Goblin Market”). Many of the stories require familiarity with the originals, but the abundance of European sources means that shouldn’t be a problem for Western readers. (Nov.)