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A Wolf at the Door: And Other Retold Fairy Tales
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A Wolf at the Door: And Other Retold Fairy Tales (Retold Fairy Tales for Younger Readers #1)

3.67 of 5 stars 3.67  ·  rating details  ·  1,011 ratings  ·  96 reviews
These are not your mother's fairy tales... Did you ever wonder how the dwarves felt after Snow White ditched them for the prince? Do you sometimes wish Cinderella hadn't been so helpless and petite?

Prepare to see fairy tales from a completely new angle!
Paperback, 166 pages
Published November 1st 2001 by Aladdin Paperbacks (first published January 1st 2000)
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Community Reviews

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Instructions for reading this review.

1. This is optional. Go find a copy of A Wolf at the Door.
2. Read "Cinder Elephant" by Jane Yolen. Still opitional.
3. This is not optional. Stand up and do a happy dance while chanting -Jane Yolen Rocks! Jane Yolen Rocks! or Jane Yolen is Golden.

The best story in this collection without a doubt is Yolen's "Cinder Elephant". It is wonderful; it is brillant; it has a wonderful moral. Honestly, it is now my absolute favorite version of Cinderella ever. It is wor

"Right On, Red" by Carly Monardo. Why don't more people write fairy tales like this?
2.5 stars. The average rating was 2.4-ish, so rounding down to 2

As an avid reader of YA and Children's lit, I know how horribly wrong a anthrology of children's short stories can go. Typically, some of the contributors will be adult literature authors, and they'll think, "Children's stories? Easy peasy! All I'll need is 1) A lesson kids need to learn 2) A kid protagonist 3) A plot with stuff that interests kids." However, they come to a complication in the plot and think, "Oh, ok. Luckily I've g
Cinderella is plus-sized, Jack's giant's wife tells the bigger side of the story, Hansel and Gretel stumble upon video game store, and Neil Gaiman provides instructions for surviving in a fairy tale: many of the selections from A Wolf at the Door are transparent fairy tale retellings with a single twist or a new setting, be it an ice age or aliens. They may catch the eye, but most of are empty and gimmicky with immature writing styles. There are some exceptions, and Gaiman's poem in particular i ...more
An Odd1
From nearly traditional to far from the inspiring base, 13 authors sprout new lives from old hearts. I will seek more, to set individual works on Favorite shelf, from 5* authors met here. I hope an illustrated version comes out, even if tiny, like Angela Barrett's chapter headers in Amy Schlitz's The Night Fairy. However text stimulates imagination enough to visualize ourselves.

1 The Months of Manhattan by Delia Sherman
5* Magical bad luck teaches old lesson in new way. Fun from NYC expert.
I was disappointed by this book, and didn't find the revamped fairy tales very enjoyable. The tales that followed closely their better known counterparts were acceptable, but brought nothing new to the table.

(view spoiler)
I liked about half of this collection of "retold fairy tales," and the half I did like I thought was not appropriate for the 8-12 year old age level the book claims to aim at. (The seven dwarfs attempt to kidnap and re-poison Snow White, the witch of Hansel and Gretel is transformed into an illicit human organs dealer, and Ali Baba's brother is presumably killed by aliens while the rest of his family simply revels in the gold Ali Baba managed to swipe.) Becoming Charise is an extremely touching ...more
Cupof Tea
The stories I liked the best usually had animals as main characters, like Falada: The Goose Girl's Horse, and A Wolf at the Door. Also the more urban fantasy take on smart little girls in The Months of Manhattan and Becoming Charise I liked for the characters. Swans, for the setting, with a castle full of quilts.

I was not a fan of the poem by Neil Gaiman really.

I admit I had to back and look through the book to figure out the ones I liked the best. None of the stories were that memorable. Overal
Well... ?.?? stars...

The Months of Manhattan by Delia Sherman * * * *
A sweet little story about a lucky painting and a pair of step-sisters.

Cinder Elephant by Jane Yolen * * *
A cute story about a round & clever Cinderella.

Instructions by Neil Gaiman * * *
A poem filled with solutions and tips for solving any fairytale adventure.

Mrs. Big: "Jack and the Beanstalk" Retold by Michael Cadnum * * *
Even as expected...

Falada: The Goose Girl's Horse by Nancy Farmer * * *
Not as bad an ending as Falada
This book was also chosen for my YA Materials course.

A Wolf at the Door and Other Retold Fairy Tales is a collection of short stories that I selected from Cynthia Leitich Smith's list of children's and YA short story and poetry collections. I chose Neil Gaiman's Instructions as my short story for the purposes of this module, however, I read a few of the other stories and they were all wonderful.

