Sunday, April 28, 2013

Because I'm Going Through Grimm Withdrawal.

There is no cable or "regular" t.v. at my house.  There is only DVD/Blu-Ray and Netflix.  

I've become increasingly interested in all things Grimm, so my husband bought the first season of the NBC series on Blu-Ray.  We both got hooked quickly.  The second season is currently nearing an end on NBC and I understand it has been renewed for a third season.

The problem is we won't be seeing the current season for a while, a.k.a. when it is released on Blu-Ray (probably some time in the Fall). Boo.

In honor of our new love of a t.v. series and the "putting on hold" of that new love, here's a thematic bibliography I compiled on some (fairly recent) books with a Grimm theme/connection.  It is in no way extensive because there are so many writers and readers fascinated by Grimm tales and the retelling/changing/expanding of those tales.

Thematic Bibliography:  Grimm-Inspired Fantasy
Compiled by Catherine Salcedo

Buckley, Michael. (2007). The Fairy Tale Detectives (The Sisters Grimm, Book 1). 
New York: Harry N. Abrams.

Two sisters discover they are in the line of the Grimm Brothers and have inherited their legacy.  This includes protecting all the characters the brothers wrote about (because they are real and in hiding).

• New York Times Best-seller
• Borders Books & Music Original Voices Nominee
• An Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award Winner
• Washington Post Kids Book of the Week

Readers will definitely have to be up on their folktales, as well as children's lit classics in general, to catch all the references in this terrific, head-spinning series opener. Dumped roughly out of foster care into the arms of Relda, a twinkly-eyed woman claiming to be their grandma, Sabrina and Daphne Grimm, 11 and seven, find themselves in Ferryport Landing, a seemingly normal New York town originally (and more accurately) dubbed Fairyport Landing. It's inhabited by the likes of Mayor Charming, three chubby cops named Boarman, Swineheart and Hamstead and vulpine Mr. Canis--all transported overseas for their own safety long ago by four-times-Great Grandpa Wilhelm Grimm. Borrowing a flying carpet and a certain pair of silver slippers from a fashion-conscious Magic Mirror, Sabrina and Daphne quickly find themselves springing the renowned Jack from jail to help deal with a destructive giant who has snatched Relda. All is, however, not as it seems. Rich in well-set-up surprises and imaginatively tweaked characters, this tongue-in-cheek frolic features both a pair of memorable young sleuths and a madcap plot with plenty of leads into future episodes. (Fantasy. 10-12)
THE SISTERS GRIMM: Book One: The Fairy-Tale Detectives. Kirkus Reviews, 19487428, 10/1/2005, Vol. 73, Issue 19

I would definitely include the entire series.  They are fun and entertaining for students and allow for excellent connections with other literature!
Funke, C. (2010). Reckless. New York: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers.

Jacob must work to rectify his younger brother’s mistake that caused him (Will) to transform into a stone-covered killing machine.
Awards:  None yet!

Funke deftly escorts readers on another fantasy adventure, this time to dark, enchanting Mirrorworld, a fairy-tale land inhabited by humans, faerie creatures and the Goyls, a warring stone race. Discovering a magical mirror with the evocative message, "The mirror will open only for he [sic] who cannot see himself," 12-year-old Jacob Reckless travels through it in search of his missing father. For 12 years Jacob secretly returns as a treasure seeker, trading in magical objects and creatures, until his younger brother Will follows him, is clawed by a Goyl and turns into stone. Battling time, Jacob confronts dangers in an abandoned gingerbread house, Sleeping Beauty's thorn castle, the Red Fairy's bower and the Goyl king's towers as he seeks the Dark Fairy to remove Will's evil spell. The fluid, fast-paced narrative exposes Jacob's complex character, his complicated sibling relationship and a densely textured world brimming with vile villains and fairy-tale detritus. An unresolved ending hints at future journeys through the mirror, while spot-art pencil sketches evoke the Grimm atmosphere. Masterful storytelling. (Fantasy. 10 & up)
RECKLESS. Kirkus Reviews, 19487428, 8/1/2010, Vol. 78, Issue 15

I would include in an age-appropriate collection.  Sounds very interesting and I think boys might want to read it (more than other “fairy tale” books).
Gidwitz, A.  (2010). A Tale Dark & Grimm.  New York: Dutton Juvenile.

Multiple Grimm tales are retold (with original amount of gore intact) and connected through the experiences of Hansel and Gretel.


A Tale Dark and Grimm is a creative retelling of Hansel and Gretel, but as author Adam Gidwitz argues, in a more "awesome" way. Beginning before Hansel and Gretel are horn, the book weaves brother and sister in and out of other Grimm fairy tales. Hansel and Gretel endure dangerous adventures and gruesome battles with witches, beasts, dragons, and demons. They also face ancient curses, dark magic, and worst of all, their parents' betrayal. Gidwitz's cleverly crafted plot twists make this suspenseful book impossible to put down. However, the novel's most unique quality is the commentary Gidwitz interjects throughout, such as warning readers to send the babies out of the room when something awful and amazing is about to happen, or explaining to readers that, "Cutting off your finger, my young friends, is about the stupidest thing you could do. Don't do it!" After reading^ Tale Dark and Grimm the reader will not only "understand" it's appeal for young people, but "understand-stand," why this is a favorite of readers of all ages. (TS)
Journal of Children's Literature; Fall 2011, Vol. 37 Issue 2, p48-48, 1p

Although, this is a fun book, it may not be appropriate for all school libraries as it include some pretty graphic gore.  Most of the book is written at a level that would be appropriate (and of interest) for middle school, but the gore makes me more inclined to recommend for high school.
Hale, S., Hale, D., and Hale, N.  (2008).  Rapunzel’s Revenge. New York:  
           Bloomsbury USA Childrens.

