Top Ten Tuesday: Fairytale Retellings

top ten tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a hugely popular weekly meme hosted by the lovely people of The Broke and the Bookish. Go check out the crazy number of other bloggers joining in the fun! :) I sometimes participate in this wonderful list-making (you know me, I can hardly resist making new lists!) and this week’s topic (FAIRYTALE RETELLINGS) is especially cool since I’m participating in the Fairytale Retelling Challenge!

I’ve written about my love of fairytales before so I’m not going to repeat myself except to add that I’m still amazed by all the great retellings I’ve read and seen around the blogosphere. I decided to split my list into two fives – the first for the retellings I’ve read and would recommend to anyone, not just fairytale lovers; and the second for the retellings I want to get to soon (both as part of my challenge and for myself).


My Top Five Fairytale Retellings:

  1. uprooted-naomi-novikUprooted by Naomi Novik. This is a recent title (I reviewed it here) and definitely my favourite from this week’s list. It’s a very loose retelling of Beauty and the Beast intertwined with some cool Polish folklore but it’s a great fantasy novel in its own right.
  2. Scarlet by A. C. Gaughen. This is more of a legend than fairytale – the story of Robin Hood and his Merry Men (or women!). I reviewed it here if you want a closer look!
  3. Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge. Nyx was a really nice change from the swooning heroines of Disney films, so I liked her a lot, naturally! :)
  4. The Accident Season by Moïra Fowley-Doyle. I can’t seem to stop recommending this book. It’s not a fairytale retelling per se but it’s full of folklore and mystery and has this old vibe going on (my review here).
  5. The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab. Again, it’s not a retelling but definitely a fairytale! It’s the first book I ever read by Schwab and the reason I fell in love with her writing.

Honorable mention goes to Laini Taylor’s novella collection, Lips Touch, which features three really gorgeously written fairytales or fairytale-inspired stories.


The Top Five Fairytale Retellings I Want to Read Soon:

  1. thorn-intisar-khananiDaughter of the Forest (and other retellings) by Juliet Marillier. By all accounts it’s a wonderful story, albeit a tough one. Marillier has re-written a number of fairytales, apparently, which makes my reluctance to start her books completely irrational.
  2. Thorn by Intisar Khanani. I already have a copy of this one and I need to get around to reading it soon! It was recommended by Becky.
  3. Crimson Bound by Rosamund Hodge. It’s not a sequel to Cruel Beauty as such but it seems to have a similar vibe.
  4. Beauty by Robin McKinley. Her books are fantasy classics and I want to read them soon!
  5. Wicked Lovely by Marissa Marr. I came across this one a while ago on some other lists and it looks really interesting! Several bloggers I like appear to have enjoyed it, too.

See also: these two posts (1 and 2) by Read at Midnight for more inspiration!


What are your favourite fairytale retellings? Which ones do you want to read next?

Do you prefer the retelling to stick to the story or veer off into the unknown?

I’d love to hear from you! :)

  • Great TTT! I also have Daughter of the Forest and Crimson Bound on my to-read list this week. I have Scarlet to read too – sounds like you loved it! YAY! :)

    • Thanks! :) Scarlet was a great read, I still have to read Lady Thief and Lion Heart, though! (I’m waiting for paperbacks…)

      • Ah good plan. I’ve seen it on lots of TTTs this week, which has just made me want to read it even more! :D

  • I love stories about Robin Hood, how come I didn’t know about Scarlet ? It sounds like Mulan in England, I’m all for it, and you wrote a lovely review so I’m even more curious.

    • Ahh Scarlet is awesome. I still have to get Lady Thief and Lion Heart and by all accounts they’re both great. Do you have any other Robin Hood retellings to recommend? I love a good thief story :)

      • I can’t think of any books about Robin Hood … only the BBC series with Richard Armitage, and a French musical :/ The world needs more Robin Hood

        • “ONLY the BBC series with Richard Armitage” –> how did I not know about this (I can only remember Mel Brooks’ Men in Tights) :D Ok and the Disney cartoon with foxes… I need to check out the Armitage thing, though.

          • haha you should ! I do remember liking it, but whether it was because of the show itself or because of Harry Lloyd (he plays Will Scarlet), I wouldn’t know.

  • Greg Hill

    I’m interested in Scarlet since I love the Robin Hood legends and this looks like a neat take on it. I guess all three are out so maybe i should pick these up…

    • Yep, Lion Heart (the last one) was released this spring, I think. I haven’t read the sequels yet but I saw the reviews and they were really favourable.
      Do you have any other Robin Hood retellings to reccomend? Or any other thief stories? :) I love unsavory characters that actually have hearts of gold!

  • I expect to see Uprooted on many lists this week!

    And do check out Daughter of the Forest, it’s awesome. It’s probably my personal favorite.


    • I’m ordering Daughter tonight, I caved under peer pressure ;) Danya of Fine Print has also been championing it and I trust you both. I’m a bit afraid of going in with too-high expectations but we’ll see!