Q5, P3

Q5 - As a huge fan of Neil Gaiman, I absolutely loved this story. Through his series of Instruct
This slim volume of retold fairy tales is mostly quite good, with imaginative and moving entries from writers like Neil Gaiman, Patricia A. McKillip, Jane Yolen, and Nancy Farmer. What keeps it from being truly great is its short length (I read through the whole thing in a little more than an hour) and the other, more misguided entries in the collection. Some of the writers seemed to consider "retelling" a story to be nothing more than adding modern touches to it, such as Garth Nix's story, whic ...more
Wow, I just blasted through two books in a week, so expect a couple rapid fire posts over the next few days. I also just succumbed to another fever via child, so these posts may not make all that much sense. We shall see. In any case, I highly enjoyed reading A Wolf at the Door, even though it’s a retelling anthology. Retellings, as anyone who reads my reviews regularly will know, aren’t really my thing; I’m usually disappointed. However, through a combination of clever twists, witty writing and ...more
Rebecca Ann
This is an interesting collection of short, modernized, fractured fairy tales. Authors include some really well known people like[author:Garth Nix,Neil Gaiman,Jane Yolen, Tanith Lee and Gregory MaguirePatricia A McKillip. I found some of these excellent, and some of them disappointing (I'm talking to you Gaiman and Maguire). My favorites were Hansel's Eyes, A Wolf at the Door, The Kingdom of Melting Glances, and The Twelve Dancing Princesses. I really liked how each story had a little bio sectio ...more
Oct 15, 2012 Angela rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Angela by: k00kaburra's Fairy Tale bookbox
I love retold fairy tales -- Some of these stories I didn't know the original tales (one in particular is a Portuguese tale, and I loved the retelling..need to find an "original") I love that Kathe Koja wrote her story for all the ugly ducklings out there (and I don't think there is a 12-14 year old girl who hasn't felt like an ugly duckling) -- I think my favorite was Instructions by Neil Gaiman -- reminded me of poems I wrote as a child...the list poems.

The Months of Manhattan by Delia Sherma
An awesome retelling of the twelve dancing princesses was my favorite in this collection. Another shining story was a re-imagining of a chubby Cinderella. Some stories, such as the Hansel and Gretel spoof were a bit hard to follow and even as an adult had me thinking "ewww", as the candy house became a Playstation store, and the hungry witch became a black market organ dealer. In all, for young people who know the originals, this is a fun and creepy collectible. For me, it was "ok".

Twelve re-tel
*Queen Diva*
I checked out this book and Swan Sister from the library after reading Troll's Eye View. This book along with Swan Sisters are two books that came out before Troll's Eye View. But much like Troll's Eye View, this book had interesting retellings and really boring retellings.

My favorite, by far, is "Cinder Elephant" by Jane Yolen's poem story "The Seven Stage a Comeback", which is about the dwarves after Snow White leaves them and marries the prince and how they feel about her leaving them. It wa
Mogsy (MMOGC)
I admit, if this hadn't been a book club read, I probably wouldn't have picked it up on my own, and the reasons are threefold. First, even though I've been known to enjoy stories involving re-imagined fairy tales, it's not my preferred subject. Second, I'm not normally drawn to children's or middle grade books. And third, I'm generally not a big fan of anthologies or short story collections. One of the greatest joys of reading is being able to connect with the characters, and personally I find s ...more
Courtney Reads A Lot
A Wolf at the Door and Other Retold Fairy Tales is a collection of fairy-tales retold by such famous fantasy and science fiction writers as Neil Gaiman, Garth Nix, Gregory Maguire, and more. This book contains Gaiman's "Instructions" and 12 retellings of old favorites like Cinderella and The Twelve Dancing Princesses. I found these short retellings to either be a hit or miss. There were some I enjoyed, while others were just strange and poorly executed. There were many dark twisted tales, and I' ...more
The Months of Manhattan, by Delia Sherman; Cinder elephant by Jane Yolen; Instructions by Neil Gaiman; Mrs. Big by Michael Cadnum; Falada by Nancy Farmer; A Wolf at the door by Tanith Lee; Ali Baba and the forty aliens by Janeen Webb; Swans by Kelly Link; The Kingdom of Melting Glances by Katherine Vaz; Hansel's eyes by Garth Nix; Becoming Charise by Kathe Koja; The Seven stage a comeback by Gregory Maguire; The twelve dancing princesses by Patricia A. McKillip.

Alternate versions of various fair
Tyra Neve
Period 7th

Hello ladies and gentlemen of the jury. A Wolf at the Door by Ellen Datlow is a very good book. Why you ask? There are many reasons to why this book is just fantastic. This book is about our classic fairy tales gone wrong. These are not your mother's fairy tales... Did you ever wonder how the dwarves felt after Snow White left them for the prince after all they did for her? Do you sometimes wish that Cinderella hadn't been so defenseless and small? Are you ready to hear the
I originally chose this book from the library shelf because it was edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling, whose collections of very severely twisted fairy tales for grown-ups (starting with Snow White, Blood Red) I adore, though they occasionally leave me slightly horrified or at least unsettled.

