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A Tale Dark & Grimm (A Tale Dark & Grimm #1)

3.99 of 5 stars 3.99  ·  rating details  ·  12,444 ratings  ·  2,252 reviews
In this mischievous and utterly original debut, Hansel and Gretel walk out of their own story and into eight other classic Grimm-inspired tales. As readers follow the siblings through a forest brimming with menacing foes, they learn the true story behind (and beyond) the bread crumbs, edible houses, and outwitted witches.

Fairy tales have never been more irreverent or subv

Hardcover, 256 pages
Published October 28th 2010 by Dutton Books for Young Readers (first published October 1st 2010)
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Ray-ray This book is not for people with weak tolerance for death, blood, and overall gore. The ending is fairly happy, but VERY bloody things happen on the…moreThis book is not for people with weak tolerance for death, blood, and overall gore. The ending is fairly happy, but VERY bloody things happen on the way. The book is very good, though. There are 'warnings' about when blood is coming. (less)
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Newbery 2011
12th out of 147 books — 503 voters
A Tale Dark & Grimm by Adam GidwitzThe Book of Lost Things by John ConnollyMy Name Is Rapunzel by K.C. HiltonHappily Ever After by Edward H. CarpenterRed Riding Hood by Sarah Blakley-Cartwright
Dark Fairy Tales
1st out of 51 books — 90 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja)
I loved, loved, loved this book! This is the kind of book that I wish I could find more of. I think it was a wonderful fix of humor, horror, suspense, angst, and a great coming of age story. I didn't think that I would appreciate a story with Hansel and Gretel thrown into other fairy tales, nor could their story sustain a full-length novel. I was wrong on both counts. Hansel and Gretel became very dear to my hearts. They started out as little children who were doing what little children did. Liv ...more
Didn’t want to read this. Nope. Not a jot. Three reasons for that. First off, the title. I’ve said it about twenty times since reading it and every time I can’t quite get it right (derivations have included "Something Dark and Grimm", “A Grimm Tale”, and “Something Grimm”). Second, the jacket of the hardcover edition of this book isn’t particularly new. Silhouettes against a blue background. Ho hum. Third, I couldn’t believe that I was dealing with yet ANOTHER middle grade novel adapting fairy t ...more
Rick Riordan
This debut YA novel is getting a lot of well-deserved attention. Gidwitz manages to balance the grisly violence of the original Grimms’ fairy tales with a wonderful sense of humor and narrative voice, somewhat reminiscent of Lemony Snicket’s take on the penny dreadful, but also completely fresh and unique. Gidwitz weaves the fairy tales together into a single narrative featuring Hansel and Gretel, and does it so well you’ll be wondering if this was the way the stories were meant to be told back ...more
I studied fairy tales a bit in college -- one of my favorite subjects, in fact -- so the premise of this book intrigued me. Imagine if all those children in Grimm stories, the ones who pop up when a poor couple bemoans that they have no children, or who get entrapped by a creepy devil man, or who get killed by their parents, are actually the same two children. They're Hansel and Gretel. And each story, generally culled from the Grimms' work, takes them on a journey of self-discovery and independ ...more
3.7 Stars

I don't know about you, but Hansel and Gretel was always one of my least favorite fairy tales. They were always so naive, and it felt like they made it out the other side based on chance, and not any particular skill or growth they'd experienced. Here, not so. Here, Adam Gidwitz has imagined a tale that's much longer than the one we know, much more involved, and is actually several shorter tales woven together to tell the whole tale - dark and grimm.

You see, Hansel and Gretel don't jus
I've always liked an analogy for reading I once heard from an English teacher: sometimes your relationship with a book can be just like relationships with people. There are people you'll be instantly drawn to because they have a particular charisma or chemistry for you, yet with time you might realize they lack the depth and quality to be a good relationship. And there are people who don't immediately impress you or draw you in, but the more time you spend getting to know them the more they grow ...more
Mar 26, 2011 Dolly rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
It took us a long time to read this book. Since we hadn't finished by the time it was due back at the library, we had to return it before we finished as there were holds on it. So we put it on hold again ourselves and promised to finish it as soon as we could.

It was a great book, filled with fantastic and action-filled stories that were gruesome, but exciting. I have read some about children's ability to detach the written story from reality and be relatively unaffected by gore (more so than wi
I wanted to like this book – honestly, I did! The premise is intriguing, and I love fairy tales. Plus it garnered so many glowing reviews that I kept cutting it a bit more slack than I otherwise would have done.

But I found the book to be both dull and irritating. What truly turned me off to this book was the thinness of the plot and the intrusiveness of the narrator. As others have noted, Lemony Snicket this is not -- not even Book 13 Lemony Snicket!

