Beauty and the Beast by Marianna Mayer

Beauty and the Beast by Marianna Mayer, illustrations by Mercer Mayer I've saved the best for last. This is the book made me fall in love with fairy tales. Mayer uses richly detailed paintings to illustrate this classic story of Beauty and the Beast, setting it somewhere in the medieval era. Mayer depicts the Beast's [...]


Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge (Cruel Beauty Universe)

Graceling meets Beauty and the Beast in this sweeping fantasy about one girl's journey to fulfill her destiny and the monster who gets in her way-by stealing her heart. Based on the classic fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, Cruel Beauty is a dazzling love story about our deepest desires and their power to change [...]

King Midas and the Golden Touch by Charlotte Craft

King Midas and the Golden Touch, as told by Charlotte Craft, illustrated by K.Y. Craft (Morrow Junior Books) I've always liked the story of King Midas which began as a Greek myth about a king who in his quest for gold, stands to lose everything he truly loves. What really stands out for me about [...]

The Twelve Dancing Princesses by Ruth Sanderson

Set in the 15th c., costumes and knowledge about period dancing provided by Nan Hurlburt. One major change that I liked about this version is the disappearance of each of the princes who tries to discover where the 12 girls are going to.  In some other stories I've read, the punishment for failure is death. [...]

Entwined by Heather Dixon

Come and mend your broken hearts here. Just when Azalea should feel that everything is before her — beautiful gowns, dashing suitors, balls filled with dancing — it's taken away. All of it. And Azalea is trapped. The Keeper understands. He's trapped, too, held for centuries within the walls of the palace. So he extends [...]

The Princess Curse by Merrie Haskell

"Merrie Haskell’s middle-grade fantasy novel Princess Curse is an imaginative retelling of the fairy tales The Twelve Dancing Princesses and Beauty and the Beast. In the fifteenth-century kingdom of Sylvania, the prince offers a fabulous reward to anyone who cures the curse that forces the princesses to spend each night dancing to the point of [...]

Two Versions of Sleeping Beauty!

Sleeping Beauty, retold by Mahlon F. Craft, illustrated by Kinuko Y. Craft (SeaStar Books) This is a gorgeous illustrated version of Sleeping Beauty.  One of the unique features about this version are the illustrated letters beginning the text on each page.  I also love how the fairies are depicted. The good fairies are ethereal beings, non-corporeal, with [...]

Rumpelstiltskin by Paul O. Zelinsky

This version of Rumpelstiltskin is my favorite. I remember it being featured on Reading Rainbow back in the day and the copy I borrowed from the library had the coveted silver "Caldecott Honor Book" sticker on the cover. It's set in the late medieval period and I love how Rumpel is illustrated, from his strange [...]

Rapunzel by Paul O. Zelinsky

This is another Caldecott Book winner (gold sticker) by Zelinsky that takes German and French folktales of Rapunzel and Petrosinella (respectively) and sets it in a world full of Italian influences.  Rapunzel is born to a family who are living somewhere in Italy -- you can tell from the outdoor gardens, Greek sculptures and the [...]

The Goose Girl, Retold by Eric A. Kimmel

This is a beautiful fairy tale that is a bit darker than most and has a more complicated plot compared to some of the Brothers Grimm tales. This story has been retold by Shannon Hale as "The Goose Girl" in the "Books of Bayern" series which I strongly recommend you read. What is remarkable about [...]