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Grimm, Grit and Gasoline (Punked Up Fairy Tales, #1)

4.30  ·  Rating details ·  60 ratings  ·  43 reviews
Dieselpunk and decopunk are alternative history re-imaginings of (roughly) the WWI and WWII eras: tales with the grit of roaring bombers and rumbling tanks, of 'We Can Do It' and old time gangsters, or with the glamour of flappers and Hollywood starlets, smoky jazz and speakeasies. The stories in this volume add fairy tales to the mix, transporting classic tales to this ri ...more
Paperback, 300 pages
Published September 3rd 2019 by World Weaver Press
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Average rating 4.30  · 
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 ·  60 ratings  ·  43 reviews

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Dee Arr
Jul 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, dieselpunk
I have begun to look forward to each offering from editor Rhonda Parrish and World Weaver Press, as their compilations of short stories have yet to disappoint. “Grimm, Grit, and Gasoline,” a mixture of Dieselpunk, Decopunk, and fairy tales, is no exception.

There are nineteen stories from different authors, and none of them disappointed. Yes, there are some I enjoyed more than others, but I never experienced the feeling that a tale was lacking and that I would be better served to skip to the next
A nice collection of Dieselpunk retellings of Grimm fairy tales. My favourite stories were "The Loch" by Zannier Alejandra (a Swan Lake retelling), "Daughters of Earth and Sky" by Robert E. Vardeman (a take on Little Mermaid themes), and "A Princess, a Spy, and a Dwarf Walked into a Bar Full of Nazis" by Patrick Bollivar (a silly romp that retells Sleeping Beauty in WWII France). ...more
Beth Cato
Jul 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is awesome. I supplied a blurb:
"Magic mixes with grease and jazz in this fantastic new anthology that brims with strong heroines, diverse settings, and a heaping helping of Nazi-punching."
Aug 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Disclosure: I got a copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

I enjoyed this collection of ”punked up” fairytales. Unlike many anthologies there were no weak stories in the book and several standouts, including those Laura VanArendonk Baugh, A. A. Medina and Nellie K. Neeves. The original fairy tales are mainly European, although there are a few from other geographies. The writing, editing, and overall presentation were very good and not apparent as I read the book. My only quibble wo
Jul 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Starred review from Publisher's Weekly, "These unfailingly clever tales are impressive and page-turning, helping to correct the dearth of speculative fiction set in the interwar era. There is also a frequent and welcome spotlight on heroic women. Any reader who enjoys early-20th-century history or retold fairy tales will find these familiar but new, with well-played wonder in every story."

Read the whole review here -->
Jul 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
DieselPunk retellings of some of your favorite fairytales, and many you've never heard of.

I wasn't expecting to like this book, as it's not my favorite genre. Instead I found myself glued to each story, trying to figure out before it told me, which fairy tale it was based on!

ARC received from editor, and I'm really glad!
Sheena Carroll
Aug 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
(Note: I received a free copy of this ebook for review through the LibraryThing Early Reviewers program.)

I was impressed with the creativity of these stories: Journey to the West in the Dust Bowl, Cinderella meets The Great Gatsby in a detective noir, and many other historical and cultural mashups that are at the bare minimum very creative and at their best so clever that they made me a little envious as a writer! Parrish did an excellent job curating and organizing this collection; the opening
Jun 30, 2019 marked it as to-read
PW Starred: As anthologist Parrish explains in the introduction to this wonderful anthology, dieselpunk and decopunk are cousins of steampunk, fantastical stories set between the start of WWI and the end of WWII. These dieselpunk and decopunk retellings of fairy tales go far afield for an entertaining variety of interpretations. Laura VanArendonk Baugh’s claustrophobic thriller “To Go West” brings literal grit by way of a savage magical Dust Bowl wind that pursues a group on a mission from Heave ...more
Jay C
Aug 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
It's hard to rate anthologies since they can be such a mixed bag. I eventually decided on 4 stars because there are several stories in this one that are very much worth reading and make the book worth buying. My favorites:

Evening Chorus by Lizz Donnelly (a retelling of Hans Christian Anderson's "The Nightingale")
Make This Water No Deeper by Blake Jessop (do you know what a "Rusalka" is? I didn't until now)
One Hundred Years by Jennifer Donohue (another legend I wasn't previously aware of)
Ramps an
A mixed bag, like any anthology -- a few little gems, a few clunkers, and some in between. My particular favorites were the resetting of Monkey's journey to the West into the dustbowl exodus, and the rusalka who resents the Dneiper dam, as the Russians face the Nazi advance on the region. ...more
Feb 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The time of “Dieselpunk’ and “Decopunk” runs from the start of WW 1 to the end of WW 2. Like Steampunk, they refer to an alternate world history, one in which the mechanics of the world are futuristic- ray guns, robots (sometimes sentient ones), rockets, and, sometimes, magic. Some of the tales I think I’d call noir punk. This collection takes fairy tales and sets them in this D-punk world, mostly with good effect. Sleeping Beauty, Pinocchio. Rapunzel, the Little Mermaid, and more. I was happy t ...more
Sep 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This lovely PG13 anthology of deiselpunk and decopunk fairy tales took me almost a week because my computer kept crashing but I am sure it could be read in far less time than that.
Circles and Salt by Sara Cleto: a remarkable short tale about dealing with the devil.
Salvage by A.A. Medina: A quickie set near WWI Verdun.
The Loch by Zannier Alehandra: This one is England, WWII.
Evening Chorus by Lizz Donnelly: A lovely rendition of The Nattergalen.
To Go West by Laura VanArendonk Baugh: This is the du
Annette Jordan
A fun collection of fairy and folk tales with a DIeselpunk spin, I really enjoyed this collection of stories collected together by Rhonda Parrish. I had never heard of this genre before, but I was immediately drawn to the cover, and once I read the explanatory introduction I knew that I would enjoy this book.. To explain, Dieselpunk is a little like Steampunk, but set at a later date, instead of the Victorian era associated with steampunk, these stories are largely set in the era of the first an ...more
Lizz Donnelly
Oct 30, 2019 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
**no star review because I have a story in this anthology!**

I had a couple of standout favorites in this anthology. 

Brian Trent's Steel Dragons of a Luminous Sky is fantastic. I loved the eastern influence of this one, and the mechanical qilin, which I had to google, and is a mythic Chinese unicorn dragon. The twist at the end, which I won't give away, was very well done. 

I also really enjoyed Alena Van Arendonk's The Rescue of Tresses Malone, which, you may have guessed, is a Rapunzel re-telli
My first thought was I’ve never heard of the Dieselpunk genre. However Rhonda Parrish is a favourite author of mine, so I took the plunge. I’m so glad I did as this genre is now something I will definitely be reading again. I’ve read a lot of re-tellings of Fairytales & I love Mythology. I’ve always been able to recognise the Fairytales & Fables early on but Dieselpunk has so many twists and turns, some with hard edges &. approaches you would never consider, it will keep you on your toes until t ...more
Reese Hogan
Aug 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
It was great fun to get lost in the industrial and gritty world of these dieselpunk fairy tale retellings. Filled with rivets, steel, planes, and tanks, it featured a diverse cast of protagonists with a fascinating array of strengths and motivations. While I found the “decopunk” ones fun, my true love was with the military-slanted stories, and there were plenty of great ones to choose from. Ranging from tales with real-life historical figures to fables from different parts of the world, from the ...more
Sep 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I got this as an ARC copy in exchange for a fair and honest review. I am a huge fan of fairy tale retellings and re-imaginings and this collection did not disappoint. It was like mixing The Rocketeer, The Great Gatsby and a book of fairy tales. As mentioned by other reviewers there were some stories I liked more than others, but all in all this was a fun collection that took a different approach to some well known and some little less known fairy tales and folk tales. Anthology books are a great ...more
Douglas Williamson
Nov 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is an anthology of stories with the unusual mix of themes including fairy tales, dieselpunk and decopunk. I am still not sure I understand what decopunk is.