I loved the original tales, so the violence wa
Mike (the Paladin)
This is an odd book...short with a "young" cover painting the book is played for somewhat adult humor played against the back drop of the "original" morality tales (bloody morality tales) told in the Grim Grimm's Fairy Tales. You know the ones where the step sisters try cutting off their toes and then their heels to make them fit in the glass slipper?

Here we're told a story of Hansel and Gretel...but not the one you're familiar with. No with repeated warnings to be sure there are no children in
Not the worst thing I've ever read, but it was pretty close. I was able to slog my way to the end though.
I really disliked this book! It's a weaving together of a number of the darker and more obscure Grimm tales using Hansel and Gretel as characters throughout--stringing them together as a single episodic narrative. There are plenty of gruesome touches, bizzare adventures, and magical elements but the ending is unsatisfying and, unlike the Grimm stories, there's no lesson or caution to the stories; the central theme in fact is that grown-ups can't be trusted. There are lots of attempts at humor as ...more
Roxanne Hsu Feldman
I really really enjoyed the journey into and out of the dark dark woods that is this book by a new comer of the Children's books scene. To be honest, because I love and respect traditional fairy tales (mostly Grimms, Jacobs, with some Norse, Arabian Nights, and Russian tales thrown in) to such a degree, I get very suspicious and highly critical when it comes to authors playing with and retelling these tales.

I especially resent the ones that make light of these grim and dark and powerful tales an
❄️ Propertea Of Frostea ❄️
Three words: I LOVED IT.

Will write a review later today...XD
A MEOWZER review :D

Never liked the original Grimms' tales, but this one was a blast! XD


Now, my bro shall rub a fact in my face: I LOVE tales that have royal kids, Narnia and THIS is proof :P All hail The Pevensies and Whatever-Hansel-and-gretel's names are XD
Okay so I will do to all of you what the author did to the readers COUNTLESS times:

The End.

Yeah, I found that pretty annoying. That and how unrealistic it was. I still got to the end though.
Sometimes you come across a book that makes you smack your forehead and go "Why didn't I think of this idea?!". Suffice it to say, for me, this is one such book. Now, everybody here has read the Grimm Fairy Tales, yes? Snow-white, Cinderella, Hansel and Gretel, etc? Ring any bells? While we read the watered-down, sugar-coated versions back in the days, the original Grimm tales were violent, bloody and down-right inappropriate for little kids.

Adam Gidwitz had the brilliant idea to spin a dark tal
Jul 17, 2010 Heather rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: reluctant young readers, or anyone looking for a good fun read.
Recommended to Heather by: my boss and her nine-year-old daughter
I read the advance reading copy of this book, and absolutely LOVED IT! I want to recommend it to anyone that works with young students, particularly those that are reluctant readers. I agree with my boss, who when she handed it to me, said "Can't you just see all the fifth grade boys drooling over this book?" It is wonderfully bloody and fun--but there is also a level of complexity that the author loves to point out in his to-the-side narration, but never explicitly state, such as: "Why? I've al ...more
Liesl Shurtliff
This is a very fractured and expanded version of Hansel and Gretel. I've read a lot of middle-grade, and sometimes while I personally enjoy it, I often find it difficult to believe that it will hold the attention of the intended audience. But A TALE DARK AND GRIMM not only delighted me, after I finished I instantly thought "I have to read this to the kids!" It really makes a fun read-aloud.

The style is a bit similar to Lemony Snicket's A SERIES OF UNFORTUNATE EVENT in which the narrator interru
I read the first chapter of this book aloud to my 5th grade enrichment class today. I hit the part of Hansel and Gretel getting their heads chopped off and there were open mouths of shock and then cheers. Then I informed them that this was a book talk and it wasn't available for check out until: one, I finish reading it. And two, I read it aloud to my own homeroom. Boos, all around. A line of children asking to be the first to get it when available. A clamoring for any books with "the real Grimm ...more
I gave this book four stars because it was cool it was the most bloody grusome horrid horrific scary disgusting fairytale that I have read in my entire life. also it was interesting how two children could go through so much in their life. I felt bad for hansel and gretel because all of those periliss journeys made them realize they had every single little thing they could ever want right were the started is the best place. I think you wold like this book if you like fairytale, mystery, or horror ...more
A Tale Dark and Grimm is an outstanding book about a girl named Gretel and a boy named Hansel. The story starts out with the tale of their parents and makes it's way to the children. Quickly, the children discover how horrifying adults really are. And they just keep getting worse. Hansel and Gretel hurriedly hatch a plan. The plan takes a horrible turn and things don't exactly go so well. Soon, they find themselves in grave danger that may end up with a ending dark and grim.

