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The Outspoken Princess and the Gentle Knight: A Treasury of Modern Fairy Tales
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The Outspoken Princess and the Gentle Knight: A Treasury of Modern Fairy Tales

3.93  ·  Rating Details  ·  114 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
Always provocative, frequently hilarious, and at times deeply poignant, these enchanting fairy tales--selected by children's literature expert Jack Zipes--are as marvelous to read aloud with a child as they are to enjoy in solitude. Magnificent, original full-page and spot illustrations by Stephane Poulin enhance the text.
Paperback, 237 pages
Published January 1st 1996 by Bantam USA (first published November 1st 1994)
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A rather interesting collection, in particular because Zipes is not hesitant to include stories that are not traditionally happy ever after. He gets bonus points for including a Hemingway short story that is rather commenting on many things (though I think it is interesting that Hemingway wrote about a faithful bull).

There are several stand out stories. The collection starts strong with Catherine Storr's retelling of Red Riding Hood, a story that makes fun not only of stereotypes but also narrat
A fun modern collection of fairy tales from some of the big names of fantasy fiction. These tales all challenge some of (but not all) the common underlying themes of the stories that many of us grow up with without losing the flavor of enchantment that makes fairy tales stick with us. I picked up this collection after reading the excellent Uprooted; I was looking for the story The Enchanter's Daughter because Novik mentioned it in her afterward and I was unfamiliar with the tale but was quickly ...more
Jul 06, 2011 Jen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a cute little collection, and one that really makes me wonder what would happen if someone made another, more modern anthology like it. The stories in this edition range from the 1950s to the early 90s, which is smack on the top of the crest of the feminist movement--and it shows. I'm all for feminism in stories, but the thing that I found kind of annoying about these stories was that, in trying to ditch the helpless princess role, they just created other walls. Great, princesses are now ...more
Jun 12, 2016 Brian rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another one that caught my attention coming across the returns desk at the library. It was a great little read, nothing serious to say; I finished it in approximately a day or two of passive reading, as I recall. Fun stories, quick read, what more could you want?
Nov 02, 2009 Kate rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I just adored the illustrations in this book! I'm thinking of keeping it for the illustrations alone. The fairy tales were just average.
Lloyd Alexander's love of cats is really wonderful tbh.
I want to start off by saying I did enjoy many of the stories in this book and think the idea of collecting up modern fairy tales is a great idea.
The problem I have is more with the introduction (and back cover) which goes on about the "dubious messages when it comes to the depiction of gender roles, violence and democracy" in classical fairy tales. It also mentions how many of these stories are outdated and no longer relatable. So I sort of expected that these would be stories with fresh per
Jan 24, 2013 Nafiza rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012, books-i-own
Let me tell you the story about how this book and I met.

It was a rainy day in September and I was frantically looking through books at the Vancouver Public Library sale. This novel caught my eye but I put it aside convinced that I had no room in my suitcase (yes, I took a suitcase) for this title but then my eye snagged on it and it seemed to regard me sadly. So finally I decided that back be damned, I must have this book. And 75 cents later, it was mine.

Of course, it languished on my shelf for
James Aschbacher
What a delightful book! Editor Jack Zipes has selected authors of high quality and they all deliver. The stories are classical in nature although their story lines are modern. With fairy tales by Tanith Lee, Jane Yolen, Catherine Storr and other fantasy pros this collection is a gem. And the illustrations by Stephane Poulin are enchanting too. Highly recommended.
Cecilia Rodriguez
Apr 13, 2015 Cecilia Rodriguez rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Take the time to read the introduction. Zips describes the history and evolution of printed story telling. He includes the effects of world history and Feminism in literature.
Three of my favorite authors contribute their short stories in the volume.
Tanith Lee and Jane Yolen are also featured in a series edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling.
Nov 09, 2013 Cat. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, children-ya
This is probably targeted at the "young adult" audience, but it's a fun read for adults too, particularly in adults who recognize subtext in traditional fairy tales. Going along with that theme, Zipes points out that "[a]ll of the major protagonists of the most exciting fairy tales of the 1970s were female. Whether the tale was written by a man or a woman...." Not, by any means, to say that all the women in these stories are paragons of wonderfulness.

The collection includes writings by everyone
Kanzeda Crenshaw
This treasury of modern fairy tales is everything I had hoped it would be. The stories draw upon all of the old stand by fairy tale plots, but put smart, independent and somewhat quirky heroines and heros in their midst.

If pressed to select my favorite of the tales, I would select "The Story of the Eldest Princess" by A.S. Byatt. The princess is all to familiar with the story she has been set into and takes matters into her own hands, changing her fate.

A Jack Zipes collection once again prompts
Jun 03, 2009 Ashley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed these stories a lot more than I thought I would. I was originally interested in this book because it is a compilation of short story fairy tale retellings. I love fairy tales, and thought it would be a great read. Then, I read the first story, and put the book back on my shelf for about a year. I picked it up again, and I really liked it! There were some retellings that I didn't really care for, but overall I really liked this book, and thought that most of the retellings were very wel ...more
Jun 28, 2015 Alicia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
fell between a 3 and 4, but certain stories like The Eldest Princess swayed me.
May 15, 2010 Susan rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fairy_tales
This collection showcases the danger when writers write to Make a Point rather than to Tell a Story. It's didactic, silly, and dull, with the exception of "The White Seal Maid" by Jane Yolen and "The Story of the Eldest Princess" by A.S. Byatt. Zipes thinks Coombs "invented" "Molly Mullett"; apparently he hasn't read enough traditional stories to recognize a humorless knock-off of Molly Whuppie.
Wendy Lu
Apr 17, 2011 Wendy Lu rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of my friends gave this to me for my birthday last august. It was his copy of a childhood favorite that he didn't much read anymore and so passed to me because he figured I'd like it. Needless to say, I did. Some of the stories were not exactly my cup of tea, but some were
Jun 27, 2011 LG rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: the young-at-heart
Inverted fairy tales are always amusing. Besides the two title stories, the standouts in this volume are “The Faithful Bull” by toreador fan Ernest Hemingway and “The White Seal Maid” by the fantasy writer Jane Yolen. The illustrations are pretty, too.
Oct 28, 2008 Sara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As much as I like fairy tales, I like modern ones better. What more can I say? This book rocks. I especially like Petronella.
Jun 15, 2012 Serina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
the book you were thinking about writing when reading all fairy tale stories.
Jan 21, 2013 Kathleen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thought provoking twists on familiar tales.
Sep 12, 2015 Kailey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-books
Love these! So fun!
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Jack David Zipes is a retired Professor of German at the University of Minnesota. He has published and lectured extensively on the subject of fairy tales, their linguistic roots, and argued that they have a "socialization function". According to Zipes, fairy tales "serve a meaningful social function, not just for compensation but for revelation: the worlds projected by the best of our fairy tales ...more
More about Jack D. Zipes...

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