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Fairest of All: A Tale of the Wicked Queen

(Villains #1)

3.83  ·  Rating details ·  12,452 ratings  ·  1,693 reviews
The tale of the young princess and her evil stepmother, the Wicked Queen, is widely known. Despite a few variations from telling to telling, the story remains the same—the Queen was jealous of the girl’s beauty, and this jealousy culminated in the Queen’s attempt on the sweet, naive girl’s life.

Another tale far less often spoken of is the one that explains what caused the
Hardcover, 250 pages
Published August 18th 2009 by Disney Press
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Average rating 3.83  · 
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 ·  12,452 ratings  ·  1,693 reviews

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Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
*****possible spoilers**********

The Queen (her name never is mentioned) marries the love of her life- (Bleck) becomes stepmommy to little Snow White and is just all peaches and cream. She is almost sugary sweet.

The King gives her a mirror that her late father made before his death. Queen thinks she sees someone in the mirror but everyone just poo-poos her into thinking she imagined it. We then find out that the Queen has had a horrible childhood with an abusive father. (Guess who's soul in
Dannii Elle
This is the first instalment in the Villains series, which rework the original tales from the initial villain's perspective.

This book had big boots to fill, given the renown of the similarly themed and big-hit movie, Maleficent. I think it did so extraordinarily well. Despite the difference in Disney villain chosen, there were many similarities that linked he two, yet I liked it no less for that.

This traditional villain is given a backstory that belies her following evil and, instead, exposes a
J.T. Whitesell
Aug 19, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: young-adult, fantasy
A wonderful story about how the wicked queen from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs became so wicked.
I like to casually browse the Young Adult section at Borders and B&N and I'm very influenced by cover art. Reading the inside flap, I only needed one sentence to sway me. I bought it immediately and started reading once I got home. I have to say that the author caught the Disney version of the characters perfectly and I believe that's the way it should be.
The writing was well written and it
Apr 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
This book hurt my heart a little bit. The queen was so much more complicated and hurt and loving and..human..then I ever expected her to be portrayed. She deserved more. She deserved better. She needed help and she rejected it and I'm so glad I stumbled upon this book. I loved it.
Brittany Batong
Feb 15, 2011 rated it it was ok
This was one of those books that I really wanted to like, because I had such high hopes for it. It starts off well enough, chronicling the early years of Snow White and "the Queen", as she is simply called (I actually read somewhere that during development of the 1937 film the Queen was called by the name Grimhilde). I particulary enjoyed the warmth of the relationship between the two, laying down a nice contrast between past and present. Unfortunately, the book was oftentimes laden with awkward ...more
May 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Re-telling of Snow White!!!

This was very beautiful. I enjoyed Snow White in a way I've never have. I look forward to continue reading more books in this series! Highly recommend tho anyone who loves re-telling and fantasy.
Jamie (ReadsinTrees) Dacyczyn
May 09, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: did-not-finish
Did not finish. Literally made it about five or six pages before quitting. It read like amateurish fanfiction.

The book starts out with the main character briefly introduced as she gets ready in front of her mirror...and then does a lot of thinking and info dumping/reminiscing right away. No no no...either just go ahead and GIVE us the history of the story (like a prologue perhaps), or have something happen in the NOW and give us the history gradually. Don't have literally nothing happening in
Karen Whittard
I have a little bug bear. Just a little one that I need to get off my chest before I continue with without this bug bear would be a glowing review. This series of books are published by Disney Enterprises. Which to me means that they should vet the books before they go out. But it doesn't seem like they have. I was disgruntled reading the beast wishing because they kept calling Prince Adam, The Prince and not by his name which is a little annoying. Then I read this book and instead of calling ...more
Mariah Roze
Dec 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
I have been wanting to read these books forever and this one did not disappoint!

