applespice: it is a girl in an interesting hat ([the fall] evelyn)
Last week, I read The Book of Lost Things, by John Connelly, and it got me thinking about fairy tales. By the way, I highly recommend it if you are interested in things like fairy tales, mythology, the "hero's quest" style of storytelling, or even coming-of-age stories. I really enjoyed it!

One of the things that I enjoyed most about it was the dark and twisted retelling of some of those classic fairy tales. Of course, most of us know that in their original incarnations the stories were dark and twisted, and over the course of time were Disneyfied for easier digestion among a more sheltering parental set. As I grow older, I find that I much prefer the old stories (or the newer tales that return to that original grit and darkness). They're gory, unpleasant, and usually very sexual - explicitly or implicitly. They give me a funny little jolt in my stomach as I read them, and while I am horrified to read of monsters eating children or copulating with human women, I can't deny that they're fascinating.

Fairy tales and, on a grander scale, mythology, always seem to reach right into your gut and tug you in. Maybe it's the lineage of the stories; knowing that they have existed, in some form, for centuries, if not longer. They're printed on the insides of our skulls, somehow familiar and somehow alien, no matter the telling. Or maybe I'm just speaking for myself, and other people don't feel the same magnetic attraction to the old stories. Either way, I find them terribly compelling.

Anyone else enjoy a good dark and disturbing fairy tale? If so, are there any other books or stories you could recommend to me? I've read several works on the subject, but can't recall the titles of all of them immediately.

Anyway, let's just chat about the stories themselves. What do you think about them? Compelling or repelling? Interesting or boring?

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How About Them Apples?

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