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The Victorian Fairy Tale Book
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The Victorian Fairy Tale Book

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  243 ratings  ·  17 reviews
From Robert Browning’s Pied Piper of Hamelin and William Makepeace Thackeray’s Rose and the Ring to Kenneth Grahame’s Reluctant Dragon and J. M. Barrie’s Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens, here are seventeen classic stories and poems from the golden age of the English fairy tale. Some of them amuse, some enchant, some satirize and criticize, but each one–in the words of Laur ...more
Hardcover, Pantheon Fairy Tale and Folklore Library, 385 pages
Published September 12th 1988 by Pantheon (first published 1988)
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Average rating 4.06  · 
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 ·  243 ratings  ·  17 reviews

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Sep 07, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry, short-stories
The introduction of this book describes the battle over the ancient Celtic fairyland in Britain, from its renaissance in Shakespeare and his contemporaries through various degrees of suppression under changing regimes and varieties of Christian moral anxiety. Fears of corrupting the young were resolved by Victorian times into the moral fairytale, strictly cleansed of the 'savagery and ethical ambiguity' of many traditional stories and recast as "engines for the propulsion of all virtues into the ...more
Snail in Danger (Sid) Nicolaides
This book contains the stories listed below. I skipped the ones marked with *, because I had read them before. The ones marked with a +, I really liked, and the ones marked with a -, I couldn't finish, or it didn't really interest me. All in all this is a nice collection. It includes some reasonably well-known pieces as well as some obscure ones. It was interesting to finally read "Goblin Market" and see its influence on Lud-in-the-Mist.

*The King of the Golden River by John Ruskin
The Pied Piper
Jun 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Beautiful collection of fairy tales. I love fairy tales and hadn't read any of these other than "The Selfish Giant" (Wilde) and "The Deliverers of Their Country" (Nesbitt) before. So fun reading such varied stories using the beloved fairy tale tropes. It also includes fairy-ish poems such as Christina Rossetti's "Goblin Market" (beautiful)! While most were just very charming and droll, it ends with a sad Peter Pan tale that makes you think on the loss of innocent childhood and the security of ha ...more
Seventeen stories and poems written by some of the most famous authors of the Victorian era. My favorite were: Melilot by Henry Morley, The Little Lame Prince and his Travelling-Cloak by Dina Marie Mulock Craik, The Neckace of Princess Fiormonde by Mary De Morgan, The Stolen Child by William Butler Yeats, Rocking-Horse Land by Laurence Housman.

An excellent collection with an informative and interesting introduction.
I love Fairy Tales and this collection does not disappoint. Filled with engaging tales that will delight those who enjoy the genre.
Dec 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ended on an amazingly depressing note.
Jun 29, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've been interested in folk tales and fairy tales for a while. This book was a bit of an intellectual exercise. I think I may have read one of the poems in it before for school. I'm not familiar with some of the authors, aside from not knowing that Charles Dickens ever wrote a fairy tale. It has a couple of stories that everyone has heard of but maybe never read, such as a poem of the Pied Piper, and J. M. Barrie's "Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens" (like a prequel to the Peter Pan stories).

I ha
This was an interesting collection, featuring several stories I had never previously encountered. I found The Brown Owl to be of particular interest. It featured a complex, empowered heroine and surprising diversity, both of which I was pleased to see in a Victorian text. Altogether, an interesting read. I certainly want to continue with the Pantheon Fairy Tale & Folklore Library collection.
Sep 19, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A thoughtful collection of poems and tales that really embody the magic and morals that became the signature of fairy tales of the period. Who knew so many of the era's most respected writers of classic literature also wrote for children! This collection would be a wonderful addition to the personal library of anyone who loves fairy tales or loves the literature of the Victorian era.
I had been curious to reading fairy tales other than the usual Grimms and Andersen, and being interested in anything 19th century/Victorian, this book was exactly what I was looking for. I enjoyed some tales more than others, and liked reading stories for children written by authors I was used to writting for adults.
Dec 25, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a lovely and quirky collection of fairy tales, only one of which I had read years ago, The Goblin Market. A good read if you are interested in reading offbeat works of famous Victorian writers--Thackeray, Dickens, and Wilde are all featured. Robert Browning's Pied Piper of Hamlin was my favorite.
Hat of Nikitich
Victorian fairy tales are terrible! Not qualitatively, but they end so awfully, or have such dour overtones. I'm versed in the why of it, it's just a little overwhelming to read through a collection and have it sink in.
Feb 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I love this quirky collection of Victorian fairy tales--King of the Golden River, The Rose and the Ring, and many more.
Mar 01, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you like true(great story structure and writing, I don't mean factual, of course)fairy tales, you'll love this!
Aug 25, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Still reading this, but so far, the stories are great. A great addition to my fairy tale collection. :) A plus is that they're enjoyable for both kids and adults.
May 12, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A wonderful collection of Fairy Tales written by well-known 19th century authors and accompanying illustrations. The stories evoke a wonderful sense of place and whimsy.
Aaron Theis
May 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A rather excellent compilation of Victorian Era Fairy Tales by the likes of Dickens, Barrie, Yeats, Wilde, Craik, and Barrie, to name but a few of the wonderful authors included in this collection.
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Michael Patrick Hearn’s books include The Annotated Wizard of Oz, The Annotated Huckleberry Finn, The Annotated Christmas Carol, and The Andrew Lang Fairy Tale Book. He lives in New York City.