  • I have discovered a couple of books I’ve not heard of (Daughter of the Forest & Beauty) so will definitely be investigating those. And seriously, you are just pushing The Accident Season left right and centre aren’t you? I totally didn’t even think about Lips Touch, either, that could definitely be an almost retelling, it has folklore and fairytale elements for sure.

    • Sorry, can’t help it. Ahh, don’t read it then. It’s rubbish. Complete waste of time. :)
      Yeah I have three almost-retellings today and I feel like I’m almost-cheating but hey, there’s no TTT police so I’m safe! ;)

  • I’m a huge fairytale retelling fan too, but I haven’t read a lot of these. I did love Beauty though. It had a slow start, but then it got soo good.

    • SO MANY PEOPLE RECOMMENDING SO MANY GREAT BOOKS! I’m ordering a batch from Book Depository tonight and I have no idea which ones I should pick, obviously I can’t order them all :(
      But yeah, McKinley sounds like my kind of thing, her novels are classics in the fantasy world so I really should read them if I want to count myself as a fantasy “expert” :)

  • This is such a great list (and by great I mean very similar to my own taste). I haven’t had the pleasure of reading Scarlet yet, but I do want to and Juliet Marillier is amazing (Sevenwaters is more of an adult fantasy series, but Wildwood Dancing + the companion novel is more YA). Thorn looks amazing and I cannot wait for The Accidental Season, glad to hear you loved it.

    • Yeah, I’ve been raving about The Accident Season for a while now (I think it got published a bit earlier in the UK but the US pub date is drawing close, too?) and I’m still thinking about it, which is just about the highest praise I can think of with so many books around.
      I’m ordering my first Marillier novel tonight, Daughter of the Forest, which comes highly recommended by several bloggers I trust! :)
      And welcome to Of Dragons and Hearts! :)

  • I love Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen!

    I also love Enchanted by Alethea Kontis who does a brilliant mas up of Cinderella and The Frog Prince with allusions to about a dozen other fairy tales.

    • Ooh, thanks for new reccomendations! :) I like books that are inspired by several fairytales at once, it’s nice to keep guessing what the author will pull from them (Uprooted is written in a similar way).

  • Maraia

    If Daughter of the Forest hadn’t been at the top of your to-read list, I would have boycotted your blog. ;)

    I’m starting to realize that I’m picky about my retellings. I read more when I was younger, but now I have less patience for them. (Uprooted, The Lunar Chronicles, and The Wrath and the Dawn being recent exceptions.)

    • YOU’RE A BULLY! (I totally just ordered Daughter of the Forest so I’m one step closer to reading it) :D

      I tried reading The Lunar Chronicles but didn’t click, I don’t know why not. It just wasn’t my thing… But I’ve heard wonderful things about The Wrath and the Dawn.

      • Maraia

        Only because I know you’ll love it. I MEAN HATE IT. It’s the worst book ever, so don’t expect to enjoy it at all. There, that’s better. Which cover did you order?

        I’m not in love with TLC like everyone else seems to be (they were all 4-star reads), but I enjoyed them well enough. I resisted reading them for a long time, though, because I wasn’t thrilled with the premise. I can see why it might not work for you.

        • Umm the cheapest one? :/ The one with a lady and swirly letters, I think. (Yeah I usually go for the cheapest version, I just want to buy more books, I can’t help it….)

          TLC — isn’t that Tender Loving Care? :)

          • Maraia

            I’m not sure which one you mean, haha. You’ll have to post a picture when it shows up. :D Do you usually have to order the UK editions?

            Haha, yes, tender loving care is *so* overrated. ;)

          • Ahh no, I just order the UK editions of paperbacks if a) they’re prettier; b) they’re cheaper; c) if they appear faster than the US paperbacks! :)

  • First, I have to tell you that I ADORE your design. Like, I am seriously in love! It’s too adorable! Also, I totally agree with you about The Accident Season! It did seem folksy to me too! And I cannot WAIT to read Uprooted- I have heard nothing but amazing things about it, and I just want, nay NEED it in my life! Fabulous list!!

    • Thanks, Shannon! :) My brother made the art (using potato printing, haha) for my birthday and my husband did the coding magic.
      The Accident Season was SO GOOD. It’s definitely one of my top 10 for 2015, maybe top 5.
      Yeah, Uprooted was just… it’s *so different*, you know? It’s this great mash-up of folklore, straight-up fantasy and really slow-burn romance. <3

  • I need to read Uprooted soon. I predict it is going to be on absolutely everybody’s faves of the year lists it is getting so much love. And I adore a slow burn romance! Why haven’t I read this yet!!
    The Accident Season also sounds pretty awesome – I’ll toddle over and check out your review! Thanks for highlighting it!
    I second the recs to read Daughter of the Forest and any of Robin McKinley’s retellings!

    • Daughter of the Forest should currently be en route to my home because I’ve finally caved and ordered it.

      Well, I hope you’ll enjoy Uprooted – and that all the hype doesn’t completely kill your enjoyment of it! It really is a very good book, I’m so glad I read it. And yes, Uprooted and The Accident Season are still topping my 2015 list (along with A Darker Shade of Magic – lots of great books by female writers!).