I found this book to
Jan 22, 2015 NHP added it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
colleen the contrarian  ± (... never stop fighting) ±

Kind of a charming story, though suitably dark and grim to match the title. Might be a bit gruesome in parts for younger young'uns - but no worries, as the author gives you ample and repeated warning when anything dark and/or grimm is about to happen.

Which was sort of my biggest issue with the story. There are a lot of times when the author interrupts - either to give said warning, or to spell out the moral lesson, or just to make a snarky comment. On one hand, these were sometimes poignant o
An amalgamation of Grimm tales, using Hansel and Gretel as the protagonist for nearly all. The brother and sister, here the children of a king and queen, run away from home after discovering their parents have committed a crime against them (though they don’t know the whole story). They arrive at the well-known candy house of the child-eating witch, but when that story ends, their adventures continue, in adaptations of “Brother And Sister” (in which the brother turns into a beast of the forest), ...more
Plenty of gore and suspense-filled moments to capture the most reluctant of young readers and keep him or her riveted. Be careful though, as the snarky narrator will remind you throughout, these “grim” tales are not for the faint of heart or more sensitive children, so approach with caution when recommending this one to those under 10. Unfortunately, I did find that the interlocking stories began to lose their edge and momentum towards the middle and again towards the end.

I am always on the loo
What if the fairy tales we all grew up with were real? It's a familiar question thanks to the recent popularity of television shows such as Grimm and Once Upon a Time which that take the tales many of us loved as children and grounds them in the present-day reality. The original Brothers Grimm tales were more often than not dark, scary, bloody, and violent -- stories that by today's standards are often deemed unacceptable for children. With his twisty, imaginative debut Gidwitz seeks to reclaim ...more
Greta is Erikasbuddy



Sound familiar?

This is how I was introduced to Hansel and Gretel with Bugs Bunny meeting Witch Hazel in a gingerbread house tempting two fat German kids to come inside.

(if you have never seen it.... then you must be Amish. <---- there ya go)

After watching this I finally understood why everyone called my brother Hansel. (what? U seriously think I have never heard that one before? LOLZ! I'm 32 years old and still hear it:P )

Melissa Kasso
Is it possible to rate a book one star and a five star? I'm torn between the two. I was drawn to this book because of the fantastic reviews. Immediately upon reading the beginning I loved the narrator's snarky, sarcastic voice. I could see so many fourth and fifth grade boys loving this book. Unfortunately, the bloody violence was more than a bit too much for me. I think I would be crucified if I put this book in my classroom library. For example, one passage reads...

"Then, my dear, you have bef
The Flooze
The author of A Tale Dark & Grimm sets out to tell the true, gruesome stories of the Brothers Grimm by linking them through two central characters: Hansel and Gretel.

I must admit, these two kids have never been my favorites. They always struck me as too foolish, too gullible, and almost deserving of the horrid fate the witch desired for them. Mean of me, I know, but seeing these children through Adam Gidwitz’s eyes changes my opinion. Gidwitz gives them purpose, and motivation, and a sense
Reading Teen (Andye)
Insanely funny, awesomely written, incredibly entertaining. I read it in less then a day. It's rare that I read a book that isn't terribly short and finish it that quickly. Which means that it was one of the best books that I've read in a while.

Now, this wasn't the cleanest book in the world, violence wise. This violence includes a cannibal baker who tries to eat Hansel and Gretel, a father who chops the heads from Hansel and Gretel and the Devil who tries to torture Hansel and Gretel for all of
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books 1 5 Jan 29, 2015 09:54AM  
This book is stinkin gruesome!!! 2 10 Jan 27, 2015 01:35PM  
Top 5 Books you'd recommend if you've loved reading this series 3 15 Oct 02, 2014 05:46PM  
Can anyone recommend a book similar to this? 13 75 Aug 09, 2014 10:05PM  
Did anyone else hate this book???? 6 45 Aug 09, 2014 05:22PM  
Fiction Fanatics: March 2014 - A Tale Dark and Grimm 12 29 Apr 08, 2014 02:13PM  
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To read my bio and learn more about me, and find a FAQ, visit:
More about Adam Gidwitz...

Other Books in the Series

A Tale Dark & Grimm (3 books)
  • In a Glass Grimmly (A Tale Dark & Grimm, #2)
  • The Grimm Conclusion (A Tale Dark & Grimm, #3)
In a Glass Grimmly (A Tale Dark & Grimm, #2) The Grimm Conclusion (A Tale Dark & Grimm, #3) The Empire Strikes Back: So You Want to Be a Jedi? (Star Wars: Episode V) Who Done It? Guys Read: Terrifying Tales (Guys Read Library of Great Reading, #5)

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“You see, to find the brightest wisdom one must pass through the darkest zones. And through the darkest zones there can be no guide.
No guide, that is, but courage”
“Once upon a time, fairy tales were AWESOME!” 61 likes
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