"The tale of the young princess and her evil stepmother, the Wicked Queen, is widely known. Despite a few variations from telling to telling, the story remains the same—the Queen was jealous of the girl’s beauty, and this jealousy culminated in the Queen’s attempt on the sweet, naive girl’s life.
Another tale far less often spoken of is the one that explains what caused the Queen to become so contemptuously vile.
Sep 08, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ku, hollywood
This is not a book for the kiddies. This is a rather very depressing story. We are introduced to 'the Queen', Step mother of Snow White, commoner married to the king. The King met her when she was working at her father's mirror shop. Her father is the greatest mirror craftsman in the Kingdom and the King is overwhelmed by her beauty.

Alas 'the Queen's' birth lead to the death of her mother and her father cursed her every day for killing the woman he loved. He tells her she is ugly, he belittles
Destiny (myhoneyreads)
Actual rating: 2.7

I thought it was nice to hear from the Queen’s perspective, and everything actually made sense. With that being said, I didn’t care for the changing perspectives mid chapter, the odd language (that tried to sound old and fairy tale like but failed), the added characters, or the almost word for word overlap of the Disney movie.

The ending was, okay. Overall, it was an enjoyable story with its fair share of problems.
Aqsa (On Hiatus)
Sep 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 4-stars, favorites
4.5 :)

This was my first retelling of Snow White. I loved the Queen and the King and got to know them way better than Snow. I was hoping for something in the end which didn't seem to eventually happen and immensely disappointed me but immediately confused me too. Was it happy? The end? She did say I love you unlike her what her father said. I need a baby sequel to tell me what happened!

It was the sweetest book and never did I think I'd ever love to come the wicked Queen and hope for her
Sarah Churchill
I like the twist on the Evil Queen's backstory, but this one didn't really do it for me. Disjointed, the pacing was way off, and it just didn't make much sense a lot of the time. Years passed without mention, then a month, then a few more years. It felt like she had to try to fit it to the timescale of Snow White growing up, and so just did that by saying the Queen got a bit more mad during that time.

I really liked the first few chapters, with the Queen being young and how she met the king. But
“I cannot live in fear of losing him, for fear of not living my life at all.”

I absolutely love fairy tale retellings from different perspectives.

Plus, I feel like I've been on such a villain kick and again, I love it.

(view spoiler)
Jan 17, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: adult-fantasy
This book is a quick read. I read this book in one day and it was an alright book. The tale of Snow White and the Wicked Queen is not one of my favorites; however, I love books that delve into the back story of villains and why they become villains. That being said, I don't feel like this book took a deep enough look into why the Wicked Queen became Wicked.

The story begins with the Queen marrying the love of her life and moving to his palace after the death of her father. She becomes like a
Feb 22, 2011 rated it really liked it
Sometimes it can be really interesting to look at things from a different perspective. In this instance, Valentino presents the story of Snow White from the perspective of the Queen, her step-mother. The tale starts shortly after the Queen has married Snow White's father. They seem to have formed a very happy family. The Queen is an adoring mother figure for poor Snow White, whose mother died years before.

Things start to change when the King must join his men on the battlefield, leaving the
Sep 29, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: 3-stars-2017
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Emerald Sue
Aug 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
“The words wounded deeper than the bruises and the scars from any physical pain he inflicted on me. At least those wounds healed.”
Fiona MacDonald
Aug 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What a wonderful look into the past of the Wicked Queen from Snow White.
Serena Valentino has taken the story and researched it thoroughly, showing us how normal and kind the Queen was to start with until her obsession with the Mirror turned her life around.
When we find out that the reason the Queen is so fixated on the magic mirror is because her cruel and evil father was the spirit inside of it, we start to understand a little more about her history of being mistreated and mentally
Kira Simion
Jul 11, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: retellings, prime, 2019
Not gonna lie. I struggled with the writing on this one. It wasn’t very good at showing, just told everything which isn’t bad, but man I felt like I was reading a much older book. And the fairytale part of it started out good, but dragged on and on and the ending felt forced for the most part since the transition was a different idea, but preceding that, the writing didn’t support as much.
Jammin Jenny
I loved this book and I love this series of fairy tale retellings. This is the story of Snow White, but told from the Queen's perspective. I love seeing into the backstory of the queen, her evil father, the wicked cousins of the King, the love the King shared with both his wife, the queen and his daughter Snow. I also loved the love between the queen and Snow when Snow was a little girl and before the queen was driven to madness. I also loved the ending in this retelling. If you like fairy tales ...more
The Winter Rose
Mar 04, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult
I love Disney, fairy tales and fairy tale retellings. But this did not impress me.

