What's the Name of That Book??? discussion

A Wizard's Dozen: Stories Of The Fantastic
This topic is about A Wizard's Dozen
136 views
SOLVED: Children's/YA > SOLVED. Short story about a girl, a dragon, and a total creep. [s]

Comments Showing 1-13 of 13 (13 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Rosa (last edited Sep 23, 2018 10:43AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rosa (rosaiglarsh) | 4997 comments Alrighty, this was a nontraditional fairy tale in a collection of, I think, fantasy stories for teens or adults (read between 2008-2013). A virgin girl is either sent to a dragon by her village or is captured by him. He's very intimidating, but tells her that he will keep her alive unless she displeases him, and he expects her to entertain him. I seem to remember this line: "'You'll sing,' said the dragon. 'You'll dance.'"
For a while they live together in peace, although the girl is terrified. But they have a kind of sympathy. The girl wants to leave her village for something better--marrying the prince, maybe--and she doesn't want children. The dragon understands these desires. He says to her about children, "They bring pain both in and out of the womb."
One day, a knight or something comes to rescue her. The dragon wins the fight, but the girl begs him to spare the guy's life. The guy escapes, either because the dragon is distracted and forgets to hold him, or he allows him to go. But the dragon is displeased with the girl, and tells her that if she tries that again, it's all over. The girl is even more terrified.
Later, a boy from the village, a bully and a creep, comes to the dragon's lair when the dragon is not around. (I don't know why the girl didn't try to escape.) She tells him that he has to go, because the dragon could be back any minute, and he tells her not to be afraid: "It likes you." Not anymore, she tells him. The dragon won't care if he torches them both. The boy either doesn't listen or doesn't care. He tells her that they'll get married once he's rescued her. She tells him no, she doesn't want to go with him, and he grabs her, holds a knife to her throat, and tells her that he thinks five (or maybe seven) children would be a good number. She somehow twists out of his grasp and gets him with his own knife--it may have been an accident.
Suddenly, the dragon is there with her again, and he tells her that she has to go now, because she's no longer a virgin. She protests that the boy didn't deflower her, but the dragon says that there are different kinds of purity and innocence, and she is not the same now that she's killed a man.
Then I don't know what happens for a while. The girl somehow falls into an enchanted sleep, and somehow ends up at the castle, where she is given the best medical care in the kingdom and wakes up. She captivates the prince with one dazzling/breathtaking smile...and all of her dreams come true.
I would like to know the collection in which this story appeared. Thank you in advance.


message 2: by Rainbowheart (new)

Rainbowheart | 16272 comments Was this a single author collection or multiple authors?

Do you remember if the other stories were fairy tales or just general fantasy stories? I know you said either YA or adult, but if you had to guess, which of those categories do you think?


Rosa (rosaiglarsh) | 4997 comments I think it was in an anthology, but I'm not sure. I'm guessing it was YA.


message 4: by Debbie (new)

Debbie (silentrequiem) | 87 comments I remember reading this too, though I think I had read it in the late-90s to early 2000s. If that helps narrow the window down at all. I read a lot of anthologies edited by Martin H. Greenberg at that time, so maybe take a look at those?


message 5: by Rosa (last edited Aug 07, 2018 08:46PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rosa (rosaiglarsh) | 4997 comments Debbie wrote: "I remember reading this too, though I think I had read it in the late-90s to early 2000s. If that helps narrow the window down at all. I read a lot of anthologies edited by Martin H. Greenberg at t..."

I'm glad someone else has read it. Thanks for the tip. Was it maybe one of the stories in Dragon Tales? I thought it was a newer collection than that, but I'm not really sure.
Martin H. Greenberg


message 6: by Debbie (new)

Debbie (silentrequiem) | 87 comments I don't think it was. I don't rememeber reading that anthology, though I was such a voracious reader then, it's possible.


Rosa (rosaiglarsh) | 4997 comments Bump.


Rosa (rosaiglarsh) | 4997 comments Bump.


message 9: by Rosa (last edited Mar 14, 2019 09:51AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rosa (rosaiglarsh) | 4997 comments Found it! I knew I was long overdue rereading A Wizard's Dozen: Stories Of The Fantastic, but I didn’t know just how long. The story is “The Breath of Princes,” by Alan P. Smale, and Stephanie’s smile is described as “sparkling.”


message 10: by Debbie (new)

Debbie (silentrequiem) | 87 comments Rosa wrote: "Found it! I was long overdue rereading A Wizard's Dozen: Stories Of The Fantastic, but I didn’t know just how long. The story is “The Breath of Princes,” by [author:Alan P. Smale|504..."

Nice find, Rosa! I had completely forgotten reading this book, but I must have checked it out from the library because I went through a phase where I devoured everything Patricia C. Wrede wrote.


message 11: by Rainbowheart (new)

Rainbowheart | 16272 comments Glad you found it, Rosa!


message 12: by Rosa (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rosa (rosaiglarsh) | 4997 comments Thanks, Debbie and Rainbowheart!
Debbie, I loved the story "The Sixty-Two Curses of Caliph Arenschadd" when I first read it in Patricia C. Wrede's Book of Enchantments (wonderful book), but the illustration in A Wizard's Dozen made it even better.
Rainbowheart, I was wondering about the distinction you made between fantasy stories and fairy tales. What does it mean, to you?


message 13: by Emmy (new) - added it

Emmy (emmy205) | 39 comments Rosa wrote: "Rainbowheart, I was wondering about the distinction you made between fantasy stories and fairy tales. What does it mean, to you?"

Hi, Rosa:
Not to butt in, but I think the difference between fairytales and fantasy is that fairytales are generally simpler, shorter stories that can be wrapped up quite nicely. There is always a similar pattern to them, and the ending is generally happy for the good characters and not so happy for the bad. Also, fairytales have a sense of being passed down through the generations, which fantasy stories do not.

However, I'm interested in hearing what Rainbowheart has to say, too!


back to top