I was not disappointed by the tales within, to my utter lack of surprise, though these are, of course, suitable for a younger demographic than the ones I am accustomed to reading in the anthologies g
Datlow and Windling (authors of several books in a fairy tale retellings series that includes Briar Rose by Jane Yolen) present a balanced blend of familiar and more obscure tales and well-known and first-time authors along with recommendations for resources about fairy tales and good collections of stories. Although their introduction is a perfect lead-in to Neil Gaiman's poem "Instructions" (a set of directions for how-to survive in fairyland with lessons gleaned from favorite tales), his gem ...more
Linzy Stahle
I usually love when people rewrite fairy tales and put their own spin on them and I'm a fan of many of the authors that were a part of this book. However I found their interpretations either confusing or just plain cringeworthy! I know that the fairy tales of old were practically rewritten by disney to make them lighter and more childlike. But I found some of these versions were even DARKER than what grimm thought up! For instance I didnt think Hansel and Gretel could be get more twisted and cre ...more
The Months of Manhattan, Delia Sherman: 2*
Cinder Elephant, Jane Yolen: 4*
Instructions, Neil Gaiman: 2*
Mrs. Big: Jack and the Beanstalk, Michael Cadnum: 1*
Falada: The Goose Girl's Horse, Nancy Farmer: 2*
A Wolf at the Door, Tanith Lee: 2*
Ali Baba and the Forty Aliens, Janeen Webb: 1*
Swans, Kelly Link: 2*
The Kingdom of Melting Glances, Katherine Vaz: 3*
Hansel's Eyes, Garth Nix: 2*
Becoming Charise, Kathe Koja: 1*
The Seven Stage a Comeback, Gregory Maguire: 1*
The Twelve Dancing Princesses, Patricia A
C. L.
My weakness for fairy tale rewrites continues. There are thirteen short (and I mean short) stories in this, and obviously there's a range in quality, but it's worth reading for the poems by Neil Gaiman and Gregory Maguire alone.
Definitely a collection geared towards younger readers; worth it for Patricia McKillip's odd and creepy take on the Twelve Dancing Princesses, by far the best story in the book. (Could have been longer, though.)
A book of twisted, & usually darker, retellings of classic fairy tales by various authors that are still appropriate for young adults. I enjoyed most of them, though I think the second half of the anthology was better than the first. Would definitely read more anthologies by these editors.
When I selected this for the club, I knew it was aimed at a younger audience, but I was impressed by the author line up and assumed they'd have great offerings for young readers. Retelling fairy tales is such a great opportunity to get really creative. Unfortunately, I found the exact opposite to be the case here. I was really disappointed in the majority of the stories.

The stories weren't completely horrible and I liked the ones that were based on the non-"standard" fairytales (i.e. there were
This book of reworked fairy tales has a couple of real gems and several big names. Neil Gaiman's "Instructions" was not really a story, but more like a list of do's and don'ts when entering the fairy tale realm. The modern setting for the Hansel and Gretel tale was creepy and I wanted to find out more about their life when they return to their father. The redone Cinderella story was amusing, making fun of all those flitting birds from the Disney version. The Twelve Months of the Year story was a ...more
Did you ever wonder how the dwarves felt after Snow White ditched them for the prince? Do you sometimes wish Cinderella hadn't been so helpless and petite? Are you ready to hear the Giant's point of view on Jack and his beanstalk? Then this is the book for you.

Thirteen award-winning fantasy and science fiction writers offer up their versions of these classic fairy tales as well as other favorites, including The Ugly Duckling, Ali Baba, Hansel and Gretel, and more. Some of the stories are funny,
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LeVar's Rainbow B...: A Wolf at the Door 5 4 May 30, 2013 05:52PM  
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Ellen Datlow has been an award-winning editor of short science fiction, fantasy, and horror for over twentyfive years.

She is editor of the Best Horror of the Year and has edited or co-edited a large number of award-winning original anthologies. Her most recent are Supernatural Noir, Naked City, Blood and Other Cravings, The Beastly Bride, Teeth, Trolls Eye View, and After (the last three with Ter
More about Ellen Datlow...

Other Books in the Series

Retold Fairy Tales for Younger Readers (3 books)
  • Swan Sister: Fairy Tales Retold
  • The Dark of the Woods
Snow White, Blood Red Naked City: Tales of Urban Fantasy Lovecraft Unbound The Faery Reel: Tales from the Twilight Realm Black Heart, Ivory Bones

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