A young woman discovers that her protected life with her mother is not what she thought the day she climbs the garden wall.

ALA Notable Children's Book

Rapunzel is a wild and fearless child who roams her mother’s castle (Mother Gothel’s western villa) at will but knows nothing about the outside world. As she enters adolescence, however, her curiosity overwhelms her, and she climbs the castle walls to discover a world of poverty and oppression, the result of her mother’s cruel magical powers over the world known as Gothel’s Ranch. Rapunzel also discovers that she was stolen as a child and has lived a life of luxury, while her real mother toiled in slavery in the Devil’s Armpit Mines. Rapunzel reacts in rage to this horrible injustice and soon finds herself imprisoned in the hollow of a tall tree, where she will remain until she swears allegiance to her adoptive mother and accepts her position as heir to the evil empire. The years go by, and Rapunzel’s hair grows and grows. Rapunzel is a strong-willed teenager, however, and on her 16th birthday, after refusing Mother Gothel’s conditions one last time, Rapunzel escapes, using her long tresses as an appelling rope. From this point on, the story takes a 180-degree turn from the version told by the Brothers Grimm; Rapunzel takes charge of her own life and isn’t easily bested by any manipulative men, witches,
or other evildoers. In her first exploit, she meets a princely “adventuring hero” on his way to “pretend” to rescue her, because “she’s bound to be too naïve to know the difference, and it’ll be such fun in the meantime” (pp. 40–41). Now, wise to the ways of the world, Rapunzel plays a practical joke on him that sends
him off on a wild goose chase into the forest, and from that point on, she is the mistress of her own destiny.
Shannon Hale has made a career of taking classic stories and turning them into enjoyable, feature-length masterpieces, and with the help of her husband Dean and their new friend and illustrator, Nate Hale, she takes Rapunzel to delightful places, more reminiscent of the Old West and Middle Earth than the Brothers Grimm’s archetypal forest. Along the way, Rapunzel encounters characters from other stories, including Jack, that famous giant killer, whose traveling companion, Goldie, resembles a large Canada goose and is alleged to lay golden eggs. All the usual suspects from the classic Western movies are here, too (albeit in parody), including Heck Burnbottom’s outlaw gang, the besieged town folks of P ig Tree Gulch, and a corrupt small town sheriff. Zorro had his whip, and Roy Rogers had his lasso, but Rapunzel has both, in the form of her long braided hair, which she uses with great aplomb to bring miscreants of all kinds to justice. She is more than a match for outlaw gangs, her mother’s henchman, wild boars, enchanted coyotes, and attempts to cash in on her “Wanted: Dead
or Alive” status. Nate Hale’s artwork is the perfect venue for this graphic novel. He captures body gesture, facial expression, and physical action ingeniously, all while maintaining a Southwestern, Old West feel through the landscapes and character appearances. One wonders how many John Ford Western movies he reviewed to
get the genre down pat. The good news is that the three Hales came out with the next installment in the Rapunzel series in January 2010 with Calamity Jack, the back story to how Jack the Giant Killer came to meet Rapunzel in book one.
Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy; March 2010, Vol. 53 Issue 6, p517-520, 2p
I would include in a collection.  The book sounds fun and exciting for boys and girls.  I like the idea of Rapunzel being the one who is the driving force of the action (vs. waiting to be rescued).

Pearce, Jackson. (2010).  Sisters Red.  New York: Little, Brown Books for Young

Two sisters, one with a hooded cloak and a fierce desire to slash up werewolves, work to protect the young girls of the town from evil forces.  One falls in love with the only friend of the other, a handsome young woodsman.

Awards: None yet!

In this gripping reading, teenage sisters Scarlett and Rosie March step in for Little Red Riding Hood, and the "Fenris" (werewolves) play the part of the Big Bad Wolf. Producer Michele McGonigle says that, when casting the sisters, "Erin's edge juxtaposed with Rosie's [Michal's] sweetness offered the contrast I wanted." McGonigle, who has worked with Suzanne Toren for many years, says, "I knew she would be the perfect one to play our german grandma." Toren, who knows some German, adds, "The trick is to let the story unfold without jarring the listener's ear with so much 'foreign-ness' that they lose the thread of the plot. So choosing just one or two elements of the foreign language like pronouncing the 'r' in the back of the throat, or pronouncing the 'z' sound in English as an 's,' or saying 'v' instead of 'w'--rather than all of them, allows for the 'flavor' yet is still comprehensible." (Ages 14 & up)
Kirkus Reviews; 10/15/2010, Vol. 78 Issue 20, p14-14, 1/4p

This seems to be marketed to a high school crowd and sounds appropriate as part of a high school collection.Show More

1 comment:

  1. UPDATE: We are currently watching last season's Grimm on Blu-ray. Loving it!!! But, we are also sad each time we realize that after a few more episodes, we will be going through Grimm withdrawal again until NEXT fall when the current season comes out!!! I've gotta find something "Grimmy" to read! :)