Tuesday, February 24, 2015


My thoughts....3.5 stars

Franz Xaver Von Schonwerth was a contemporary of the Brothers Grimm and they spoke highly of his efforts to save the folk stories of the Bavarian people. In 2010 a large lost collection was discovered. This is the first English translation of those long misplaced tales.

THE TURNIP PRINCESS and Other Newly Discovered Fairy Tales are nothing like the stories of The Brothers Grimm, Charles Perrault, or Hans Christian Anderson. These are the authentic stories just as they were told to Van Schonwerth. Unlike the aforementioned chroniclers there’s been no polishing, fleshing out, or gentling of these tales.

Readers can imagine themselves sitting round a fire or hearth with stories being told by everyone, from the youngest to the oldest. Some are disjointed, leaping in time and place with little or no logic, as a child might relate. Others are more cohesive and longer but not by much, the longest being only a few pages. These short tales were written and translated directly from the oral tellings. Princes, princesses, enchanted animals, dwarfs, giants, witches, and other requisite fairy tale creatures are all accounted for. These tales lack the polish and panache today’s popular fairy tales possess, but readers will have no problem recognizing many modern fairly tales in their most rudimentary forms in THE TURNIP PRINCESS and Other Newly Discovered Fairy Tales. I won’t name any names; it’s more fun to figure them out for on your own.

For readers who have always wondered what fairytales were like before being adapted or sanitized this is the book you’ve been waiting for.

No comments:

Post a Comment