I love anthologies for the opportunity to explore new authors and this was a perfect example. Consisting of nineteen stories by different authors, I got a wide variety of styles, plots and characters which thrilled me with each new tale. While I did have my favorites, none of them were duds and I was sad to come to the end of the last on
Anastasiia Nesterenko
Sep 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: retellings
I often buy anthologies curated by Rhonda Parrish. They are always unusual and it is a great way to discover new authors. This particular anthology has scared me at first. Both World Wars were extremely scary. But as this collection shows, those time periods could also be a setting for stories full of hope and magic. I really liked them. I found their Swan Lake retelling especially endearing. I highly recommend this anthology. Moreover, I have not only gotten an ARC - I have also bought the book ...more
Take the Brothers Grimm, drop in diesel-punk, add in fairy tales from around the world and a few noir settings, turn on the blender, and puree. A nice collection of short stories that blend a wide variety of fairy tales with World War - World War II settings . My favorite tales from this collection are "A Princess, A Spy, and a Dwarf Walk into A Bar Full of Nazis," " Steel Dragons of a Luminous Sky," and "As the Spindle Burns" with "Accidents are Not Possible" a close contender. if you like fair ...more
Teri Ruscak
Jan 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Grimm, Grit and Gasoline by
Rhonda Parrish is an awesome anthology, with retellings of The Little Mermaid, Hansel and Gretel, Rapunzel, Cinderella, The Monkey King, Swan Lake, Pinocchio and more are all showcased alongside some original fairy tale-like stories.
Featuring stories by Zannier Alejandra, Alicia K. Anderson, Jack Bates, Patrick Bollivar, Sara Cleto, Amanda C. Davis, Jennifer R. Donohue, Juliet Harper, Blake Jessop, A.A. Medina, Lizz Donnelly, Nellie Neves, Wendy Nikel, Brian Trent, Ale
Sep 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book of punked up fairy tales was a very interesting read! I loved the creativity the authors used to alter well known and little known fairy tales. I'm not usually one for war stories, but there were many in here that I enjoyed. The anthology features lots of strong women, Nazi fighting, and hope. I also liked that not all the stories were based on Western-world tales. As usual, Parrish has put together an anthology with stories that are varied and diverse, so there will be at least one or ...more
Iseult Murphy
Sep 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Do you like stories set during the Second World War, featuring giant (often sentient) machines? Yes! How about stories of the roaring twenties that feature reworked fairy tales? Yes! This anthology has wonderful, magical, entertaining and moving stories that feature magic and war. Apparently this genre is called diesel punk and deco punk, and I can’t wait to read more like it. Highly imaginative from first to last, a must read for fantasy fans.

I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout a
Jemima Pett
My Review

This book is a real treat!  I didn't realise from the call for submissions it was just 'retell a fairy tale in a wildly different setting' although that's pretty much what the call said.  How far does one have to go to avoid plagiarism?

As it turns out, reimagining fairy tales is not plagiarism, and you can use exactly the same names if you like.  Just put them in a completely different setting, with some imaginative twists, so that the reader almost knows what's coming, but it's enjoyab
This is an overall solid collection of fairytale and fairytale-like stories set in a timeframe spanning from the 1920’s to WW II. The settings are diverse and there are a variety of interesting tales used as the backbones of the stories.

One important caveat is that a significant number of the stories take place in WWII. The introduction makes it clear that the editor expanded the definition of dieselpunk to go beyond the interwar years. Another is that they are closer to fairytale retelling a t
Heather W
Sep 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is my first foray into the world of Dieselpunk and Decopunk and I found these fairy tales, both retellings and originals, to be very interesting. I had never heard of these genres but found them to be stories told in the era in and between WWI and WWII. These are imaginative and creative and I really enjoyed reading this anthology. Some stories I liked better than others, but none of them disappointed me.

I voluntarily read and reviewed a copy of this book with no obligation.
Jan 14, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, fantasy
It's not the first collection of short stories with fairy tales as a theme. This is an OK collection with a few decent stories, some of the stories are pretty rough while some longer ones are quite good. I probably would have written a kinder review if I hadn't just finished a much better collection of shorts by Seanan McGuire. A borderline decent book. ...more
Pat Eroh
Oct 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I love anthologies and I really love dieselpunk and, throw in some fairytales, I am hooked. I watch for this author's anthologies because she has such good stories included. This book is fabulous and though I liked some better than others, there were none that I did not enjoy!

I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.
Sep 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a great set of stories if you’re into the genre, and a good way to get a feel for a lot of authors’ writing. It has a good variety to them. There are always a few in anthology books one doesn’t like, but I enjoyed most of what was in this book.
Sep 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Yet another fabulous collection of tales from Rhonda! I love the fairy tale, short stories and way they are told! Lots of fun to read!

I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.
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Like a magpie, Rhonda Parrish is constantly distracted by shiny things. She’s the editor of many anthologies and author of plenty of books, stories and poems.

She lives with her husband and three cats in Edmonton, Alberta, and she can often be found there playing Dungeons and Dragons, bingeing crime dramas or cheering on the Oilers.

Her website, updated regularly, is at

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