Fairest of All is a retelling of Snow White from the Wicked Queen's point of view. It is very clear that Ms. Valentino (and I somehow strongly suspect that Serena Valentino is a pen name cause I mean... really... a name like that is right up there with Bella Swan *insert eye roll here*) is desperately attempting to do what Wicked did for The Wizard of Oz. But this falls so short of the mark.

First off, one of the
colleen the convivial curmudgeon
An interesting telling of the Snow White story from the Queen's perspective. Shows her as a loving and lovely young woman and her descent into jealousy, vanity and madness. A decent story - but I expected a bit more depth, I suppose.

I'm a bit torn on the language used. It was very simplistic, like a child's storybook. At first it bothered me, but then I decided it sort of fit the style of the story. I'm also not entirely thrilled with the obsession with beauty - it basically amounts to the
Chelsey Ellice
Absolutely loved this book. Loved the backstory and how the queen became evil. Can’t wait to read the rest of the series
Feb 08, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018-read
Mirror, Mirror on the wall
Who is the prettiest of them all?

I love most of the Disney stories, so when someone mentioned a Disney Villains series I had to check it out. Admittedly, Snow White is one of my least favorites of the princesses, but I think the Evil Queen was always interesting. The psychology behind villains is always intriguing. What made them choose the path of evil? In this case, what triggered the Queen and why was she so damn vain?

The story overall was interesting, but I
Krithika Sundar
Aug 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2016, fantasy
5 stars!!!!

Finally, A book from the wicked Witches POV. Should I say it was excellent. I threw away any expectations and read this book and was surprised. We ALL know what happens in snow white, but we don't know why the Queen became like she was. Filled with vanity and hatred.

I won't say what the Queen did was just but I can understand why she became such a person. The book doesn't make her to be some anti hero but gets down to the dirty facts of how the Queen was and it still brought chills
Dec 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
HIGHLY RECOMMEND. I loved the back story. actually made sense with the original.
Oct 28, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Have you ever wondered why the queen from Snow White was so wicked. I always wondered why she hated Snow White. I like a good villain, but am not a big fan of retelling classic fairy tales. This was disappointing. I didn’t like the writing style. It focused too much on the queens abusive life. Words do matter. As a young girl the queen was called ugly, that is how she became obsessed with beauty. I hated the three sisters. They encouraged her to experiment with dark magic. The first half of the ...more
Sep 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Morbidly appealing-- The dark Disney aesthetic is so kick-ass.

Have you ever wondered what past hurts have caused villains to be the way they are why they act the way they do? If you are intrigued, you may enjoy this book.

This is a darker retelling of Walt Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, and it is one of my favorite books from beginning to end. There are not many books giving complete empathy to villains, plus Disney elements, like come on, this is just glorious! Let me rave about one
Feb 07, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: didn-t-finish
Interesting concept, I just couldn't finish it for some reason. I understand it is a young adult book but it wasn't extremely interesting, very slow moving.
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Serena Valentino is best known for weaving tales that combine mythos and guile with her work on the comic book series GloomCookie and Nightmares & Fairy Tales, and her best selling Disney Villain Novels which have earned her critical acclaim for her unique style of storytelling, bringing her readers into exquisitely frightening worlds filled with terror, beauty and extraordinary female ...more

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Villains (7 books)
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“The words wounded deeper than the bruises and the scars from any physical pain he inflicted on me. At least those wounds healed.” 11 likes
“I cannot live in fear of losing him, for fear of not living my life at all.” 6 likes
More quotes…